Our Guide to driving to Meribel this Winter
Dec 14, 2020
Driving to the alps has always been a popular way to travel, with lots of our guests choosing to drive to Meribel year after year. For those of you that haven't considered driving, this winter season could be the perfect time to choose this option.
All of our chalets benefit from parking outside your chalet plus there is a large free car park in Les Allues, now is certainly the time to consider it! Read on to discover our best tips for a smooth ride.
Here are the pros to driving out to Meribel:
EXcellent Value for money
As long as there's at least two of you in the car then driving to resort can actually work out cheaper than flying to France. Despite the cost of tolls and fuel, when you choose to fly to France you often have to drive to your chosen airport and pay for parking there, fly and then pay to take a transfer to and from your resort.
When you drive you can calculate your costs completely door to door, and there are no pesky ski or snowboard charges to add to your flight either. If you are thinking of driving to Meribel you can calculate your costs using the Via Michelin website which will give you petrol costs and toll costs along the routes.
In the current Covid-19 environment it can be hard to imagine travelling through a bustling airport with crowds of people. If you want to ski this but take the stress out of travelling, keeping to your car with your own group could be the way forward.
If you look at options to cross the channel such as the Eurotunnel you don't even have to get out of your car for your journey.
Although, not as ecological as taking the train to the alps, if you fill your car up (or even better have an electric car), you can significantly reduce your carbon footprint and do your part in keeping the snow for longer.
Wake up at 3am, jump in the car, park your car, carry your bags to the airport, get in the queue, drop off your baggage, wait around in the airport for two/three hours, buy overpriced airport food, get on the plane, fly for two hours, get to the other side, queue to get off the plane, head through security, wait for your bags, get out the other side, before your 2 hour transfer to resort, and finally... relax! Does this scenario sound familiar!?
Driving to the alps takes around the same amount of time to fly but it can insurmountably remove the stress. Granting you the freedom to take your journey at your own pace, bring your own food and plan your own stops, you also don't need to worry about baggage allowance!
Travelling as a family also particularly lends itself to driving to resort, you can bring any extra toys that the kids just can't live without, and they're more likely to be comfortable in a known and familiar environment.
What should you consider when driving to Meribel?
Whilst the resort of Meribel is great at snow clearing the roads, sometimes the snow can be incredibly heavy and cover the roads before the snow clearers have returned to do a second sweep. It's important not to underestimate the challenges of driving in snow, especially when you're in a foreign country and not used to it.
On Saturdays when it is snowing, the police/gendarmerie will often stand at the bottom of the valley where chains are required and will prevent any vehicle without chains from going any further.
Whilst you may not end up needing them, it's very important to travel with snow chains, not only because it's a legal requirement in ski resorts but also for your own piece of mind.
Parking in Les Allues is a breeze when you stay with Ski Blanc. All of our chalets have space for 2 or more cars and there is also a free large public car park in the centre of Les Allues. Check out our chalets here.
It may sound obvious to some, but remember that here in France we drive on the right side of the road! Luckily most of the route takes place on French motorways and it's very easy to adapt, especially in an English car.
There are quite a few toll booths enroute from Calais to Meribel so remember you'll be stopping to pay by cash or by card. These tolls depend on how long you have been on that particular stretch of motorway and the type of vehicle you are driving.
Sanef, the French motorway operator can also send you an automatic toll pass, the 'Liber-t’ toll tag which will connect automatically to your credit card and means you can head through the barriers without stopping at each ticket machine, speeds up the process.
Legally, your insurer has to offer third party cover whist driving in Europe. However, for peace of mind it is definitely worth doublechecking that you are fully covered for your drive here.