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the French Alps ski specialist
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Guardian Travel Awards 2014
  • Eurotunnel to the French Alps

Self Drive Ski Holidays with travel by Eurotunnel or Ferry

Peak Retreats is a ski drive specialist and we think driving to the French Alps is the best option, particularly for families seeking flexibility and value for money.

Here you will find out the benefits of a ski drive holiday and tips for driving to the mountains plus information and prices for the ferry and Eurotunnel services we offer.

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Why Drive to the French Alps?

Here are just some of the reasons to choose a self-drive ski holiday:

  • Flexibility - be in control of your own timetable
  • Take as much luggage as you need (including sport and leisure equipment at no extra charge). This is also ideal for families that tend to come with a lot more stuff!

  • Stop en route as and when you choose. Make the journey a part of the holiday, maybe visit a little vineyard on the way through Burgundy?

  • Make use of the car while in resort - take day trips to areas of interest while maximising your leisure time in resort

  • A self-drive ski holiday offers excellent value for money - here at Peak Retreats we have negotiated great prices with the ferry companies and Eurotunnel so you can rest-assured that you are getting exceptional value

For independent travellers we can offer accommodation-only bookings. Most of our resorts are close to the international airports of Geneva, Grenoble, Chambery, Lyon or Turin (see our airlines and car hire pages).


Tips for a Self-Drive Ski Holiday

Here's some of our top tips for ensuring you get the most out of your France ski holiday.

  • Choose a resort closest to Calais - for the shortest journey possible, pick an area closer to Calais such as the Grand Massif (SamoensMorillon) or Le Grand Bornand.

  • Make sure you make yourself familiar with the laws for driving in France before you travel. There is some compulsory equipment such as warning triangle, GB sticker and headlight adjustments. Full details can be obtained from the AA Touring Tips.

  • Prepare for changeable mountain conditions - it's worth checking the weather forecast in advance but also be aware that the weather can be extremely changeable in the mountains so make sure you pack plenty of warm clothing with you. You will also require snow chains or snow tyres. Please see details at the bottom of this page for buying or hiring snow chains.

  • Save money on your grocery shopping by heading to the hypermarket before getting to your resort. Great rates on fuel can also be had at supermarkets in France.

  • To save time and money, make use of the Liber-t automatic toll payment service. All you have to do is register online in advance to order your tag and then you won't be required to stop at every peage (toll booth) - plus you get access to better rates!

Read our guides: 'Top Tips on Driving to the Alps' and 'How to Entertain Children on Long Journeys'!

Eurotunnel Prices 2018/19
Travel supplements and reductions - please note the below are EACH WAY

All our inclusive ski holidays include a return Standard Eurotunnel crossing for a car with a FREE FlexiPlus upgrade on selected dates, giving you not only the complete flexibility to travel on the next available departure (whenever you turn-up) but also dedicated check-in lane, priority boarding and use of the lounge with complimentary facilities. From Autumn 2017 - the new FlexiPlus lounge will then accept high vehicles.

Car+8 passengers

FlexiPlus upgrade supplement is nil except dates below:

£15 supplement Easter:
OUT 01-09/04/19
IN 09-16/04/19

£99 supplement Half Term:
OUT 11-19/02/19
IN 18-28/02/19

Supplements for extra car on a booking (plus above supplements) - please enquire for cost based on your travel date and Eurotunnel ticket type.

35 mins crossing time - up to 3 departures/hour. IMPORTANT: LPG vehicles not permitted.

Eurotunnel Information

Ski drive has never been so easy! Some supplements for peak dates apply.

FlexiPlus fares cost significantly more when booked direct with Eurotunnel, so we are extremely pleased to have negotiated such a great deal for you.

Eurotunnel crossing time is just 35 minutes from Folkestone to Calais, with up to 4 departures per hour. IMPORTANT: LPG vehicles not permitted

The benefits of Eurotunnel FlexiPlus for your ski holiday


Relax and enjoy your journey without having to worry about arriving on time for your departure. Leave from home or from the ski resort when you are ready and avoid the stress of having to meet a particular departure. During peak travel times, you are kindly requested to respect your reserved departure time as close as possible. The Eurotunnel service is very popular during these peak travel times.

Priority Check-in

Enjoy use of exclusive Check-in booths/lane where you will be offered the next available departure (3 per hour during most of the day).

Priority Boarding

Once you are in your designated FlexiPlus lane, you will be boarded on the next shuttle ahead of other passengers. Remember, first on, first off and onwards to your destination.

Designated parking place

If stopping off for a bite to eat or last minute shopping then you are entitled to park in the designated spaces close to the Passenger Terminal Buildings.

The FlexiPlus lounge

The lounge opens 06.00 to 22.00 daily (local time), offering you complimentary non-alcoholic drinks and light meal.

