Car rental return at SFO

Old May 2, 16, 12:43 pm
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Car rental return at SFO

Hi. First time returning a car to SFO (Avis. Then onto an AA flight). Anything weird to look out for? Shuttle bus runs from Avis to terminals ??
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Old May 2, 16, 12:55 pm
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Originally Posted by cheaptom View Post
Hi. First time returning a car to SFO (Avis. Then onto an AA flight). Anything weird to look out for? Shuttle bus runs from Avis to terminals ??
Welcome. Nothing weird about rental car returns at SFO. It's a large, multi-story complex with Airtrain shuttles that run pretty frequently. Train stops at all terminals. AA is Terminal 2.
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Old May 3, 16, 3:05 am
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Do this regularly but with Hertz to UA. When all is said and done, it's about 20 minutes from driving into the Rental Car Center to arriving at the bag drop. I know where I'm going, so 25 minutes for the OP would be safe.
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Old May 4, 16, 11:46 am
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The couple of times I've rented Avis at SFO their staff have been sllooowwww So add in an extra 20 minutes just in case.

But other than that, there's nothing weird or special about it.
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Old May 10, 16, 6:47 am
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My experience last week was that it took 25 minutes to return my car - Hertz - and get to the airport. Of course, it depends a bit on how long you have to wait for the Air Train. It's not weird or difficult, but does take time.
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Old May 10, 16, 2:01 pm
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Things went smoothly. My GPS wanted to take me into SFO from the 101, but luckily I saw the signs that said to get off at the San Bruno exit, not the SFO exit. No problems once in there.
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Old May 10, 16, 2:02 pm
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Originally Posted by Lost View Post
The couple of times I've rented Avis at SFO their staff have been sllooowwww So add in an extra 20 minutes just in case.

But other than that, there's nothing weird or special about it.
The return staff was pretty fast...almost too fast where I felt rushed when I was trying to check for my personal belongings. But on the inside where people were picking up their cars, those lines looked horribly long and slow.
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Old May 10, 16, 5:38 pm
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Originally Posted by cheaptom View Post
The return staff was pretty fast...almost too fast where I felt rushed when I was trying to check for my personal belongings. But on the inside where people were picking up their cars, those lines looked horribly long and slow.
Good to hear
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Old Aug 22, 16, 12:44 am
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I wanted to update this with my recent experience, as I expect many people would like to know exactly how much time to allocate to the return process.

Returning on a Tuesday morning, it took me exactly 23 minutes from the entrance to the rental car return lot to the TSA checkpoint in United Terminal 3. This is about the absolute minimum time you can expect as I did not have to wait for the parking lot elevator or the train. If you are going to the international terminal, you can subtract 4 minutes as the train stops there first.

Ergo, to be safe I would recommend that you add 25-30 minutes to your calculations if you plan to return a rental car rather than be dropped off directly at the terminal, and considering that the train stops in the following order: Int->T1->T2->T3
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