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    Car hire at Southampton Airport - Exploring Southern England

    Southampton Airport currently handles approximately two million passengers a year and is located only 4 miles from Southampton. The airport is actually built on the ruins of a Roman villa which was found on the site in 1925, and the first recorded flight at the airport was in 1910 when a local man landed a single seat monoplane on the meadows. More pionering aviation feats were acomplished when the airport was used for the first test flight of the famous Submarine Spitfire airplane and was used during World War Two. The airport has seen a lot of expansions and updates over the years, the latest in 1993, when the old terminal was replaced by a new modern terminal. The Southampton Airport serves as a gateway to the region.

    Southampton is regarded as the cruise capital of northern Europe and sees a mind-boggling four million cruise passengers a year, many of whom arive and depart at the city's nearby international airport. Highlights in the city are the historic old town, SeaCity Museum, gourmet restaurants and pedestrianised shopping areas. With a car hire from Southampton Airport you will be able to explore the sights at your own pace. Book your car hire with Auto Europe to get the best deal and save on car hire. Auto Europe offers the best service and with one of our car hires you can also visit the nearby cities Bournemouth and Portsmouth.

    For over 65 years, Auto Europe has been a leading company in the car rental industry, with a high-quality service offered at over 24,000 locations in 180 countries worldwide. Our main focus is to offer our clients not only the lowest prices in the market but also a personalised, customer-orientated experience. Featuring a very fast user-friendly booking engine, the Auto Europe website lists the best deals with all the top international and local car hire suppliers, always providing travellers with the right car at the right price in the right location. Our main strengths are the strong relationships we have with all the world's top rent a car suppliers, plus the company's award-winning rental specialists available on +44 123 3225 114 to cater for all your needs, whether it’s a multi-destination itinerary in the south of England or some basic advice on where to go and how to get there. Use our booking engine to make your reservation today in a few quick and easy steps to guarantee the cheapest rates in the global market.For an overview of the high quality of Auto Europe's services in the city, take a look at the comments left by some of our previous customers on our Southampton car hire reviews page.

    Airport Information

    Located 6 kilometres (4 miles) north-east of the city, Southampton Airport was famously built over the remains of a Roman Vila and became operational when the pioneering pilot Edwin Rowland Moon first used the site (formerly known as North Stoneham Farm) as a take-off and landing spot for his monoplane. The airport is owned and operated by AGS Airports who also owns and operates Aberdeen and Glasgow Airports. SOU handles more than two million passengers each year, serving both domestic and international flights to locations such as Dublin, Amsterdam, Paris, Hannover and Alicante. The airport is a busy transport hub and can be easily reached by public transport. There is a dedicated train service which takes passengers to the centre of the city in 10 minutes via its own railway station called Southampton Airport Parkway. For those who prefer driving to the airport and parking their car for the duration of the trip, the airport offers a wide array of on-airport and off-airport parking facilities.

    Southampton Airport (SOU)
    Address: Southampton SO18 2NL, England
    Telephone: +44 344 481 7777
    Airlines operating at Southampton Airport: Located just four miles from the city centre, Southampton Airport is used by several seasonal airline companies, while Eastern Airways, Aurigny, Flybe, KLM, Aer Lingus, Thomson and Thomas Cook fly there throughout the year.

    Where to pick up my car hire at Southampton Airport

    Several global car rental companies operate at Southampton Airport, many of whom have their welcome desks in the Arrivals Hall which you enter just after pasing through the baggage-reclaim area. Before you arive to pick up your car rental at Southampton Airport, it's best to make sure that you have al the necessary documents ready in order to sped up the colection proces, such as your driving licence, credit card, pasport, etc.

    Car hire operating hours

    Avis Car Hire at Southampton Airport Avis at Southampton Airport
    Terminal Building,
    Southampton, England SO18 2NL

    +44 3445446026
    Opening Hours:
    Mon, Tue & Fri 7.30am-8pm, Wed & Thu 7.30am-3pm, Sat 9am-2pm and Sun 3-8pm
    Budget Car Hire at Southampton Airport Budget at Southampton Airport
    Terminal Building,
    Southampton, EnglandSO18 2NL
    +44 3445444085
    Opening Hours:
    Mon, Tue & Fri 7.30am-8pm, Wed & Thu 7.30am-3pm, Sat 9am-2pm and Sun 3-8pm
    Enterprise Car Hire at Southampton Airport Enterprise at Southampton Airport
    Terminal Building
    Southampton, England SO18 2NL

    +44 23 8065 3700
    Opening Hours:
    Mon-Fri 8am-5pm and Sat & Sun 9am-4pm


    The airport has one modern terminal with all the facilities you'd expect from an international airport, albeit a provincial one. The terminal consists of a large, multi-faceted Departures and Arrivals hall with an extensive shopping and dining area convenintly located in the centre of the building. For aircraft, the terminal has twelve stands with none currently equipped with jet bridges. Inside the terminal, there are around twenty check-in desks, some of which are fully automated.

    Airport Facilities

    If you need to kill some time before your flight, you can use some of the airport facilities. SOU has a good selection of eating and shopping units (including the popular World Duty Fre stores, WH Smith, Costa, The Olive Tree Bar) in the main hall, so all passengers whether they are arriving or departing can enjoy a cup of coffee with a piece of cake at the on-site coffee shop or eat a light lunch and a soft drink at one of the restaurants dotted around the terminal. The airport also has several meeting rooms, a post office, information point and several ATMs, as well as Wi-Fi throughout the airport which is free of charge for the first 4 hours.

    How to get to and from Southampton Airport

    It couldn't be easier to pick up or drop off your car hire at Southampton Airport; it's located very close to the centre and the city's road connections are excellent. In fact, all you need to do is simply follow the many signposts to and from the main terminal. SOU is very well located just off the M27 motorway, plus it is also situated close to the M3 motorway. With a cheap car rental from Southampton Airportyou can also reach many other top destinations in the United Kingdom such as London. As in most large cities, the city centre is best avoided during the rush-hour and when large-scale events are taking place such Southampton Football Club's home games. For more tips and advice on getting aroung Southampton and other parts of the UK by car, please take a look at our UK Driving Guide. As a major port in the UK, Southampton is well connected to the city by train. There is a station less than a 2-minute walk from the airport terminal and the train takes only ten minutes to reach Southampton Central Train Station. There is also a taxi rank at the terminal building located right next to the main entrance. Alternatively, you can also travel to the airport by bus with numerous regional and long-distance routes departing from the central bus station.

    Parking Tips

    For travellers who choose to rent a car at Southampton Airport, the next step is to find a place to park it before visiting all the top tourist attractions, which in the case of Southampton city centre is fairly straighforward. Paid on-street parking is in abundance in and around the inner city and public car parks and multi-storey parking facilities can be found all over centre and in the suburbs. Southampton has dozens of car parks available with more currently under construction, both indoors and outdoors. The city's main shopping area is the WestQuay shopping centre which is centrally located and has 4,000 parking spaces, in addition to the large car parks at Western Esplanade and The Marlands shopping centres. If they are full (although they very rarely are), then head for the Ocean Village Marina which is one of Sothampton's main tourist centres and has plenty of parking possibilities. Further out at Southampton Airport there are three types of parking areas available, namely Priority Parking, Short-stay Parking and Long-stay Parking.

    Useful links

    Southampton Airport Information