About Getting to Verbier
If you're not taking a package holiday, where travel to your resort is already catered for, then you might want to consider how you're going to get to Switzerland and Verbier.
What are the options to consider if you’re coming to Verbier in either winter or summer? Should you fly or self-drive? How do you get from the airport to resort? What about bringing skis or bikes with you? What’s the quickest way to get here? Or the cheapest?
Best way to get here
If you are travelling from outside of Switzerland, then flying into Geneva Airport and hiring a car is the quickest way to get to Verbier. Geneva has a great choice of airlines offering good value on flights all year round. The Swiss rail network is also worth looking into as you can catch a train all the way to Le Chable, which is located just below Verbier (read more about trains below).
You have a good choice of international airports to fly into when coming to Verbier, either in winter or summer. Geneva and Zurich are the most commonly used.
|Geneva Airport||Zurich Airport|
|Time||1 h 50 mins||3 hours|
|Distance & Maps||161 km||282 km|
These times are only approximate and can be affected by snow, adverse weather or lots of traffic during peak holiday times.
Geneva Airport is extremely well connected from most UK and European cities and is the closest airport to Verbier. Flights to Geneva are competitively priced because of high passenger volumes and you can pick up Swiss chocolate and Swiss watches on your way through!
Other Swiss airports such as Zurich and Bern are well connected to Verbier by road and the Swiss rail network. Bern is closer (around 2.15 hours transfer) and services a lot of European destinations, but if you're coming from further afield you're more likely to fly into Zurich which welcomes flights from all over the world, year round. You could also fly into one of the Italian or French airports such as Milan, Turin or Lyon although they involve not only crossing international borders, but also mountain roads (from Italy) and road tolls if you're self driving.
We'd recommend Geneva as the best option, as it has the most onward transfer options and the shortest transfer time to Verbier. On the subject of transfers, you can take a private taxi, hire a car, take the train or pick up a private airport transfer. Travel times vary for each airport, as do the respective transfer costs. Read more in our Transfers Guide.
There are an increased number of international flights to the above airports during the winter months, operating from December to March/April. In summer there are plenty of flights to Geneva and Zurich from all over the world. Use our Flight Finder via the link below to search for the best flights for your trip.
If you’re bringing sports equipment with you, don’t forget to check how much extra the airline might charge you for carriage and give yourself extra time to get this additional equipment checked in. Often the excess baggage areas are separate from the main check in desks, so make sure you get there with plenty of time to potentially do two check-ins. You should be able to find out more information about prices and check in desks either on the airline website, on your tickets or email confirmation.
Transfers to Resort
Once you've reached the airport the easiest onwards form of travel to resort is by using a private transfer company. Some shared transfers are available, as are hire cars, but if you're looking to arrive in a timely, hassle free way, going private is the way to do it. If you're arriving by train in Le Chable, it's only a short ride up in the gondola to get to the centre of Verbier. This gondola ride is included in the price of your ski pass, so it's worth buying your ski pass online in advance so you don't pay extra for this leg of the journey.
Also see: Transfer Options for Verbier
There are no public buses that run directly from Geneva Airport to Verbier. There are however minibus services to Verbier which are run by private companies and take around 3 hours. They cost in the region of 120CHF return per person (based on 4 people sharing a private transfer).
Information on local buses once you've arrived in Verbier can be found via the link below.
Also see: Bus Services in Verbier
It's surprisingly easy, quick and comfortable to travel overland by train from and to just about anywhere in Europe, especially between some of the major European cities.
If you're travelling from the UK, it's possible to catch the Eurostar to Paris and then take one of the TGV Lyria trains on to Verbier. Your journey would look like this; London St Pancras to Paris Nord on Eurostar > Paris Lyon to Lausanne on TGV > Lausanne to Martigny on a regional train > Martigny to Le Chable, also on a regional train. High speed trains mean that the total journey time is pretty short - it takes around 2 hours 15 to get to Paris and then a further 5-6 hours to get to Le Chable. You will need to verify check in times and transfers from station to station on each leg of the journey, allowing yourself enough time to make each of the connections.
If you're travelling from elsewhere in Switzerland, the Swiss rail network is renowned as being one of the best, most punctual services in Europe as well as having a vast network. There are also plenty of sightseeing trains aimed at toutists which you can take to explore the lakes and mountains.
The benefit of coming to Verbier (Le Chable) by train is that, as well as being more environmentally friendly, you arrive at the foot of the mountain and so there's no need to take an additional transfer or bus up to resort, you can simply take the gondola from Le Chable up to the resort centre.
Also see: National Trains to Verbier
There are a number of international coach companies that arrive in Geneva or Lausanne but no closer than that to Verbier. You'll need to hop on a train from either of these two locations to finish your journey.
These long haul coaches are usually more comfortable than your average coach and many travel through the night, allowing you to spend more time on your actual holiday when you arrive. Although the journey time is longer, you don't have the usual airport hassle of checking in luggage and hanging around in the departures lounge waiting for your flight to board. It is also more eco-friendly and often quite a bit less expensive.
If you’re travelling from the UK, or perhaps from other European destinations to Switzerland by car, one of only a few options is to take the cross-channel ferry; another is the Eurotunnel train. You should book ferry tickets well in advance, especially if you’re thinking about travelling during peak holiday season.
Bringing your own vehicle with you to Verbier is a good idea if you want to have a little more flexibility getting around once you’re here, or if you want to explore neighbouring towns, villages or other resorts. Montreux, Lausanne, Geneva and Chamonix are all within easy driving distance of Verbier and make for a good day trip.
In winter the 9km (or so) long, winding road up into Verbier from Le Chable is cleared of snow regularly, but if you don't actually need your car when in resort, it's a good idea to leave it in the parking at Le Chable and take the gondola or the bus up to resort centre.
Also see: Driving to Verbier
Travelling with equipment
Airlines, trains and transfer companies are all well-versed in catering for customers who travel with their own sports equipment (eg skis/snowboards or bikes/golf clubs in the summer), but it’s well worth checking the details in advance. Each company will have their own individual policy terms and conditions depending on the type of sporting equipment you are transporting. Here's a snapshot of the different transport options and a guide to their restrictions:
By Plane: Some airlines charge for taking skis/snowboards, and some don’t, and this can also apply to bikes, golf clubs, parachutes, mountaineering equipment - so check before you book. Make sure you pack your gear well, as it’s not unusual for there to be a few bumps and bruises along the way, if you don’t! The same applies for your bike, whether that be a mountain bike, road bike or touring bike...pack it well and ensure it falls within the packaging guidelines specified by the carrier. For more information see our Cycling & Mountain Biking Guides.
Airport Transfer companies - again, these guys know that you’re going skiing, so they are able to cater for skis and snowboards coming too. However, it’s always important to let them know exactly what you’re bringing, so that they can ensure having sufficient capacity for skis/snowboards/bikes/clubs etc. An 8-seater minibus is much more cramped if all 8 of you turn up with skis without having forewarned the driver!
By Train - depending on where you start from, remember that train travel might include a couple of changes and almost certainly lugging your gear up and down a few sets of stairs or escalators. Eurostar allows skis/snowboards as 1 of your 2 permitted pieces of larger luggage, however golf clubs, bikes and other sporting equipment incur an additional charge of around £30 for their registered luggage service.