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Geneva City Centre and Jet d'Eau? - Wikimedia

Located in the west of the country, providing great access into the nearby Swiss and French Alps, as well some of the mountain resorts in the north-western tip of Italy, Geneva International Airport is the 2nd largest in Switzerland, with Zurich being the country's busiest airport.

Officially named Geneve Aeroport, it is situation 2.5 miles north of the city centre, right on the border of France.

Geneva airport has a few negative points, such as an eating area that could do with being bigger, and some long travel times to some of the gates, but all in all Geneva is a terrific airport with a nice, modern feel and the airport's fully-integrated train station is a dream for those of us who love rail travel and want to start our travels seamlessly without getting a bus or taxi to the train station.

The Arrivals Area of Geneva Airport

The arrivals area of Geneva Airport is located on the bottom floor of the building. You come out into quite a nice modern area, with the exits to the outside area (e.g. for taxi's, buses and pick-ups) immediately in front of you, or a walk down to the left to get to the airport's integrated train station.

The Departures Area of Geneva Airport

Geneva Airport's departure hall is located one floor above the arrivals area. It's got a decent, modern feel to it and is efficient enough at getting down the queues that inevitably build up in the winter when the skier's are heading home from the Swiss and French Alpine resorts.

Having checked-in, you then go up the escalators to pass through the security checks. Be prepared for some big queues at this point in the high season.

Once through security you're faced with some plush shops and boutiques, and this area is one of the few in the airport that feels a bit cramped and hemmed in. Once you're through this it all opens up again nicely and has an open feel to it.

One of the downsides of Geneva airport is the food-eating situation when you've gone through security. It's a lovely shiny airport but when it's extremely busy in the middle of the winter ski season it does seem a strangely small eating area with a ridiculously small number of seats. Be aware that even though this sector of the airport is signed as the only area with restaurants and food, there are various other individual food outlets serving sandwiches, paninis, pizza slices etc in some of the other locations on the way to the different gate areas.

Another criticism has to be the long walks to some of the gates. So don't be surprised when you see a sign suggesting that it's a 15 minute walk to gate area D, because it is, even with the use of the travelators.

Public Transport Links at Geneva Airport

Geneva Airport's links into Switzerland's fantastic public transport network is one of the airport's big advantages. As well as easy access into the bus network and plenty of taxi's to get you into the city centre (which is only a couple of miles away), Geneva Airport also has it's own railway station, meaning that visitors can make use immediately of Switzerland's incredibly efficient and comprehensive rail network to get you to almost any location in the country.

Getting to the airports train station couldn't be easier - as you walk through the Arrivals gate, turn left and head down to the far end (passed one of our favourite airport shops - the massive airport florists), then through the revolving doors and you're into the Geneva Aeroport Train Station, literally just a few minutes walk.

It's one of the great features of Geneva airport as the trains head into Geneva's city station and then off to various locations around the country without you having to change at Geneva main station. It's great when you've got several pieces of luggage but know that you can definitely get them on and into a decent space and get a decent seat in an almost empty train. The same system is used when you come back on a main train to Geneva, if it heads into Geneva's train station then you can be pretty sure it will continue and terminate at the airport. It's a great system and makes travel to Geneva and beyond into the further reaches of Switzerland almost seamless.

When you arrive back at Geneva Airport's train station, to get into the arrivals hall you do have to go up the escalators and outside for a few steps. Admittedly, it doesn't last long before your back inside again but it's a shame they couldn't have designed it so that this small area is also completely covered, rather than the narrow little covering that provides hardly any protection when it's lashing it down with rain or sleet !

Useful Websites and Links for Geneva Airport

You might find the following links and sites useful if you are thinking of using Geneva Airport.