It's really easy to get to La Plagne from all around the world and that's because the ski area is located just 200km from Geneva International airport, the second-largest airport in Switzerland (about two hours and 30 minutes on a good day). Flying isn't your only option, you can always drive here and there are also trains and coaches available.
Feeling spoiled for choice? That's because you are. However, this also means that there's more than one option to consider when deciding how to come here, and that's what we're here for. We've written the complete guide of the best options to travel to La Plagne. Let us help you figure out what's the perfect choice for you.
Best ways to get to La Plagne
La Plagne is located in southeast France, in the department of Savoie, part of the Rhône-Alpes region. It sits at the heart of Paradiski, one of the largest and highest mountain resorts in Europe with 450km of runs across the Vanoise massif, in the Tarentaise Valley.
What’s the best way to get to La Plagne?
We're not just going to give you one route to La Plagne, and below you'll find what we think are their main pros and cons:
- Pros: Fast – you just can't beat flying for pure speed! Geneva airport also offers the greatest selection of airlines, most frequent flight times and lowest prices while airport transfers are the fastest way to reach the ski area – you’ll be at your accommodation’s doorstep in two hours and 30 minutes.
- Cons: Carbon footprint – to be honest, we feel a bit bad about flying these days. You can make up for some of this by not hiring a car and opting for an airport transfer instead. More and more transfer companies are trying to offset their emissions and electric transfer vehicles are becoming a common sight on Alpine roads.
Train to Bourg St Maurice
Eurostar ski trains from London and high-speed TGV trains from Paris stop at Bourg St Maurice, about one hour from La Plagne.
- Pros: Eco-friendly and comfortable – carbon footprint can be reduced by as much as 90% when travelling by train. Trains also have more legroom, so you'll be able to relax while you enjoy the everchanging scenery and even take a stroll along the aisles or visit the onboard café.
- Cons: Speed – travelling by train takes longer than flying for more or less the same amount of money. However, the transfer time from Bourg St Maurice is much shorter so you'll catch up time, plus you won't have to wait at the airport.
The extensive network of European motorways makes it easy to come to La Plagne by car.
- Pros: Convenience – you'll have a car to move around resort and even visit neighbouring ski areas.
- Cons: Time-consuming and air pollution – it can take quite a long time to reach the Alps and you may have to split your journey into more than one day. You'll also need to consider the impact of your car's emissions on the valley's environment, as this area suffers from high levels of air pollution. Plus, you'll have to be ready and equipped to drive on the snow or in inclement weather conditions while parking in resort or at the foot of the slopes may be difficult during peak seasons. For the winter season, from 1st November until 31st March, it is mandatory to have snow chains in the boot of your car or winter tyres fitted.
Coach or long-distance bus
It's possible to get to La Plagne on a coach or long-distance bus, although it's probably our least favourite option.
- Pros: Price – coming to La Plagne by coach is usually the cheapest alternative (although this isn't always the case). Plus, coaches are more environmentally friendly than flying, releasing seven times less CO2 per person. Buses are also quite sociable so you may get the chance to make new friends before you set foot on the slopes.
- Cons: Less comfortable & more time-consuming – it can take up to 20 hours or more to reach La Plagne and buses aren't the most comfortable places to sleep on... you'll be quite exhausted when you reach the pistes!
Flying to La Plagne
Our experience has taught us that flying is the most convenient way to travel to La Plagne – it’s faster, easier and sometimes cheaper than any other means of transport.
Which airports are near La Plagne?
At a glance, these are the main travel hubs for La Plagne. Times and distances are approximate and can be affected by snow, bad weather or peak holiday times:
|Nearest Airports to La Plagne | Times & Distances|
Where do you fly to for La Plagne?
Geneva is the most convenient airport to fly to for La Plagne. It offers frequent flights to and from many European destinations, including cities all around the UK, as well as capitals in America, Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Flight times to Geneva airport from most cities in Europe are under two hours, with London just one hour 40 minutes away and Paris even closer, at one hour 10 minutes.
