Skiers travelling by train to Meribel in the 3 Vallées ski region in France will be able to take advantage of a new shared – minibus transfer initiative, launched next week. The service – the first of its kind – means that skiers arriving on the daytime Eurostar Ski Train can be met by a dedicated, shared transfer from Moutiers station that delivers them to the door of their hotel or chalet for a fixed cost of €20, anywhere in the Méribel valley.
The service is aimed at solo travellers and couples, who would otherwise have to spend €65 for a regular private taxi for the 20-minute journey. The transfers are provided by experienced transfer company Three Vallee Transfers in a joint initiative with rail-ski website Snowcarbon and the 3 Vallées Association.
Daniel Elkan, Snowcarbon’s co-founder, says: “Last season, bizarrely, the last public transport Saturday bus would depart for to Méribel 13 minutes before the Eurostar Ski Train arrived carrying hundreds of skiers. This meant that the only choice for skiers was to take a private taxi or walk. So it makes sense to create a shared transfer that meets this popular train.”
The shared transfers are available for skiers travelling on the Eurostar Ski Train from 5th January onwards, which arrives at Moutiers station at 18:13, where they will be greeted by an English-speaking driver holding a name placard, and/or for the return daytime Eurostar Ski Train the following Saturday.
Christophe Gernigon, director of Méribel ski resort in France, says: “Méribel is one of the most convenient ski resorts by train, and these shared transfers will help us encourage more skiers to travel from the UK to Méribel by train and make the journey part of the holiday.”
Vincent Lalanne, director of 3 Vallées Association says: “Les 3 Vallées prides itself on helping skiers get around the extensive ski domain easily and helping them arrive comfortably is just as important. So we are keen to pioneer these improvements in train access, beginning with Méribel and later we hope for the whole 3 Vallées.”
Until now, transfer companies have only offered shared services from airports, making this the first of its kind from train stations. “Every week we see private taxis carrying one or two people up the hill to resorts from Moutiers,” says John Simcock, founder of Three Vallee Transfers. “Skiers have had shared transfers from airports for years, so this will give them the same benefit from train stations. For solos or couples particularly, shared transfers save money, provide a comfortable journey and by the time they reach the door of their chalet they may have made some new friends on the way.”