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What airport for Zermatt?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Question for those that have done it. What airport would you recommend when traveling to Zermatt? It seems like Zurich has more flights - at least what I've seen leaving from Boston. Sounds like Geneva and Milan are a little closer - but at least for the flights to Genava I've seen, there is a connection in Zurich. This is for February, 2006 if that makes a difference. Thanks.
post #2 of 11
We flew into paris then connected to Geneva. It is around a 3 hr train ride from Geneva to Zermatt and I believe we had to switch trains once.

Keep in mind jumping from train to train can be very difficult with skis and luggage. We took all of our gear but if I ever go back I would consider packing my boots and renting skis to avoid the hassle.

There is better skiing to be had in europe but the amazing village/nightlife and spectacular views of the matterhorn make it a magical place. Bring your visa card though...its not cheap. If you get a bluebird day it is worth a trip to the top of the mountain (13K) for a 360deg view of the alps as far as you can see.

I would also suggest skiing Cervinia at least one day...there was not nearly the people there compared to zermatt and the snow is just as good or better.

We stayed at the Matterhornblick hotel...very reasonable, close to the lifts and a continental breakfast.
post #3 of 11
Zermatt is a little close to Geneva, but the difference is not that big, certainly not worth flying to gva from zurich. The train ride is quite long in either direction, so i'd take the flight with the better schedule/
post #4 of 11
I'm going there in January and I would venture to say that Milan-Zermatt by train is slightly further than Genava-Zermatt. But Alitalia usually has some better deals direct from Boston to Milan. I don't know if you are flexible in your schedule but keep in mind that February in Europe is winter vacation and most resorts are very crowded throughout the month. If you have some wiggle room, you might want to consider late January.
post #5 of 11
Forget Zurich or Geneva, Sion is the airport to go for.

It is closest to Zermatt about an hour and a half away. It is also a pleasant little place to be watching the private planes and helicopters come in over the mountains while you wait for your scheduled flight.

When I fly from London Heathrow to Switzerland I use fly/rail. Baggage gets checked in at the airport in London and arrives at your hotel door in Switzerland. All you need to do is hop on the train which is right on the airport. On the way back you check in at the Swiss railway station and collect your baggage in London. It is a unique selling point for most of the Swiss resorts and one of the many classy things that make ski holidays in that country a joy.
post #6 of 11
I've gone Zermatt > GVA via train (got to Zermatt from Chamonix via skiing ) and it was easy enough. You pass through Sion, so if that's an option it's definitly closer. The Swiss rail system is easy to deal with and always on time, so I'd venture to say which ever airport you can get a good flight into would be fine.

I haven't done it, but I too have heard you can check your bags all the way through from the plane to the train to the hotel.
post #7 of 11
I use the trains regularly iun Switzerland. They are ultra reliable and connections are not a problem. If your coming from the Us then you will land at either Geneva or Zurich. You could take a connecting flight to Sion. The one benefit of the train is you take in the spectacular Swiss scenery. You can book everthing online with swiss railways even down to the seat you want to sit in :-) http://www.sbb.ch/en/index.htm
post #8 of 11
Thread Starter 
Great info, thanks! We were thinking about renting skis over there - just to save a little bit of hassle. The option to check the bags through to the hotel sounds like a great feature - and maybe negates the hassle of bringing our skis. It certainly would save some money. I might be able to swing the airfare with frequent flyer miles on United, and it seems like they fly to Zurich from the US. I'll look into the airport at Sion though.

Our dates are not flexible - family vacation and kids in school. I wish it were different. Thanks for the responses so far.

Any recommendations for a guide to take us to some of the good stuff? My understanding is that you don't want to go poking around off piste on your own without good local knowledge.
post #9 of 11
I would check out the Ski Club of Great Britain. You can ski free with them for a day anyway. They will be able to recommend a good guide. You may even be able to share the costs with other like-minded folk.

http://www.skiclub.co.uk/skiclub/default.asp will give you details of who is around when you are there and where to meet up.

If you are interested in Fly/ Rail check with Swiss Air or on the Swiss rail site


post #10 of 11
Sion is a small regional airport (like Aspen or Telluride) . No chance of large inter continental Jets getting in there :-)
post #11 of 11
Geneva and zurich and milan are approx same distance away from zermatt.
we went in thru geneva and left thru milan. if you are not planning to visit milan - which we wanted to do - i would recommend you head back thru zurich or geneva - because the italians - unlike the swiss - do not allow you to check in your baggage all the way. so unless you are travelling very light do not go through milan.
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