Below is a list of European flight destinations to and from Geneva airport. Bear in mind that some international flights may only be available during the high season, while their frequency may increase during the winter months, from December to March-April.
|Geneva Airport | Direct Flight Destinations & Airlines|
|UK and Ireland||Aberdeen, Belfast, Birmingham, Bournemouth, Bristol, Dublin, Edinburgh, Exeter, Glasgow, Isle of Man, Jersey, Leeds Bradford, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham & Southampton||Aer Lingus, British Airways, Easyjet, Flybe, Jet2.com, Swiss|
|Northern and Central Europe||Austria (Vienna), Belgium (Brussels), Denmark (Copenhagen), Finland (Helsinki), France (Ajaccio, Bastia, Biarritz, Bordeaux, Calvi, Figari, La Rochelle, Lille, Nantes, Nice, Paris, Rennes & Toulouse), Germany (Berlin, Frankfurt, Hamburg & Munich), Latvia (Riga), Luxembourg, Netherlands (Amsterdam), Norway (Oslo), Sweden (Stockholm & Goteborg), Switzerland (Zurich)||AirBaltic, Air France, Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, Easyjet, Eurowings, Finnair, KLM, Lufthansa, Luxair, Norwegian, SAS, Swiss, Transavia|
|Southern Europe||Greece (Athens, Heraklion & Kalamata), Italy (Brindisi, Cagliari, Catania, Milan, Naples, Olbia, Palermo, Rome & Venice), Portugal (Faro, Lisbon & Porto), Spain (Alicante, Barcelona, Bilbao, Fuerteventura, Gran Canaria, Ibiza, Madrid, Palma de Mallorca, Santiago de Compostela, Tenerife & Valencia)||Aegean, Alitalia, Easyjet, Iberia, Swiss, TAP, Vueling|
|Eastern Europe||Albania (Tirana), Belarus (Minsk), Bulgaria (Sofia), Czech Republic (Prague), Hungary (Budapest), Poland (Krakow & Warsaw), Romania (Bucharest), Russia (Moscow & St Petersburg), Serbia (Belgrade & Pristina), Ukraine (Kyiv)||Aeroflot, Belavia, Easyjet, LOT, Swiss, UIA, WizzAir|
Geneva airport also offers direct flights to and from America (US and Canada), Africa (Algeria, Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mauritius, Morocco and Tunisia), Asia (China) and the Middle East (Israel, Kuwait, Lebanon, Turkey, Qatar and UAE).
Getting from the airport to La Plagne
Geneva airport is just 200km away from La Plagne. There are several ways to make the trip, including airport transfers and regular buses.
How do you get from Geneva airport to La Plagne?
The easiest and fastest way to get to La Plagne is to book an airport transfer. The Geneva to La Plagne transfer time is around two hours 30 minutes but will be longer on snowy days and in peak weeks, such as Christmas, New Year, school holidays and Easter. Learn more on our Transfers Guide page.
How do you get from Grenoble airport to La Plagne?
There are private airport transfers from Grenoble airport to La Plagne running throughout the season. In winter, Ben's Bus also operates regular bus transfers from Grenoble airport to Aime, the town just down the valley from La Plagne, several times per day on Saturdays and once on Sunday morning. The bus transfer time from Grenoble to Aime is around two hours 30 minutes. From Aime, there are local buses to all the La Plagne villages (for more information on how to get from Aime to La Plagne, see our guide on how to get to La Plagne by train).
How do you get from Lyon airport to La Plagne?
Private transfers run from Lyon airport to La Plagne throughout the season. There are also regular buses connecting Lyon airport and Aime every weekend during the winter season, with extended frequencies on Saturdays. The bus transfer time from Lyon to Aime is around three hours. From Aime, hop on a local bus to La Plagne.
In winter, Ben's Bus operates regular bus transfers from Lyon airport to Aime on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays with a journey time of around two hours 30 minutes to three hours.
How do you get from Chambery airport to La Plagne?
Chambery is the nearest airport to La Plagne with a transfer time of one hour 45 minutes. Private transfers run from Chambery airport to La Plagne throughout the season. There are also regular buses connecting Chambery airport and Aime on Saturdays and Sundays during the winter season. The bus transfer time from Chambery to Aime is around two hours. From Aime, local buses will take you to all the La Plagne villages.
