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    Car hire in Phoenix at the lowest prices

    Blessed with over 300 days of glorious sunshine, Phoenix is the largest metropolitan centre in the vast desert area of southern Arizona. A place for sightseeing, alfresco dining, playing golf and year-round hiking, the city is a master of style and reinvention that’s grown from a small settlement for the ancient Hohokam people over 2,000 years ago to the fifth most populous city in the whole of the USA.

    Home to no less than 22 American Indian tribes, Phoenix boasts a prime location in the heart of the Sonoran Desert, one of the greenest deserts in North America thanks to a generous amount of rainfall. Its refined mix of chic resorts (around 40), desert golf courses (over 200 of them), imposing mountain peaks and sweeping plains is tailor-made for the modern tourist, especially those looking to get the most from their car hire in Phoenix.

    The city offers a great diversity of tourist attractions with museums to suit every taste, including the Heard Museum (Native American), Desert Botanical Garden (the world's largest collection of desert plants), Taliesin West (home to the famous Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation), Phoenix Art Museum (south-west USA's largest art museum), Fleischer Museum (American Impressionism), Arizona Science Center, Hall of Flame (featuring the world's largest collection of fire-fighting equipment), Pueblo Grande Museum and Cultural Park (Native American) and the Musical Instrument Museum (MIM).

    With over 65 years of experience providing quality car hire at the cheapest market prices, Auto Europe now operates in over 180 countries around the world, with pick-up points available in around 24,000 different locations. There are numerous places to collect your car rental in Phoenix, most notably Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport and several convenient downtown locations. For help with your booking or any queries you might have, please feel free to call our reservation specialists on tel. +441233225114, who are ready to serve you seven days a week. Visit our Phoenix car hire reviews page to see the ratings and comments posted by previous Auto Europe customers in the city.

    How is the traffic in Phoenix?

    Despite the efficiency of the city's public transport system, you'll find that the best way of getting around is with your car rental in Phoenix. Unlike in other big cities, there's no dedicated commuter train from the suburbs to the centre, so it's best to avoid using the main roads during the morning and evening rush hours. Phoenix is America's fifth-largest city so it's customary to find plenty of traffic on the roads, although there's a growing trend towards the building of more pedestrianised streets and park & ride parking facilities in a bid to reduce congestion downtown and in other parts of the inner city. For an overview and more specific information about getting around Arizona and other parts of America by car, please consult our handy USA driving guide.

    Where can I park my car hire in Phoenix?

    Phoenix is a large, spread-out city so most people commute by car. Fortunately, the city has plenty of parking opportunities, including a dozen or so park-and-ride locations where visitors can park their car hire in Phoenix free of charge and use the Valley Metro Rail service for city sightseeing. Be warned that overnight parking is prohibited and could result in the vehicle being towed away. Downtown Phoenix boasts more than 25,000 parking spaces, making it a very car-friendly city centre. Besides public parking garages, there are numerous parking meter spots, which are enforced every day including weekends and holidays from 8am to 10pm. When parking, remember to keep an eye out for signs indicating time limitations or loading/unloading zones because you don’t want your downtown souvenir to be a ticket! Some of the city's best car parks can be found on Monroe Street, Van Buren Street, Washington Street, 5th Street and Central Avenue.

    Phoenix Airport

    Dubbed America's Friendliest Airport, Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport is the main airport for the Greater Phoenix area. It serves more than 40 million passengers a year and connects with more than 100 domestic and international destinations, putting it firmly in the list of America's 10 busiest airports. With about 1,200 daily flights (almost half of which are non-stop), Phoenix Airport is a very popular hub for people exploring Arizona and the neighbouring states of Nevada, Utah, Colorado, New Mexico and California. Located in Maricopa County, just 3 miles south-east of downtown Phoenix, it has three terminals and a total of 116 aircraft gates plus an extensive range of on-site services and facilities, including several shops, a variety of restaurants, a chapel and a museum.

    Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport (PHX)
    Address: 3400 E Sky Harbor Blvd, Phoenix, AZ 85034
    Phone: 602-273-3300

    What to do in Phoenix

    Rising where the Sonoran Desert meets the Superstition Mountains, Phoenix and its dynamic urban centre - the so-called Valley of the Sun - is filled with more tourist attractions and sightseeing opportunities than most of the other places in the USA. With everything from speakeasies and hipster coffee bars to America’s largest municipal park, you'll need at least a couple of days to see the highlights and more than a week to cover it all. Our guide is just a taste of some of the things waiting for you in this magnificent city;

    • Heard Museum : One of Arizona's must-see cultural attractions, here you'll find a fine portrayal of Native American art and culture plus an impressive introduction to Arizona’s original inhabitants, including the largest kachina doll collection (donated in part by the late Arizona Senator Barry Goldwater) of any museum in the country. It's also a regular venue for first-class events like the annual Indian Fair & Market held in spring.

    • Wells Fargo History Museum: A fun introduction to the Wild West with a wide range of interesting exhibits including an authentic 19th-century stagecoach, a replica stagecoach you can climb aboard, antique guns, a huge gold nugget and one of the largest collection of western-themed art in the country.

    • Heritage Square: One of the central points of the city, Heritage Square's group of historic homes and buildings have been tastefully converted into a fine collection of museums, restaurants and bars, making it a popular place for a leisurely stroll, especially on a warm summer's evening.

    • Phoenix Art Museum: Featuring an extensive display of some 19,000 works by both American and International artists, the impressive Phoenix Art Museum is a must for culture vultures visiting the city. Besides its permanent collection, the museum hosts films, lectures, concerts and other special events throughout the year.

    • Musical Instrument Museum : Featuring 7,000 musical instruments from around two hundred different countries, MIM is a top attraction for lovers of all types of music and how it is played. The majority of instruments are enhanced by state-of-the-art audio and video technologies that allow guests to see the instruments, hear their sounds, and observe them being played in their original contexts.

    • Roosevelt Row: Phoenix has a rich creative tradition and this is well expressed all along this street in the form of colourful and sometimes very expressive murals, art galleries, atmospheric bars and cafés, alternative-style shops and boutiques and some of the finest and often quirkiest eateries in the city.

    Best day trips with my car rental in Phoenix

    Phoenix is the perfect base from which to explore the best and the rest of Arizona, one of the world's most magnificent tourist regions. The city and its surroundings is a recreational nirvana with a fine array of sights and exciting outdoor activities to be enjoyed with your rent a car in Phoenix, some of which are listed here;

    The Apache Trail

    Running by Tonto National Forest and three desert lakes, as well as the curiously-named Superstition Mountains, the world-famous Apache Trail was first used by the Salado Indians as far back as 900 AD. Comprising some of America's most spectacular desert terrain, it hugs the mountain foothills as it dips and turns through lush green canyons offering outstanding photograph opportunities at every turn. A drive along the trail is a five-hour round-trip from Phoenix, leaving plenty of time for a picnic en route.

    Superstition Mountains

    The Superstition Mountains on the eastern edge of Phoenix offer an abundance of hiking and camping opportunities. Comprising 160,000 acres and some 9,000 years of history, they have a maximum elevation of 6,266 feet from which head-spinning views await those who make it to the top.


    Thanks to its stunning red-rock formations, Sedona is a popular day-trip destination at any time of the year, especially in autumn when the leaves start to fall off the trees and turn the landscape a golden orange colour. The road north to Sedona passes through the village of Oak Creek to access Highway 89A and on this gently winding stretch of road you'll find the Oak Creek Canyon Vista Overlook where some of the most head-spinning vistas can be enjoyed.

    Geographic Information & History

    Located about 150 miles north of the US-Mexico border, Phoenix is generally flat and surrounded by low mountain and extensive desert plains. The Salt River runs westward through the city but the riverbed is often dry or contains little water due to large irrigation diversions. The inner city is nicknamed Valley of the Sun because of its location in the Salt River Valley. Phoenix has long, hot summers and short, mild winters due to the fact that it is located in one of the world's sunniest regions. With almost 4,000 hours of wonderful sunshine each year, the city's is proud of its claim to be the sunniest city on Earth!

