About Tulsa International Airport (TUL)
Address: 7777 E Apache St, Tulsa International Airport, Tulsa, 74115 2346, Ok, Ok
Serving the self-proclaimed “Oil Capital of the World”, Tulsa International Airport (TUL) is located roughly 9 miles (14.6 km) northeast of downtown Tulsa. Airport car rentals from all major companies are located on-site in Schwab Hall of the terminal.
Situated in the heart of the Midwest prairie, Tulsa has a small town vibe with a big city profile. Unlike most metropolitan areas in the U.S., public transportation has not been developed beyond a bare-bones bus system, and thus, the city and surrounding areas are accessible only by private vehicle. Visitors to Tulsa will find it necessary to rent a car. Fortunately, the city was planned with the automobile in mind, so you’ll find streets laid out in north-south-east-west orientation, with the only deviation found in the city center.
The vast majority of major intersections in the Tulsa Metro area were planned on a 1-mile by 1-mile grid, which almost negates the need for a GPS. However, the prevalence of one-way streets suggests an on-board navigation system wouldn’t be a bad idea. Central Tulsa is framed by a series of freeways that facilitate easy navigation around town. Avenues run north-south in alphabetical order, while numbered streets run east-west. Downtown streets lie at a 25-degree angle to the rest of Tulsa, due to its origins as a river city — long before cars became the primary mode of transportation.
The major routes in Tulsa are Interstates 44 and 244, US Routes 64 and 75, and State Route 51 (also known as Broken Arrow Expressway). For road trips to Oklahoma City, it’s a 112-mile (176-km) straight shot down I-44.
Choosing your car
All the trusted name brand car hire companies have rental counters in Tulsa International Airport. Alamo, Avis, Budget, Dollar, Enterprise, Hertz, National, and Thrifty are in direct competition for your business, so finding a great deal on your car is never an ordeal. It all boils down to your travel itinerary. For strictly city driving, you can’t go wrong with a no-frills economy Mitsubishi. Compact and economy Ford sedans are ideal for couples and small families. Mazda intermediate and Chevrolet fullsize sedans are perfect for road trips. For safe travel in winter conditions, rent a Nissan SUV. For larger families and groups of 5 or more passengers, the Dodge 7-9 seater minivan is the people mover of choice.
Tips and advice
Congestion is common at the four corners of freeway interchanges that frame the downtown area. Otherwise, Tulsa traffic is as laid-back as the people are friendly.
There is exactly one traffic circle in all of Tulsa, located at the intersection of Main Street and West 5th Avenue in the city center.
Generally speaking, it’s safe to travel anywhere in Tulsa during the day. At night, visitors should try to avoid North Tulsa and downtown near the bus depot.
Tulsa is surrounded by gently rolling hills and forestland, making for some delightfully scenic road trips.
The State of Oklahoma has a “Left Lane Law” that applies to any road with more than two lanes in any direction. The gist of it is, the left lane is for passing only. If you’re driving in the left lane of a highway for extended periods, you could be tagged with a $250 fine.
Drivers from foreign countries do not need an International Driver’s Permit (IDP) to operate a car hire in Oklahoma.