A cheaper option if looking to ski in the Three Vallees is to stay in the resort of Orelle, located in the Maurienne Valley. Orelle is a very small resort divided into 10 hamlets, from one of these hamlets, Francoz, you can take the 3 Vallees Express gondola to Val Thorens which takes 30 minutes!
As Orelle is a very small resort the amenities are limited but there are big advantages of staying in this resort if you plan to ski in the 3 Valleys ski area. It is very cheap compared to the Trois Vallees for groceries and meals out and accommodation in Orelle also costs far less than Three Valleys ski accommodation. Another benefit with Orelle being smaller and quieter is that there are less crowds than in 3 Vallees resorts so you spend less time queuing for the lifts and can start skiing sooner!
One point to note is that due to the necessary use of a red slope to get from Orelle to Val Thorens, Orelle is not recommended for beginners.
Where to stay?
Le Hameau des Eaux d’Orelle is located half a mile from the gondola taking you to Val Thorens. There is a free resort shuttle bus which runs to the gondola from the residence every 15 minutes. Hameau des Eaux Orelle benefits from an indoor heated swimming pool with sauna, Jacuzzi and steam room.