Car Hire at McCarran International Airport
This information is correct as of August 2015.
Want to enjoy the casinos and commercial attractions in Las Vegas but also want to go stargazing without all the light pollution? It's not impossible thanks to the companies providing car rental services at McCarran International Airport! Travelling independently via self-drive makes it possible for you to decide and commit to where you want to go, without having to succumb to the timetable of public transport.
Where to hire a car at McCarran International Airport
As the primary commercial airport serving Las Vegas Valley and Clark County, McCarran International Airport offers a wide range of options for car rental. The offices aren't located in airport premises though; the McCarran Rent-A-Car Center is a separate building located 3 miles from the airport. Shuttle buses depart every five minutes from outside West doors 51-54 and East doors 55-58 at the airport to the centre. Companies represented at the centre are Hertz, Zipcar, National, Alamo, Dollar, Thrifty, Enterprise, Advantage, Payless, Firefly, E-Z Rent-A-Car, Avis, and Budget.
What to expect when hiring a car from McCarran International Airport
McCarran International Airport is located in the unincorporated area of Paradise in Clark County, 8 km south of downtown Las Vegas. The McCarran Rent-A-Car Center is situated at 7135 Gilespie Street, accessible from the airport via Interstates 15 and 215 and the Las Vegas Strip.
To return to the centre using the rental car at the end of your trip, get on the Gilespie Street and follow signposts to the Rental Car Return entrance. The overhead signs indicate the right way to the appropriate car rental company. After returning your car, you may proceed to the main entrance and on the shuttle buses back to either Terminal 1 or Terminal 3 of the airport.
Driving around McCarran International Airport
The street system of Las Vegas is mostly laid out in a north-south and east-west system of roads, in a grid along Public Land Survey System section lines. Dividing the north-south block numbers from east to west are Westcliff Drive, US 95 Expressway, Fremont Street and Charleston Boulevard. The Las Vegas Boulevard, or The Boulevard, is runs along the length of the Las Vegas metropolitan area.
Crossing in downtown Las Vegas are two major freeways, Interstates 15 and Interstate 515/US Route 95. The I-15 runs north and connects the city to Los Angeles, while I-515 runs southeast to Henderson. US 95 links Las Vegas to north-western Nevada, and also runs south from US 93 through far eastern California.
Getting to your destination
Grand Canyon National Park
The famous Grand Canyon is a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the most popular tourist attractions in the country. The park is divided into two parts, the North Rim and the South Rim, the latter of which is more accessible from Las Vegas. The South Rim features the Grand Canyon Village, the historic Watchtower from which visitors can get a great view over the canyon and the Colorado River, and the gift shop/snack bar Hermits Rest.
The Grand Canyon is actually only some four to five hours away from Las Vegas via US-93 S and I-40 E. It is also possible to take I-15 N.
Valley of Fire State Park
The Valley of Fire State Park is the oldest state park in Nevada. The almost 17,000-ha area is characterized by the red sandstone formations, or the Aztec Sandstone. It is named Valley of Fire due to the illusion that makes the formations appear to be on fire when reflecting the rays of the sun.
Valley of Fire State Park is accessible via I-15 N and Valley of Fire Highway.
Many tourists who travel to Las Vegas also stop by Los Angeles, or the City of Angels. This global city provides a diverse range of entertainment, and is best known as the home of Hollywood. Attractions include the Museum of Contemporary Art, Santa Monica Pier, Walt Disney Concert Hall, Dolby Theatre, La Brea Tar Pits, Disneyland, and TCL Chinese Theatre.
Los Angeles can be accessed by road via I-15 S and CA-14 S.
Reviews for McCarran International Airport
5 stars | Steve DeAngelo
The McCarran International Airport (LAS) is the most efficient, easy to use airport in the country, and maybe the world. I especially liked the large video screens in the airport touting the latest events and happenings in Las Vegas.
4 stars | John Abdou
All the amenities of convenience that a small airport should have. Free wifi, good eateries, clean bathrooms, and easy access to ground transportation.
4 stars | Quia Querisma
You know you're in Vegas the moment you hit this place. Slot machines greet you, and I also received a tweet from the Liquor Libarary (the airport's onsite liquor store) welcoming me to town, and inviting me to stop by. I've always found McCarran to be clean and efficient once you get past TSA. The lines can be staggeringly long at security. TSA Pre-check is highly advised.