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Transfers vs Car Hire

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Hi everyone

We (2 families consisting of a total 4 adults and 3 children) are flying out to Geneva in Jan 18 and are staying in Sainte Foy/Espace Killy region for a week. We fly/return on a sunday.
We can't decide as a group on what is the best way to get to the resort is so I thought I'd ask for some opinions on here.

We did a similar trip last year and we hired a car, but it was on a Saturday and the transfer was awful (big long queues, especially though the toll booths) which turned a sat nav estimate of 2.20 hrs to a 5 hr marathon drive each way- not much fun with kids. However the weather was actually fine and we had no problems with the actual roads. We vowed to never do this again as the drive back to the airport was cut very fine (we just managed to check in as the desk was being closed) and if the weather had been bad then i'm sure it would have been even worse

However we have started looking at transfers and the prices are appearing to be much higher than car hire, so I am asking if we were just unlucky and should we chance it again seeing as we are on a sunday this time???

Big thanks for any help
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
the transfer vehicles can sometimes find some local shortcuts - but they take ages on busy transfer days too!
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
SNCF to Bourg then local bus
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 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
@dry7gam, You can get a Sanef toll thingy to stick on the windscreen of your hire care and cruise through the T only lanes at the Peages. Costs £20 or so to get (refundable on return I think), £5 each month you use it and toll charges on top. Not too much when compared to the overall cost of a ski holiday. Just remember to take it with you when you drop off the hire car.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Five hour drive from GVA to the Tarentiase on a mid-January Saturday sounds much worse than usual. Was it snowing heavily? Sunday is normally a lot quieter than Saturday.
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
Sundays on the roads shouldn’t be as busy, as Saturday is the main transfer day by far and people going for a weekend will be already on the slopes.

Are you self catering ? The hire car lets you stop at the supermarket down in Bourg and stock up cheaper than in resort. Many transfer companies won’t add this option.

If you are based in St Foy having the car means you are more flexible if you want a day in Val d’Isere or Tignes.

Agree with Pam that the transfer drivers will tell you they know shortcuts, but so does every other transfer driver and person with sat nav diverting them away from problems. Once had a transfer driver that took us all over the place trying to avoid traffic with a total journey time of 7hrs from GVA-Tignes.

Your are doing the right thing by travelling on a Sunday.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
I agree with previous posters that a Sunday in mid January shouldn't be very busy. An advantage of having a hire car is that it makes it easier to leave earlier if it looks like bad weather's coming in
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
We are a family of 5 and always hire a car for the transfers. It so much cheaper. We have not had any problems other than traffic in the last 5 years. I always figure that any problems we have will also be had by the coaches.
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
We were there last season and had 2 lots of 2 arriving from GVA by transfer bus, as you say it's fairly costly.

As the others have indicated, sat transfer makes it probably the busiest day of the week so avoiding that should make it far more realistic. No guarantees though.
Saturday, you've got to be up to Bourg st Maurice by about 9.00am to miss the queue in ski season. Otherwise better to leaves it and aim for 16.00hr as it does clear out.
If you were on the autoroute near Chambery also, that Saturday shopping traffic round there can generally be very slow.

I think you've a better than fair chance on a Sunday of being fairly well able to get a decent journey.

If you get a massive stash of snow though, all bets area off.

Great ski area too, hope you get a better trip this time round.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
These guys will get you quotes automatically — and some of them will be very good value indeed. I have used them a number of times and highly recommend them:

https://www.findtransfers.com
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
@Poogle, thanks, they came up with an option €150 cheaper than the best I could find by googling. Very helpful.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
I do approx 10 trips to VdI each year and always hire a car.

The only time I would consider transfers would be if going for more than 10 days.

Google maps is the absolute best for diverting around traffic but you have very few options on this route. The only rider to that is that most transfer buses go around Lac Annecy and this can be quite a bit slower than the A41/A43.

If hiring a car, definitely get a toll booth fob and use the automatic lanes. In january, it shouldn't be too bad, even on a Saturday.


Last edited by And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports. on Fri 17-11-17 17:43; edited 1 time in total
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
I'm always open to both options. In your place I'd be tempted by getting a private transfer for the seven of you. By the time you have rented two cars and paid for insurance, tolls, fuel, parking, snow chains, (ski racks) etc. on top then I doubt the difference in price would be significant. In addition, if you haven't done the trip many times before you might find it less worrying to let a transfer driver take the strain. They are pretty good at knowing when you need to leave, which route, putting on chains etc. etc. I seem to remember that a private transfer to Avoriaz (closer than 3V) is about 200 euros for eight people. Same again for the return trip makes 400. I think you would need a base price of <150 euros per week, per car to equal that.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
what do you do if you have 2 ski bags, 3 or 4 suitcases and 5 people to transfer, when I've looked into it shared transfer always seems cheaper than car as I'd need a big car to fit everything in.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Transfers to EK are in the region of €60-€70 per person each way. 7 people will be €1000 unless you can haggle a decent discount.
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