Alexandria Airport Car Rental

Alexandria International Airport Background…

The airport started in 1939 as an emergency landing strip for a nearby airport called Esler Regional Airport. However, as World War II became a reality, the airstrip was taken over by the Department of Defense and turned into Alexandria Army Air Base. Throughout the war it was used to train fighter and bomber pilots. The base stayed open until after the Cold War, when the United States started looking into getting rid of some of its surplus of air bases. The base was just going to be closed, but the City of Alexandria feared the economic impact that would have on the region and decided to buy the airport instead.

The airport opened in 1993 with its current name and was offering regularly scheduled commercial flights to Dallas, Houston, Atlanta, and Memphis by 1996. After the attacks on September 11th, 2001 the airport once again took on a militaristic role and served a major supporting role in the transportation of troops and supplies to Iraq and Afghanistan. However, there are no regularly scheduled international flights to or from the airport at this time.

Alexandria International Airport terminal, Alexandria, Louisiana

Alexandria International Airport Car Rentals…

The airport is supported by four nationally acclaimed rental companies, including Avis, Budget, Hertz, and National. All four on-site counters can be found on the first level of the main terminal in the baggage claim area. While the airport’s maps are a little crude, they can be found on directories located throughout the airport and used to find the current location of the counters. You should check the newly updated directory when you land due to the massive amount of changes the airport authority has planned for Alexandria International Airport.

After getting your keys for the rental, you will find that the rental vehicles are situated just to the South of the terminal.  That means that when you walk out of the front of the main entrance/exit, you should turn to your right, and the rentals will be parked in their own lot adjacent to the terminal.

Alexandria Airport Car Rental Directions to Alexandria…

Alexandria is located almost exactly in the center of Louisiana and has been around since the early nineteenth century. The easiest way out of the airport is to take Frank Andrews Blvd (the road that you will be on as you pull out of the parking lot) out of the airport until you come to the stop-sign on Chappie James Ave.  Turn right on Chappie James Ave and as it curves to the left it will then turn into England Dr.  Drive for about a half-mile until you approach a ‘Y’.  Stay left on the ‘Y’, or LA-498 E/Airbase Rd.  Drive for a little over a mile and then merge onto I-49 S toward Alexandria.

Alexandria Airport Car Rental Return…

WARNING: Refueling is a pain. There are not gas stations, at least at this moment, right at the airport. The closest options are on Coliseum Blvd, Old Boyce Road, and N Bolton Ave.  But the best gas stations are to be found when exiting off of I-49, coming back from Alexandria.  As you exit and travel back to the airport, you will see a Texaco and Exxon to your right, and a Chevron to your left – sitting behind a McDonald’s. 

After filling up the tank, head back to the airport.  It will take you about 3.5 miles to get back to the airport after filling up off of I-49.  When you get back to the airport, simply find that car rental lot on the opposite side of the terminal and park your vehicle.  Make sure that you deliver the keys to the agent and you're good to go.

Alexandria La 1954 Goldring

The Future…

Stay weary of the layout of the airport and its surrounding area. If you check out the airport’s official website you’ll see a nine chapter Master Plan that outlines more additions and expansions than I care to list. Just know that the plans are going to be carried out in the next decade and could drastically change the layout of the airport, rendering this article obsolete. Although I didn’t seen any plans to change the rental car process.

Other Car Rental Options at Alexandria International Airport…

Alexandria, Louisiana is a fairly sizable city with no real organization in its layout. The city is easy to get lost in and definitely justifies paying an extra ten to fifteen dollars for a state-of-the-art GPS system. All the rental companies offer GPS systems for their vehicles that will save you time and money by helping you avoid traffic and construction congestions.
 
Source: Alexandria Airport

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