Skiing near Geneva

Ski holidays in resorts near Geneva airport. Chalets, hotels and apartments.

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Geneva International Airport (code: GVA) is also known by its French name Genève Aéroport and occasionally its former name, Cointrin Airport. It’s been used for commercial flights since 1922 and on last count, operated with 58 different airlines to connect passengers to over 140 destinations worldwide.

This is Switzerland’s second biggest airport with the country’s longest runway. Location-wise, this airport is one of the best - if not THE best - for skiing in Europe. Positioned where southwest Switzerland meets eastern France, it has excellent rail and road connections to a number of Swiss, French and Italian ski resorts.

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Ski holidays near Geneva Airport

Best ski resorts within an hour and a half of Geneva

Chamonix, France
Distance: 88km
Hotels from £506
Apartments from £172
La Clusaz, France
Distance: 68km
Hotels from £729
Apartments from £389
Flaine, France
Distance: 88km
Hotels from £369
Apartments from £196
Les Gets, France
Distance: 84km
Chalets from £1039
Hotels from £963
Apartments from £188
Courmayeur, Italy
Distance: 97km
Hotels from £557
Apartments from £589
La Thuile, Italy
Distance: 114km
Hotels from £649
Apartments from £419
Megeve, France
Distance: 87km
Morzine, France
Distance: 90km
Chalets from £689
Hotels from £638
Apartments from £449
Samoens, France
Distance: 82km
Chalets from £399
Hotels from £540
Apartments from £252
Villars, Switzerland
Distance: 130km

Best ski resorts within two hours of Geneva

Avoriaz, France
Distance: 100km
Chalets from £764
Hotels from £679
Apartments from £184
Nendaz, Switzerland
Distance: 165km
St. Martin De Belleville, France
Distance: 136km
Valmorel, France
Distance: 127km
Chalets from £3129
Hotels from £689
Apartments from £276
Verbier, Switzerland
Distance: 144km
Veysonnaz, Switzerland
Distance: 171km
Meribel & Mottaret, France
Distance: 160km
Chalets from £399
Hotels from £804
Apartments from £194

Best ski resorts within two hours and a half of Geneva

Les Menuires, France
Distance: 144km
Chalets from £1119
Hotels from £643
Apartments from £187
Alpe d'Huez, France
Distance: 210km
Chalets from £739
Hotels from £653
Apartments from £208
Grindelwald, Switzerland
Distance: 240km
Hotels from £629
Apartments from £659
Val Thorens, France
Distance: 170km
Chalets from £739
Hotels from £528
Apartments from £219
Wengen, Switzerland
Distance: 230km
Hotels from £629
Zermatt, Switzerland
Distance: 240km
Hotels from £869
Apartments from £745
Courchevel, France
Distance: 140km
Chalets from £639
Hotels from £633
Apartments from £302
Saas Fee, Switzerland
Distance: 230km
Hotels from £728
Apartments from £449
Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland
Distance: 230km
Interlaken, Switzerland
Distance: 214km

Best ski resorts within three hours of Geneva

La Plagne, France
Distance: 160km
Chalets from £232
Hotels from £409
Apartments from £150
Les Deux Alpes, France
Distance: 220km
Chalets from £742
Hotels from £569
Apartments from £177
Tignes, France
Distance: 180km
Chalets from £257
Hotels from £527
Apartments from £211
Val d'Isere, France
Distance: 200km
Chalets from £445
Hotels from £524
Apartments from £207
Cervinia, Italy
Distance: 190km
Hotels from £642
Apartments from £429
Les Arcs, France
Distance: 174km
Chalets from £639
Hotels from £470
Apartments from £200
La Rosiere, France
Distance: 170km
Chalets from £439
Hotels from £884
Apartments from £253
Murren, Switzerland
Distance: 250km
Hotels from £869
Champoluc, Italy
Distance: 218km
Chalets from £637
Hotels from £759

Where is Geneva Airport?

One of the main things we’re asked is, whether Geneva airport is in France or Switzerland. The answer’s Switzerland, but VERY near the French border, between the Swiss municipality of Le Grand Saconnex and the commune of Ferney-Voltaire in France. The airport’s so close to French territory, it’s able to have a French sector where passengers can land without needing to pass through Swiss customs.

The distance between Geneva airport and downtown Geneva (Switzerland’s second biggest city) is 4km. You can reach the city centre by rail in under 10 minutes.

When landing and taking off on a clear day, the views of Lake Geneva and the Alps are spectacular.

Geneva Airport Terminals

The airport has 2 terminals, Terminal 1 (aka T1 / main terminal) and Terminal 2, which is mainly used by charter flights during the ski season.

Terminal 1 is the newer and larger of the terminals and consists of five piers or concourses for arrivals and departures. Pier F serves as the French side.

Terminal 2 is near the P51 parking lot and can be accessed using the TPG bus - get off at ‘Tour de contrôle’ stop. You can also reach the terminal on foot. From the train station or main terminal, head to Arrivals floor and follow signs for ‘locations de voitures’ / car rental. From the exit, you can reach the terminal via a 200m walkway.

View Geneva airport map

Geneva Airport French side

Airports aren’t usually shared between two countries, so people often ask i) what is the Geneva airport ‘French side’? and ii) is Geneva airport in France or Switzerland? Being in Switzerland but right by the French border allows the airport the unique feature of having a French side as well as a Swiss side. The Swiss side is the larger of the two and used for international flights. The French takes up one fifth of the main terminal and was initially opened so that people could reach destinations in France without having to go through Swiss customs (though this is now less of a hassle than it used to be).

