The Greater Orlando Airport Authority is spending $60 million to allow more rental car companies into parking garages convenient to the two airport passenger terminals. This Summer, Thrifty Car Rental was among the first of the offsite firms to move back into the garages on either side of the main terminal. Between now and Spring of 2010, the rest of the remaining major car-rental companies will join them, allowing almost all arriving passengers to collect their luggage and walk next door to their rental car.
Orlando International is the busiest airport in Florida, with more than 35 million passengers moving through its 90 arrival and departure gates every year. It is the third largest airport in the nation in terms of size, and the 23rd busiest in the world.
According to a recent article in the Orlando Sentinal, rental car fees paid to the Airport Authority amount to more than $55 million per year, nearly one-fifth of their total annual income. That amount is expected to increase by several million dollars next year as a result of the new on-site locations.
Several of the companies had moved their rental facilities offsite in the 1990s as they outgrew space available for fueling and washing near the parking garages. The Airport Authority is now more than doubling the space available for such activities, by relocating a large vehicle parking area south of one terminal and expanding a current fueling, washing and queuing area north of the other.
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