Trains to La Plagne
Trains are a great option to get to La Plagne. Even if they may sometimes take longer than flying, they’re more eco-friendly and allow you to carry more luggage without additional charges. It's also really easy to get to La Plagne by train in the winter.
How do you get to La Plagne by train?
Aime is the closest train station to La Plagne, located 28km from the resort centre (around 45 minutes by bus). Regular high-speed trains to and from London (Eurostar ski train) and Paris (TGV) stop here. The total train travel time from London to La Plagne is around nine to eleven hours. We've compiled a very comprehensive guide with everything you need to know to get to La Plagne by train.
Driving to La Plagne
Bringing your own vehicle with you to La Plagne is a good choice if you want to have more flexibility once you’re here, even if you don't really need a car in winter to get around resort thanks to the free shuttle buses.
How do you get from the UK to La Plagne by car?
It's not a short trip from the UK to La Plagne but it can be done in one or two days, depending on where you leave from. Most people driving from the UK to France will need to cross the English Channel from Dover to Calais, the nearest French town. The Calais to La Plagne driving time is around nine hours and 30 minutes for a distance of about 920km. The most direct route is via the French motorways A26, A5, A39, A31, A6 and A43.
You can cross the Channel by the Eurotunnel or a cross-Channel ferry which takes cars from Dover to Calais in around 90 minutes. We recommend you book your tickets in advance. There are also ferries from Portsmouth and Poole to Caen, Cherbourg and St. Malo, in the north of France while from Hull, near Leeds, you can travel by ferry to Zeebrugge in Belgium and then make your way down to La Plagne.
Another thing to take into consideration when bringing your car to La Plagne is that the road on the way up to resort from Aime, down the valley, is around 20km long (a 25-minute drive more or less) and quite winding in places. Even though snow clearers operate every day in winter, driving conditions can be challenging. For the winter season (from 1st November until 31st March), it is now mandatory to have snow chains in the boot of your car or winter tyres fitted, and local police carry out regular spot checks. Read our Driving to La Plagne Guide and find more information on our Parking in La Plagne page once you’ve arrived.
Coaches & long-distance buses to La Plagne
Getting to La Plagne by coach takes considerably longer than flying. However, it’s also usually cheaper, making it a good option when travelling on a low budget. There are a number of international coach companies that travel between the largest cities in Europe and Lyon, Grenoble and Geneva, from where a bus or transfer will take you to La Plagne. These include FlixBus, Eurolines, BlaBlaBus and RegioJet.
Are there any regular coach services from the UK to La Plagne?
Yes! There are regular coach services from London Victoria Coach Station to Aime in the winter, stopping at Folkestone and operated by Snow Express. The London Victoria to La Plagne coach travel time is around 20 hours. These coaches run every week, leaving on Friday evening and returning on Saturday evening, travelling through the night to allow you to spend more time on the slopes.
Bringing your skis, snowboard or bike to La Plagne
Airlines, trains and transfer companies are well versed in catering for customers who travel with their own sports equipment. Each company will have its own individual policy terms and conditions depending on the type of gear you are transporting so it’s well worth checking the details in advance. Here's a snapshot of the different transport options and a guide to their restrictions:
How to bring your sports gear to La Plagne by plane
Most airlines charge a fee for taking skis, snowboards, bikes, golf clubs, parachutes and mountaineering equipment on board, so check before you book. However, a few airlines, such as Swiss, will fly the first set of skis or snowboard for free. Also, make sure you pack your gear well and ensure it falls within the packaging guidelines specified by the carrier.
How to bring your sports equipment to La Plagne by train
On Eurostar ski trains, you can take one pair of skis or one snowboard onboard for free with you, in addition to your standard two-bag luggage allowance. Skis are also allowed for free in TGV trains. Bikes can be transported in special luggage carriages or on board when disassembled and stored in a carrying case in French trains, although fees may apply so check before you book.
Can you bring skis, snowboards or bikes with you in airport transfers?
Shuttle buses are usually well equipped to transport sports equipment but it’s always important to let them know exactly what you’re bringing so that they can ensure they have sufficient capacity. Sports equipment may be subject to a surcharge, please ask when booking.