    For over 2,000 years, the fiercely-independent Hohokam people occupied the land that would eventually become the city of Phoenix. Whilst there, they created about 135 miles of irrigation canals, making the desert land mostly arable, the paths of which would later become used for the modern Arizona Canal, Central Arizona Project Canal and the Hayden-Rhodes Aqueduct. The Hohokam also carried out extensive trade with the nearby Anasazi, Mogollon and Sinagua peoples, as well as with the more distant Mesoamerican civilizations. Between 1300 and 1450 AD, periods of drought and severe floods led to the Hohokam civilization's abandonment of the area.

    The city's more recent history begins with a man called Jack Swilling, a veteran of the American Civil War. In 1867, while travelling through the area he recognised the land's potential for farming and duly formed a small community that same year about four miles east of the Phoenix we know today. The town subsequently grew and in the 1880s, boosted by the arrival of the Valley railroad, Phoenix began to emerge as a bustling centre for trade and commerce. Phoenix has continued its rate of development and today remains the fastest-growing metropolitan area in the USA, surpassed only by Las Vegas.

    How to get around Phoenix

    There are many ways to explore the city, including public transport and other services such as taxis and ride-hailing companies like Uber, Lyft, and zTrip. The 24-hour SuperShuttle Airport service makes travelling between Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport quick and easy, with mobile check-in possible. The driver-less trains transport people to the airport from the 44th Street/Washington Street station. The Valley Metro Light Rail runs across downtown to Tempe and Mesa in the east. Stations are easily accessible and are close to some of the city's top attractions, such as the Heard Museum, Phoenix Art Museum, Arizona Science Center, Chase Field and Talking Stick Resort Arena. More than just a way of getting from A to B in downtown Phoenix, Valley Metro is a great way to beat traffic and save driving costs. With plenty of fine dining, hidden coffee shops, sports venues and arts and culture events happening year-round, Valley Metro is also a fantastic (not to mention pocket-friendly) way to see everything Phoenix has to offer. Amtrak's southernmost railway route called Sunset Limited also stops in nearby Maricopa.

    Metro and Rail

    Opened in 2008, Valley Metro is a 30-mile stretch of light rail connecting Phoenix with Mesa and Tempe. It consists of a single line serving about 40 stations in total, starting in Phoenix at the 19th Ave/Dunlap station before turning south on 19th Avenue for 4 miles. It then turns eastward on Camelback Road for 2.5 miles before turning south onto Central Avenue where it continues all the way into Downtown Phoenix. At Roosevelt, the line splits into one-way segments with the Mesa-bound line running south along First Avenue before turning east on Jefferson Street. Likewise, the Dunlap-bound portion of the line starts at 26th Street on Washington Street before turning north on Central Avenue. Both tracks rejoin east of 24th Street on Washington Street continuing past Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, which connects with the PHX Sky Train. After that it turns south-east to cross into Tempe. Heading southward, it joins Apache Boulevard before going in an eastward direction, with Apache being renamed to Main Street in Mesa where the light rail line ends at Mesa Drive.


    Phoenix offers a comprehensive bus service throughout the majority of the metro area. Valley Metro buses link more than a dozen parts of the city with express routes to downtown Phoenix, including Scottsdale, Mesa and Tempe. Bus frequencies are around 15 minutes on average and the total of 60 routes run from early morning until evening, with all routes running Monday to Friday and the majority also on Saturday. Sunday services can be limited outside the main tourist seasons.


    There's a good selection of taxi services available both at the airport and in and around downtown Phoenix. AAA/Yellow Cab, Apache and Mayflower are all regular and reliable companies running 24 hours a day, seven days a week, while a growing number of lower-cost taxi options such as Uber are catering for tourists and local residents alike.

    Useful links

    Phoenix Tourism