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Travelling to the Alps
This page has been designed to make your travel plans as easy as possible, and we update information and links often. For EU residents there is no requirement for visas to travel to any of the Alpine countries, but other nationals should check with their embassies before travelling. Note that some of our itineraries cross borders, so you should ensure any visa allows for this. Sometimes the closest airport to a resort is in a different country, such as Geneva airport being closest for Chamonix and Courmayeur.
Links
EasyJet at Geneva airport
Flying out to the Alps
The resorts across the Alps that we operate trips to, are well served by international airports. Select your resort from the list below, and you may find that the closest airport is actually across a country border. Equally it's worth checking flight prices in a variety of airports, to find the best deal and flight times to suit you.

France

Chamonix - One of the busiest resorts in the Alps in terms of our trips, and well served by flights to Geneva airport across the border in Switzerland, but it is also highly accessible via Turin or Milan airports in Italy then taking the bus through the Mont Blanc tunnel to Chamonix from Courmayeur. We've even had guests arrive catching the cable car across from Italy. From Geneva airport, it is just a 75 minute airport transfer to Chamonix, very well served by transfer bus companies, and public transport. If you wish to avoid Switzerland for any reason, internal flights from France land in Geneva French sector.


Maira - The closest airport is Turin, from which an airport transfer is incuded to the Maira valley, though you could also consider flights to Milan, and take the bus / train to Turin from there.


Switzerland

Zermatt - Our busiest Swiss resort is easily accessed by train from Geneva airport, but you can also consider Zurich, and in the winter months there is are flights to Sion airport too. Zermatt is car free, so the most efficient airport transfers are by train to arrive in Zermatt Bahnhoff station.


Verbier - The airport options are as per Zermatt, followed by taking the train transfer option to Le Chable, where the train station is next to the cable car that ascends into Verbier village.

St Bernard - The airport options are as per Zermatt or Chamonix, followed by taking the train transfer option to Martigny or Orsierres if staying in Switzerland. Check with us first about where to meet your guide.


Italy

Courmayeur - This is our busiest Italian resort, and the closest airport is Turin, but there are more frequent flights to Milan, especially in the summer. From either, there are regular buses to Courmayeur. It is also possible to fly to Geneva in Switzerland, then get a transfer to Chamonix, and from there the regular bus through the Mont Blanc road tunnel. Some guests have even taken the cable car across from Chamonix to Courmayeur.


Aosta - This is accessed via the same airports and transfers as Courmayeur, as all the airport buses stop at Aosta bus station. It is also possible to take the train to Aosta, rather than a bus, if preferred.


Gressoney - If travelling direct to this resort, follow the travel advice to Aosta (see above), and from there you can take the local bus service up the side valley to reach Gressoney village.


Cogne - If travelling direct to this resort, follow the travel advice to Aosta (see above), and from there you can take the local bus service up the side valley to reach Cogne village.


Cortina d'Ampezzo - The closest airport is Venice, from which there is a regular bus service to Cortina. Alternatively you could consider flying to Milan, or possibly Turin, and taking trains from those to Venice.


Austria

Ishgul - Zurich airport is the closest major airport, but closer still is Innsbruck. Further away, you could also consider Munich airport. All of these have good train links to Landeck, and from there by bus to the resort.

Landeck - As for Ishgul, the airports of Innsbruck, Zurich and Munich, all have excellent rail links to Landeck, where there is a major train station.


Vent - As for Ishgul, the airports of Innsbruck, Zurich and Munich are best. From there you can catch the train to Ötztal-Bahnhof train station.


The map below shows all the airports which have airlines operating from there who fly direct to Alpine airports. Short haul indirect flights are offered by Lufthansa and KLM, but we have ignored these, as there are plenty of options for direct flights anyway. It is worth comparing all the prices of the different operators at all your nearby airports to get the best deal. If you live in Manchester, you may get a better deal on Easyjet at Liverpool. Budget airlines aren't always cheapest, as the likes of British Airways and Swiss often have some special deals on offer.

While Chamonix is a course base or starting point, for many of our Alpine trips, it may not be necessary to go to Chamonix or stay there, if any of the following apply. In these cases, contact us, to discuss options;

If you are on an Alpine trip whose key objective is a mountain that straddles a border, which has route options on mountains from that side (e.g. Matterhorn or Mont Blanc), it is possible to arrange to base your course completely in the alternative country, such as a Mont Blanc week based in Courmayeur. Extra charges may apply.

