Car Rental vs. Taxi
It is a personal preference as to whether or not to rent a vehicle. Some people like to have "wheels" so they can go where they want, when they want. If you wanted to break up the week with touring and beach time, you would need to rent a car for a full week.
Rental agencies at the airport include: Alamo Car Rental, Amigo Rent a Car, Avis Rent a Car, Budget Rent a Car,
Dollar Car Rental, Econo Car Rental, Economy Car Rental, Hertz Car Rental, National Car Rental, Thrifty Car Rental. Rentals at the airport are traditionally a bit more expensive due to additional airport sanctioned taxes. The advantage of renting at the airport vs. the hotel is not having to pay for transfers or a taxi from the airport to your resort. If needed, most agencies provide pick up and drop off service to hotels. Some of the larger hotels also have car rental agency offices right on premises.
Dh and I used our rental car a good deal on our first two visits to the island. We went, here, there and everywhere, seeing all of the sites. During our third trip, on the second day, we decided we were not going to be leaving the beach, so with the exception of dinner out each night, it did not pay to have the rental sitting in the parking lot. We turned in the rental car.
You cannot beat the deal of a taxi approximately $25 each way between the resort and the airport for a maximum of five people. This is less than the price of a rental car for the day. The bus can be used for short jaunts or shopping trips
If you are not "beach people", first time visitors to the island in particular may want to rent a car to get around and see what activities there are. If you enjoy gambling you can use the car to get you from casino to casino.
Another consideration in deciding whether or not to rent a vehicle is that if you take a one day jeep tour or any other excursions, many times transportation is provided to and from your hotel.
Dh and I personally have settled into a routine of renting a 4 x 4 or FWD SUV for one day during our trip in order to take a day to travel around the island visiting the coastline, various beaches such as Baby Beach, snorkeling and touring Arikok National Park. That evening we will use the vehicle to drive to a dinner destination furthest from our resort. Some of these restaurants would include those in Savaneta such as the Flying Fishbone, Old Man & the Sea or Marina Pirata. Savaneta is a hefty, $62 round-trip taxi ride
round-trip from the high rise resort area.
A great option is to rent a vehicle for the first 3 days of your trip. You will have transportation from the airport to your resort and then you can use the vehicle for touring and seeing the sights, exploring the beaches, snorkeling and shopping before settling down into a beach routine and enjoying the rest of your vacation. I didn't suggest the last three days of your trip and drop off the vehicle at the airport since you would probably want to make the most of those last days relaxing on the beach.
If you are only going to use the car to go out to dinner each evening, unless you are heading to Savaneta or San Nicolas, for five people or less, a taxi is going to be the least expensive way to go.