Planning a skiing holiday this season? Here’s where to find budget flights to ski resorts in France.
This article lists the airlines and aiports that offer travel to France’s best ski resorts, plus some good-value ski packages, often in less obvious resorts. We’ve included the latest baggage charges for a fuller picture of the costs of your trip. We don’t yet know how frost-bitten the ski industry will be as a result of the economic chill, but reintroducing free ski and snowboard carriage on flights would make ski holidays more attractive, and boost sales of ski equipment in the UK. The budget airlines currently add-on steep charges for sports equipment including skis and snowboards. With Ryanair, for example, one 20kg suitcase and a pair of skis can add up to £130 each way. All accommodation prices are for one week unless stated otherwise.
Flights Heathrow, Gatwick and City Airport to Geneva; Heathrow to Lyon, Nice, Toulouse. City to Chambéry. Flights from £78 return. In economy, one checked piece of luggage is carried free and the second is £30 each way.
Holiday idea Isola 2000 is good for beginners, intermediates and families with 120km of skiing on 42 pistes. Nice airport is just 90km away. Stay at the three-star Residence Les Terrasses d’Azur from £430 for an Apartment Studio for 4 people through Pierre et Vacances.
Flights Birmingham to Geneva (Saturday and Sunday); East Midlands to Chambéry (Saturday and Sunday), Toulouse (Sunday) and Geneva (up to four times a week) £44 return. One piece of baggage plus one pair of skis or snowboard carried free of charge.
Holiday idea Baqueira Beret is a purpose-built resort in the Spanish Pyrenees, two-and-a-quarter hours from Toulouse airport, with 115km of surprisingly good pistes. Ski Miquel (01457 821200, miquelhols.co.uk) offers half board at Chalet Hotel Salana, including five days’ ski guiding, from £513pp.
Flights Geneva (daily) from Belfast, Birmingham, Bournemouth, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, Gatwick, Luton, Stansted, Manchester, and Newcastle. Returns from £48, plus £10 each way for each piece of checked baggage, and £25 for ski equipment.
Holiday idea Chamonix is an hour from Geneva airport and has some of the world’s most challenging skiing and snowboarding including some of the best off-piste skiing in the Alps. Pierre & Vacances (0870 0267 145, pv-holidays.com) has a studio sleeping four in Résidence La Rivière in Chamonix Sud, 300m from the Aiguille du Midi cable car and five minutes from the resort centre, from €229.
Flights Geneva from Exeter, Isle of Man, Jersey, Southampton; Berne from Southampton; Chambéry from Birmingham, Exeter and Southampton. Flights from £86 return, plus £30 each way per piece of luggage or ski equipment.
Holiday idea St François Longchamp, a village in the Maurienne valley less than 80km from Chambéry, shares a 95km ski area with Valmorel. Erna Low (0845 863 0525, ernalow.co.uk) has a self-catering chalet sleeping four (in the purpose-built Le Village Gaulois) from £463.
Flights Grenoble, Lourdes Pyrenees from Stansted. Returns from £64 (based on Stansted to Grenoble), plus charges from £25 each way for each piece of checked luggage, and from £40 to bring your own skis or snowboard.
Holiday idea The village of Chamrousse is only an hour away from Grenoble airport. It’s great for beginner and intermediate skiers and has high altitude glacier skiing for guaranteed snow. Crystal Ski (0871 231 2256, crystalski.co.uk) has deals from £323pp including flights from Stanstead.
*UPDATE*lagrange-holidays.co.uk has 50% off a week’s holiday in Les 2 Alps departing 11th February.
Flights City and Heathrow to Geneva. Checked baggage and ski equipment carried free. Returns from £74.
Holiday idea Flaine, about an hour-and-a-half from Geneva, is in a snow-sure bowl in France’s large Grand Massif ski area, with 265km of pistes. It has 64 runs in total, and good nursery slopes in and outside the village make it an ideal spot for families. Pierre et Vacances has a one-bedroom apartment sleeping up to five in convenient Résidence La Forêt on the upper level of the resort from €640.
Flights Gatwick and Stansted to Chambéry; from £98 return (Chambéry), plus £10 each way for checked luggage, £4 for boot bags, £18 for skis or snowboards.
Holiday idea Les Arcs offers access to one of the largest ski areas in the world. It’s made up of Les Arcs 1600, Les Arcs 1800, Les Arcs 1950 and Les Arcs 2000, plus cable car access to La Plagne. Direct Ski (020-7371 6111, directski.com) has an apartment for two in two-star Résidence Charmettoger 1800 from £238.