If there are extra visa or travel restrictions for you to the advertised main itinerary option country, but there are viable alternatives on another side of the mountain in an unrestricted country, we may be able to relocate the guiding there for you. Please get in touch to discuss options.
UK airports and airlines flying to the Alps
Contact details of the airlines
Click on the links to connect to t
he airline websites...
 
The map abovw shows all the airports which have airlines operating from there who fly direct to Alpine airports. Short haul indirect flights are offered by Lufthansa and KLM, but we have ignored these, as there are plenty of options for direct flights anyway. It is worth comparing all the prices of the different operators at all your nearby airports to get the best deal. If you live in Manchester, you may get a better deal on Easyjet at Liverpool. Budget airlines aren't always cheapest, as the likes of British Airways and Swiss often have some special deals on offer.

While Chamonix is a course base or starting point, for many of our Alpine trips, it may not be necessary to go to Chamonix or stay there, if any of the following apply. In these cases, contact us, to discuss options;

If you are on an Alpine trip whose key objective is a mountain that straddles a border, which has route options on mountains from that side (e.g. Matterhorn or Mont Blanc), it is possible to arrange to base your course completely in the alternative country, such as a Mont Blanc week based in Courmayeur. Extra charges may apply.

If there are extra visa or travel restrictions for you to the advertised main itinerary option country, but there are viable alternatives on another side of the mountain in an unrestricted country, we may be able to relocate the guiding there for you. Please get in touch to discuss options.
Driving to the Alps
From the Channel ports of Dover, Calais, or Boulogne, it takes approximately eight hours to drive to Chamonix. It is a further 45 minutes from there to Courmayeur. This option can work out as the most economical method of travel for groups of two or more, especially if you are extending your stay to explore the region, and so avoid the cost of a hire car. The motorways in France are toll roads called "Autoroutes" or the "Peage". It costs upwards of £50 each way to travel to Chamonix on the toll roads, but you more than save this in fuel, time and sanity! When you are in Chamonix you can always park for free, and the Reps will show you the best places in terms of safety and proximity to your accommodation. Below is a table outlining the quickest route on the toll roads to Chamonix.
Distance km Instruction Road Toward
0
2.3
7.7
38.3
79.8
111.5
148
181.5
216.9
247.3
270.2
305.4
342.9
381.1
401.1
450.9
492.6
537.1
579.3
605.7
638.2
683.4
686.4
735.9
766.7
800.6
834.4
870.2
890.1
906.1
908.1
Depart Calais, F
At Guines, turn left onto
At A16-A26, turn right onto
At I' Audomarios, stay on
At Bethune, stay on
AtA1-A26, stay on
At Masnieres, stay on
At Gauchy, stay on
At Laon/Chambry, stay on
At Vallee-de-l'Aisne, stay on
At A4-A26, turn left onto
At A4-A26, turn right onto
At Sommesous, stay on
At Troyes-Nord/Charmont, stay on
At A5-A26, bear left onto
At Chateauvillain/Bar-sur-Aube, stay on
At A5-A31, bear right onto
At Til-Chatel, stay on
At Dijon-Sud, stay on
At A6-A31, bear left onto
At Chalon-sur-Safine/le Creusot, stay on
At Macon-Nord, stay on
At A6-A40, turn left onto
At Tossiat, stay on
At Hautville-Lompnes, stay on
At Frangy, stay on
AtA40-A401, stay on
At Cluses-Centre, stay on
At Passy-le-Fayet, bear left onto
Turn left onto
Arrive Chamonix, END
Local road(s)
A16[E402]
A26 [E15] "TOLL ROAD*
A26 [E15] TOLL ROAD*
A26[E15]*TOLLROAD*
A26[E15]*TOLLROAD*
A26 [E15] TOLL ROAD*
A26 [E15]'TOLL ROAD*
A26 [E15] TOLL ROAD*
A26 [E15] TOLL ROAD*
A4 [E17], [E50] TOLL ROAD*
A26 [E17] TOLL ROAD*
A26 [E17] TOLL ROAD*
A26 [E17] TOLL ROAD*
A5 [E17], [E54] TOLL ROAD*
A5 [E17], [E54] TOLL ROAD*
A31 [E17], [E21] TOLL ROAD'
A31 [E17], [E21] TOLL ROAD"
A31 [E17], [E21] TOLL ROAD'
A6[E15]TOLLROAD*
A6 [E15] TOLL ROAD*
A6 [E15] TOLL ROAD*
A40 [E21], [E62] TOLL ROAD'
A40 [E21], [E62] TOLL ROAD'
A40 [E21], [E62] TOLL ROAD'
A40 [E21], [E62] TOLL ROAD'
A40 [E21], [E62] TOLL ROAD'
A40 [E21], [E62] TOLL ROAD'
N506[E25]
Local road(s)
n/a

