Stories28th October 2020
When going on holiday most of us are quick to jump on a plane figuring it’s going to be the quickest way to our destination, but actually once you break it down, is it?
Depending on where you live in the UK the first port of call is usually Calais to cross over to France on either the Eurotunnel or the ferry. This can range anywhere between £40-£100+ depending on when you’re travelling and how far in advance you book your ticket. The Eurotunnel takes just 35 minutes from Folkstone to Calais!
Depending on your vehicle you’ll probably spend around £80-£100 in petrol. You need to factor in a little more if you’d like to stop more along the way and visit other off-route places. You will also pass through several tolls that total around 80 euros but if you have 3-4 of you in a car it can often work out cheaper than flying
You have the option to choose when you leave and choose your own pace. Fancy taking a side stop in a French city you’ve always wanted to visit? Stay in a nice chateaux? Or even just to use that boot space to stock up on some delicious French cheese and wine to take home on the return leg.. Why not take a visit to the vineyards of the Côte-d’Or and sample some of the best Pinot Noir and Chardonnay wines in the world? Beaune is a good place to stay overnight for this. Or if you’re feeling brave you could even take a visit to the capital en route.
Depending on the size of vehicle & number of passengers, you can pack the car full to the brim of your own own ski equipment & luggage and avoid what would have been extra airline baggage fees. Just make sure you leave enough room for the passengers..
If taking your own car make sure you’ve got your driving licence, log book, snow chains and appropriate insurance to cover your stay abroad. You will also need to have a UK sticker on your car and carry reflective jackets for all passengers, a warning triangle and two NF-approved breathalysers.
With recent world events in mind driving now appeals to a wider audience. It’s the only way you can travel directly from your home to your accommodation in the Alps without being in direct contact with a single person. You also have the option of your own transport when you arrive in your destination and if you desire can avoid public transport all together. This can be particularly handy for stocking up on food supplies in supermarkets down the mountain where they are cheaper than in the mountain resorts.
We asked some of our loyal Alpoholics guests, Anina & Rob, to share their thoughts and experiences on driving out to La Plagne for the first time last Winter (dog included!)
What first made you decide to drive rather than fly to La Plagne?
We wanted to take the dog with us so thought we’d try the drive. This also allowed us to decide when to travel to avoid traffic en route where possible – especially the road up to the Alps. Plus we could bring all our ski gear for no added cost.
Tell us about your journey, did you power through or stop off en-route?
The journey was much better than I imagined. It was easy and relaxing. We had the dog so we decided to stop off en route. We found a couple of stunning dog friendly chateaux’s to stay overnight in. We were able to see much more of the history and sights, and sample more Champagne than we ever could flying. The Eurostar was very easy, the motorways quiet and we arrived relaxed and already having started our holiday. Had the traffic been bad (as it is on some weekends) we would have been able to avoid this by driving at a different time.
Would you recommend it to people?
Absolutely. I would do it every time from now on. When you take into account the check in time and the hanging around at the airport, overall it doesn’t take more time and can be cheaper and more convenient. Probably best if you’ve got someone to share the driving with, to avoid getting over tired. Plus being able to bring back cheese and wine and see some of the rest of France was brilliant.
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