As for how to get to Geneva airport’s French side - if you’ve arrived in on an international flight, follow signs for ‘destination France’ once you reach check in level (after collecting your baggage and going through customs). Flights from within France will almost always already have landed in the French sector, just follow the signs to the French exit when you leave the plane.

When departing, if you’re entering from Switzerland, you can reach the French sector by following signs to ‘destination France’ from check in level. If travelling from France, access is via Ferney-Voltaire road. Look out for signs saying ‘Aéroport secteur France’.

How early to arrive at Geneva Airport

If you’ve already checked in, Geneva Airport recommends you arrive at the very least 1 hour before your flight is scheduled to depart, or 2 hours if you’re travelling over the weekend. If you’re checking in at the airport, give it at least 2 hours (3 for weekends) before the flight sets off. We’d suggest adding some extra time onto that for winter travel just to be on the safe side – there’s plenty to help you pass the time airside with shops to browse selling chocolates, watches, fashion and duty-free goods, besides all sorts of cafes, restaurants and bars.

Most of our ski holiday packages include transfers already, but if yours doesn’t there are numerous companies who offer transfers independently.

Where they pick you up and drop you off will differ from company to company, so check with the provider you’ve booked with.

Taxis can drop you outside check in level and collect you from outside arrivals. Last time we checked, the pick-up fee for taxis at the airport was CHF 1.50.
Uber operate from the P4 car park, by the Montreux Jazz Café.

Car rental is available both in the airport’s Swiss and French sectors. Often you will need to return your vehicle to the side you hired it from, so make sure to leave time for this (though sometimes it’s doable for an extra charge).

In the Swiss sector, the rental desks can be found at arrivals. Usually you’ll need to return your car to the P51 car park, but check with your provider.

While hiring from the Swiss side is usually the most efficient, most people find lower prices when hiring from the French side. You can access the French sector even if you’ve landed in the international part of the airport - follow signs to ‘destination France’ after you’ve collected your baggage, go through customs (who might want to see your car hire contract) and rentals are in a building next to arrivals. Vehicles will often need to be returned to the P21 car park, but double check with the company you’ve hired from.

This is one of Europe’s best-connected airports and has its own train station - Genève-Aéroport – which links the airport to the Swiss rail network and other train stations in Europe. Access from Geneva Airport to the city centre (Geneva-Cornavin station) takes under 10 minutes by train. Trains connect the airport to Swiss ski resorts including Verbier, Nendaz, Saas-Fee, Wengen and Zermatt.

Buses depart from the Check In level, near the rail station. There are bus links to the city centre as well as to French ski resorts including Chamonix, Courmayeur, St Martin de Belleville, Val Thorens, Les Menuires, Courchevel, Meribel, Les Arcs, Val d’Isere, Tignes, Morzine, Avoriaz and Les Gets.

Geneva Airport services

The GVApp is available in English on iOS, Apple watch and Android and lets you follow the status of your flight and navigate through the airport. It also gives live public transport and weather information.

Last time we checked, travellers could access 2 hours of free Wi-Fi.

GVAssistance are on hand for travellers with reduced mobility.

Geneva Airport shops

Besides the usual duty-free goods, Geneva airport’s shops sell a shedload of Swiss chocolate as well as jewellery, watches, handbags and electricals.

Geneva Airport restaurants

There’s a good range of restaurants at Geneva airport. Last time we checked, you could find food including pastries, Thai, Swiss, Italian cuisine, pub grub, healthy nosh and even Maccy D’s.

Geneva Airport lounges

Premium Geneva provides a VIP service for arrivals and departures, including access to the Skyview lounge which offers food and drink, Wi-Fi and office facilities. You can also upgrade for services such as being escorted through private security and limousine transport to the plane.

The Swissport Horizon VIP lounge proposes a super smooth arrival and departures experience, with agents meeting you from the plane when you arrive or your car / at check in on departure. The lounge has food, drink and office facilities.

Skiing near Geneva

Resort Country Distance (km) Est. time (hr) Chalets Hotels Apartments
Chamonix France 88 1 £506 £172
La Clusaz France 68 1 £729 £389
Flaine France 88 1.2 £369 £196
Les Gets France 84 1.2 £1039 £963 £188
Samoens France 82 1.2 £399 £540 £252
Courmayeur Italy 97 1.3 £557 £589
La Thuile Italy 114 1.3 £649 £419
Morzine France 90 1.3 £689 £638 £449
Avoriaz France 100 1.5 £764 £679 £184
Valmorel France 127 2 £3129 £689 £276
Meribel & Mottaret France 160 2 £399 £804 £194
Les Menuires France 144 2.3 £1119 £643 £187
Alpe d'Huez France 210 2.3 £739 £653 £208
Grindelwald Switzerland 240 2.3 £629 £659
Val Thorens France 170 2.3 £739 £528 £219
Wengen Switzerland 230 2.3 £629
Zermatt Switzerland 240 2.3 £869 £745
Courchevel France 140 2.3 £639 £633 £302
Saas Fee Switzerland 230 2.3 £728 £449
La Plagne France 160 3 £232 £409 £150
Les Deux Alpes France 220 3 £742 £569 £177
Tignes France 180 3 £257 £527 £211
Val d'Isere France 200 3 £445 £524 £207
Cervinia Italy 190 3 £642 £429
Les Arcs France 174 3 £639 £470 £200
La Rosiere France 170 3 £439 £884 £253
Murren Switzerland 250 3 £869
Champoluc Italy 218 3 £637 £759

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