Lyon is one of the gateway airports to the ski resorts across the French Alps. Being this close to some of the best ski resorts in the world, of course there are several options to transfer from Lyon Airport to the ski resorts.
Most ski resorts are over 2 hours transfer time from Lyon, and if you’re driving it’s a pretty simple autoroute into the mountains near Grenoble and then an ascent through the mountains.
But if you’re weighing up your options, you’ll likely be looking at different transfer methods depending on ease, budget and even time of day.
So, lets find out how to transfer from Lyon to the Alps.
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Which are the closest ski resorts to Lyon?
There are a number of top class ski resorts within a reasonable transfer time from Lyon Airport. The closest ski resorts to Lyon include:
- Chamrousse (approx 135 Km, about 2 hours)
- Les Deux Alpes (approx 193 Km, about 2 hours)
- Val Thorens (approx 200 Km, about 2 hours 15 minutes)
- La Plagne (approx 204 Km, about 2 hours 30 minutes)
- Courchevel (approx 185 Km, about 2 hours 20 minutes)
- Tignes (approx 220 Km, about 2 hours 50 minutes)
- La Rosière (approx 220 Km, about 2 hours 50 minutes)
- Meribel (approx 190 Km, about 2 hours 30 minutes)
- Les Menuires (approx 195 Km, about 2 hours 40 minutes)
- Alpe d’Huez (approx 196 Km, about 2 hours)
- Val d’Isere (approx 230 Km, about 2 hours 50 minutes)
- Méribel (approx 189 Km, about 2 hours 30 minutes)
- Les Arcs (approx 215 Km, about 2 hours 35 minutes)
- Valloire (approx 185 Km, about 2 hours 15 minutes)
- Les Saisies (approx 179 Km, about 2 hours 10 minutes)
- Chamonix (approx 226 Km, about 2 hours 30 minutes)
- Megeve (approx 183 Km, about 2 hours)
- Le Grand Bornand (approx 169 Km, about 1 hour 50 minutes)
- La Clusaz (approx 171 Km, about 1 hour 50 minutes)
- Albiez Montrond (approx 153 Km, about 2 hours)
For many of these, there is a crossover with Geneva Airport, which also serves the French Alps. However, you might prefer to fly into Lyon for a few resorts such as Les Deux Alpes, Alpe d’Huez or the Three Valleys ski area as the transfer is slightly faster from Lyon Airport.
That being said, the speed of the transfer from Lyon depends on the service you use.
Buses from Lyon to the Alps
If you’re looking for the cheapest transfer options from Lyon to the Alps ski resorts, it will probably be with a bus service. While there are some direct buses, many of the bus services will require a change in Grenoble or Chambery for onward connections.
A one way ticket from Lyon to the alpine resorts by bus can cost around £15, depending where you’re headed. The best bet is to check times and availability on Busbud.
Busbud is a bus search site which allows you to find the cheapest ticket from all the available providers offering that route. And it will also bundle the connection in too, so you don’t need to faff about buying multiple tickets or trying to work out which bus will actually get you there.
Car hire from Lyon to the Alps
If you want the freedom to come and go as you please then the obvious option is car hire. This is obviously perfect if you have a family in tow as you can just get everyone strapped in and go from Lyon airport to your ski resort with the least amount of headaches. In theory anyway.
The downside to car rental is of course the cost. You’ll likely splash out around £300 for a small compact for a week. And that doesn’t include car seats for smaller kids, or a bigger vehicle for all the stuff you had to bring.
The cost of fuel will also need to be factored in. And, as this is France, you will also need to pay tolls for the expressways.
Around this part of France the autoroute tolls can be quite expensive – expect to pay around €40 to €50 each way in tolls.
Remember also that driving in ski resorts can be challenging, with ice and snow on the road and often crazy French driving on those zig zagging mountain ascents. While you do get snow tyres, if you’re not used to driving in ice and snow then you might want to carefully consider this option.
But the benefits of getting from A to B as fast as possible are obviously priceless. Check out car rentals from Lyon Airport on our handy widget below….
Private transfer from Lyon to the Alps
The easiest way to go from Lyon Airport to the Alpine resorts, including Les Deux Alpes or Alpe d’Huez is to book a private transfer. You can then enjoy the pleasure of sitting back while your driver does the hard work, and you can just watch the world go by (or get sucked into Instagram, most likely).
A private transfer from Lyon to Alpe d’Huez will cost around £380 for up to three people, return. For two people, this works out at £190.
If you have a bigger group it will be more efficient. 8 people in a minivan to Alpe d’Huez or Les Deux Alpes will cost around £750, which if you fill the van up works out around £95 per person, return.
The price will vary depending on your time of departure, destination, party size, any equipment, baby seats or any other extras.
The best thing to do is check out Get Transfer with your party size, arrival times and exact dates to get an accurate cost of a private transfer.
Is your transfer from Lyon included?
Some ski package providers will actually include the ski transfer in the price of the package. Ski World, for example, offer transfer and flights as part of their ski all in package, so you don’t need to worry about how to get from airport to resort.
If you’re booking with another provider, check and see if they can include transfers as an additional fee. Often if they have many people in the same resort, they can offer affordable bus transfers for multiple guests.
However, if you’re looking for cheap ski packages to the Three Valleys, you’ll probably need to pay extra for your transfer.
Which is the best transfer from Lyon to the Alps?
Choosing the best option for transferring from Lyon to Alpe d’Huze or Les Deux Alpes will depend on your requirements and your budget. Personally, I always prefer the private transfer option, but if you’re travelling as a solo or couple, it might not be the most cost effective method.
Check out my review of Les Deux Alpes over at Gone Travelling.
And, actually… I’ve just done one here too: Les Deux Alpes review.