Car Hire from Knoxville Airport
The state of Tennessee is probably most famous for its music. It’s the home of the country sound, friendly people and hearty cuisine. Over in Eastern Tennessee, there’s the great outdoors to explore as well as some relaxed, laid back university cities. Hiring a car from Knoxville Airport allows you to discover the best of Tennessee at your own pace.
Where to hire a car at Knoxville Airport
There are many car hire companies at Knoxville Airport. These include Alamo, Payless, Sixt, Thrifty, Hertz, Enterprise, Avis and Budget. The car hire offices are located on the lower level of the terminal building, in front of the baggage claim areas.
Petrol Stations near Knoxville Airport
If your car hire agreement has a full to full fuel policy you will need to refuel it close to the airport before returning it to avoid being charged.
The closest petrol station to Knoxville Airport is just five minutes’ drive away. It’s a Marathon Gas station, which you’ll find by turning left onto route 129 / 115 out of the airport.
Driving around Knoxville Airport
Getting to and from Knoxville Airport is easy as it sits on a well-connected road network. Route 129 goes past the airport and travels north to Knoxville city as well as south towards Maryville. There are also easy connections to route 40 which travels west across the state to Nashville and east to the border with North Carolina.
All cars drive on the right hand side of the road in the USA. You should always try to pay extra attention when you’re tired or coming up to roundabouts as these tend to be the times when drivers slip back into default driving mode.
Getting to your destination
Knoxville Airport offers easy car access to a variety of city and countryside locations, including the following.
Knoxville city sits on the Tennessee River, just north of the airport. It has a lively student population and a vibrant nightlife scene. Market Square is a central hub where visitors will find weekly farmers’ markets, a host of restaurants and shops, and live events. There are also a number of museums, galleries and arts venues along with the city’s own zoo to discover.
Driving from Knoxville Airport to downtown Knoxville will take 15 minutes, taking route 129 into the centre.
Parking in the city centre is usually fairly easy. There are lots of free parking spaces although some have time limits. Parking at the central Market Street car park is free on weekday evenings and at weekends. At busier times, it’s possible to park on the outskirts of the city and navigate on foot.
Great Smoky Mountains National Park
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park sits on the state border between Tennessee and North Carolina. It’s one of USA’s most visited national parks. Visitors can embark on ranger-led tours, go camping, horse riding, hiking or cycling. There are also historic buildings throughout the park and some incredible wildlife including elk, racoons and black bears. Great Smoky Mountains National Park lies south east of Knoxville Airport, taking route 129 before picking up the 321. It takes around 30 minutes to reach the park where you’ll find parking at any of the various entrances.
There aren’t any petrol stations within the park so it’s best to fill up in one of the towns before you enter. Drivers are also encouraged to watch out for wildlife on the roads and take care when navigating narrow and winding stretches within the park.
Chattanooga is a leafy, friendly city which sits on the river. It is home to the world’s largest freshwater aquarium, located in an impressive glass pyramid structure, and the Hunter Museum of American Art where you’ll find works from the 19th and 20th centuries. Perhaps the most famous Chattanooga attraction, however, is Dollywood, a theme park in honour of one of Eastern Tennessee’s residents, Dolly Parton.
Chattanooga is around an hour and 40 minutes from Knoxville Airport. Drivers should take route 140 and then the 75 south. There is lots of parking available in central Chattanooga, spread over street spaces and big car parks.