Car rental company coming to Durant airport

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DURANT, OK -- Air traffic at the Durant Regional Airport is taking off and soon visitors and residents alike will be able to get around a little easier.

At Thursday's city council meeting, council members gave the O.K. for a new car rental business.

One airport employee says every day, visitors ask her about car rentals. So, she expects this service to make travel easier and maybe even boost area business.

This is a familiar sight at the Durant Regional Airport Eaker Field. Whether visitors are landing to have some fun at the Choctaw Casino, Lake Texoma, or here on company time, airport business is booming.

"Since we've built and opened our new air terminal, our air traffic has increased significantly," Durant Mayor Jerry Tomlinson said.

Visitors get here by plane, but airport employee, Sonya Page, said it's the leaving part that becomes difficult.

"We're constantly having a lot of traffic or people that call in needing a car for the day," Page said.

"There's a huge need of transportation here," Wendell Steward said.

It's that need that drove Wendell Steward, president of Oklahoma City Thrifty Car Rental, to bring his company to Durant. He proposed the idea last year, and today he got the O.K. from city council members. They all hope when visitors see this sign, it will help bring them back down the road.

"This will definitely improve everybody you know, coming in having more opportunity to travel," Page said.

Car rentals won't only be exclusive to airport visitors. The public can take advantage of the service too. Steward says depending on how the community responds to the service, there could be 40 to 50 rental cars on hand for anyone to reserve.

"We're a locally owned deal and we wanted to grow with another Oklahoma community," Steward said.

Steward said Thrifty will have cars available to rent by the middle of October.

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