Relax in comfortable surroundings with a free newspaper (one per car) or take advantage of telephone/fax/internet access facilities. There is a small shop for any last minute purchases. On your return enjoy the French FlexiPlus lounge; shop for alcohol and confectionery at French prices. From Autumn 2017 - the new FlexiPlus lounge will accept high vehicles (previously only vehicles under 1.85m were permitted).

Outside opening hours the Passenger Terminal building, situated before border controls in the UK and after border controls in France, will be happy to welcome you. However complimentary refreshments and newspapers will not be available.

Free downloads

Each Flexiplus customer will now be able to download 2 newspapers/magazines from the digital library when they visit the Flexiplus lounge.


Drive up to the train


Within the train carriages


Entering the train carriages

Ferry Travel Information

Peak Retreats can also book P&O ferries from Hull-Zeebrugge/Rotterdam if you live in the North of the country or ferries from the south coast across to France. Choose from Dover-Calais with P&O and Portsmouth-Caen, Poole/Portsmouth-Cherbourg, Portsmouth-St-Malo, Plymouth-Roscoff with Brittany Ferries.

Why P&O Hull-Zeebrugge/Rotterdam? Save miles in the UK and arrive first thing in the morning fresh and ready for your journey in either Zeebrugge or Rotterdam. Zeebrugge to the Alps is roughly the same distance as Calais whilst Rotterdam adds about 70 miles. The P&O ferry terminal is in Europoort which lies approximately 24 miles from the centre of Rotterdam.

Crossing times Hull routes - 10-13 hours with 1 overnight crossing per day
Dover route - 90 mins with crossings every 45 mins at peak times

For more information about P&O Ferries, (including cabins, sailings, schedules), view here
For more information about Brittany Ferries, (including cabins, sailings, schedules etc), view here

P&O Prices 2018/19
Travel supplements and reductions - please note the below are EACH WAY

Dover-Calais - Car+9 passengers: deduct £75 each way. For peak dates* only, deduct £50 (not in addition)
Hull-Zeebrugge/Rotterdam - Car+2 passengers: deduct £73 each wayFor peak dates* only, deduct £38 (not in addition)

Extra passenger - £8pp each way
Pets - £15-17 each way
Club lounge - £12pp each way
Priorité - £12 per car each way
Length - £28 per m above 6m each way (17/18 prices)
Height - £28 per m above 2.4m each way (17/18 prices)
Breakfast & dinner - £26/adult each way and £13/child each way (17/18 prices)

* Peak Dates for DOVER - CALAIS 21, 22, 23 December 2018; 05, 06, 07, 19, 20, 21 April 2019; CALAIS - DOVER 21, 22 April 2019
 Peak Dates for for HULL - ROTTERDAM / ZEEBRUGGE 21 December 2018; 12, 13, 18 April 2019; ROTTERDAM / ZEEBRUGGE - HULL 21 December 2018; 26, 27 April 2019

Brittany Ferries Prices 2017/18
Travel supplements and reductions - please note the below are EACH WAY

Car+5 passengers

Portsmouth-Caen: deduct £25 each way. Then for weekend* only, add £22 each way
Poole-Cherbourg (Economie): deduct £30 each way. Then for weekend* only, add £22 each way
Portsmouth-Le Havre (Economie): deduct £30 each way. Then for weekend* only, add £22 each way
Portsmouth-St Malodeduct £30 each way. Then for weekend* only, add £22 each way
Plymouth-Roscoffdeduct £30 each way. Then for weekend* only, add £22 each way

Extra passengers on all routes are £24 each way (per passenger).
Cars above 1.83 are £28 each way (per vehicle)
Extra car on booking: £220 (per vehicle)

*(W/E overnight Fri out and Sat in)

On board accommodation has to be booked on overnight crossings with Brittany Ferries. Please enquire for cabin and Club Class seat prices.


Please note that the supplements shown are calculated on the basis of our tour operator allocated space. Occasionally, space may not be available at these fares, in which case we may have to charge the operator's full brochure price. If this occurs, it will, of course, be made clear to you at the time of booking. The same operator must be used for the outward and return journey.

Miss the queues at the toll plazas and arrive at the ski resort first... Book SANEF!

Sanef, the French motorway operator has now extended its Liber-t automatic toll payment service to UK motorists. To use the service all you need to do is register online and they will send you a small electronic transponder (or tag) that you attach to your windscreen just behind the rear-view mirror. As you approach the barriers, a device by the barrier will read your transponder (or tag), securely extract your unique reference and then automatically open the barrier without you having to stop.

Want to skips the queues? Sign up to Sanef.

Ski Drive: Snowchains (to buy or hire)

The weather in the mountains can be unpredictable and snowchains are a must when driving on mountain roads.

Polar Snowchains – 01732 360638
Please contact us here at Peak Retreats once you have booked your holiday and you will be given a special discount to use with Polar snowchains.

Find out how to put on snow chains



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