n/a
n/a
Reims
Reims
Reims
Reims
Reims
Reims
Reims
Reims
Metz
Troyes
Troyes
n/a
n/a
n/a
Dijon
Dijon
n/a
Lyon
Lyon
Lyon
Geneva
Geneva
Geneva
Geneva
n/a
n/a
n/a
n/a
n/a

Got any travel queries?
If you are in any doubt about travel plans to attend an Alpine course, then please get in touch first, before you book any tickets, so we can help you avoid any costly mistakes. E-mail is the best method of contact, as we'll have to look into options for you, but we always aim to reply the same day. Where there is flexibility offered, or desired, of the course base, let us know as soon as possible, so we can put our logistics in place too.
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Airport transfers to Chamonix
Our preferred airport transfers partner between Geneva and Chamonix is Mountain Dropoffs. We work with them for their professionalism, service and reliability. Client discount booking code; ICICHX. This code must be used at the time of booking, as it cannot be applied at a later date. The transfer from Geneva International Airport to Chamonix takes approximately 75 minutes. When booking a return transfer, ensure that you leave at least 3 hours between your pick up time in Chamonix, and the time that your flight is scheduled to depart.
To book a transfer, click on the following link; book airport transfer here. Your accommodation in Chamonix is allocated at the course check in (usually 16:00 on the day the course starts). As the vast majority of our flats are in the pedestrian area of Chamonix Sud, we do not supply an address, as the minibus cannot drive completely to the door. The easiest place to specify to be dropped off / collected from is in front of the Aiguille du Midi cable car station, and there is shelter and toilet facilities there whilst you wait.

Mountain Dropoffs aren't the cheapest transfer company, but in our experience, and that of thousands of clients, they are the most reliable. If you wish to use alternative airport transfer company providers, our next favourites are Ouibus, CVT Chamonix Valley Transfers, and Cham Van. At the cheapest end of the scale, you could consider EasyBus or ChamExpress. For luxury private transfers, we highly recommend Deluxe Transfers.
Train travel to the Alps
The Eurostar train takes only three hours from London Waterloo to Paris Gare du Nord. From there you can walk or take the metro to Gare du Lyon or Gare du Austerlitz to catch the TGV (high speed train) to Bellgarde or Le Fayet. From here you can take the local train direct into Chamonix. The TGV section of the journey takes about three hours, and the final section about 30 minutes. The key variable is the connection time between the links, however the French railway network is very efficient, and is a viable alternative to flying or driving. Tickets can be bought online at SNCF.com, which has an English language section of the website. If you want to take the train to the station that is closest to your accommodation, the 'Aiguille du Midi' station is about 150m from the meeting point, while the main Chamonix train station is about 500m from the accommodation.
Coach travel to the Alps
Without a doubt, this is the most unpopular way to travel to the Alps, but for a direct service between London and Chamonix, it is the only method. The journey takes approximately 15 hours, and the service departs from London Victoria coach station, and arrives at the Chamonix SNCF train station, a seven minute walk from the flat accommodation. You can book the coach service with National Express, or direct with Eurolines coaches.
Any further questions?
A key part of choosing a company is being able to come and talk about your plans with an experienced course advisor face to face. In an increasingly virtual world, we know our clients value speaking to real people, getting open and honest advice. The vast majority of our clients are British, and our office and outdoor store is based in Windermere in the English Lake District.



Get in contact to arrange a meeting, and come in for a coffee to discuss your course in person with a trip advisor. Many people opt for this service, and it is an integral part of what we offer, as we are keen to ensure that you are prepared as possible, and that you select a course that is suitable for you. It makes it easier and more enjoyable for you and us, if you are on the right trip.


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