Can I go skiing in France now? (July 2020 Update)

Chamonix Mont Blanc (32)

Photo: Aiguille du Midi cable car Chamonix – © Paul Skinner / Top Snow Travel

Even though it’s summer in Europe right now, it is currently possible to ski in France.

Lifts opened again in May

Although the winter season finished early in mid-March due to the Coronavirus pandemic, the first lifts in France started turning again as soon as May.

Chamonix led the way when they opened the Aiguille du Midi cable car and Montenvers train two months ago on 16 May. Their lifts were opened with masks compulsory and social distancing restrictions in place.

Chamonix Mont Blanc (14)
Aiguille du Midi – © Paul Skinner / Top Snow Travel

Summer Glacier Skiing opened in June

France has been very successful in controlling Covid-19 and the easing of lockdown allowed both Val d’Isère and Les 2 Alpes to open for summer skiing on 06 June. Tignes became the third French ski resort to open for summer skiing on 20 June.

Masks are compulsory on lifts, but there are no restrictions on numbers for drag lifts, chairlifts or gondolas. Hand sanitiser is provided at the top and bottom of the main lifts.

Glac Vdi
Summer skiing in Val d’Isère

High Altitude Glacier Skiing

One of the reasons that these resorts in France have been able to open is because they offer high altitude glacier skiing above 3000m.

It’s this ability to offer guaranteed snow in summer, as well as in winter that is one of the main reasons so many skiers and snowboarders choose France for their ski holiday.

Will French ski resorts be open next winter?

It’s not possible to know the future (if only!), but France continues to see a fall in new cases and fatalities. We therefore expect ski resorts to open as usual for skiing this 2020/21 winter, although it seems probable that masks will remain compulsory on lifts.

Although they do not offer summer skiing, earlier this month Les 3 Vallées opened lifts to hikers and mountain bikers and confirmed that there would be no restrictions on numbers for the coming winter.

summer lifts in L3v
Summer in Les 3 Vallées (c) Les 3 Vallées

Are restaurants open?

Restaurants in France are open with seating indoors and outdoors with social distancing in place. Masks are being worn by staff, but are not compulsory for diners.

L3v Resto
Dining in Les 3 Vallées (c) Les 3 Vallées

Should I book my France ski holiday now or wait?

Things have moved on significantly since our last update in May, when no ski resorts in France were open. It looks very positive for next winter and there are some excellent offers for those prepared to commit now.

We recommend booking your trip for January or March, which are both low-season periods in France. January usually means a good snow base in place, with a greater chance of powder days. March is warmer, with longer days and can be great for spring sunshine.

Special Offers and Reduced Deposits

You can secure your ski holiday with a specially reduced deposit of only 25% (down from our usual 50%), with final payment still not due until 70 days before travel (so October to December, depending on your date of travel).

Plus with many of our properties, these deposits are also FULLY-REFUNDABLE up until 30 Days of check-in and if Covid-19 related restrictions prevent you from travelling, a lot of our privately-owned chalets and hotels are offering a full-refund for Covid-related cancellations or full credit for the following 2021-22 winter season.

As these special flexible booking offers are popular they are currently  booking up fast with the European travellers.

Simply give us a call on 1300 803 156 for up-to-date availability and advice on the best early booking offers, and for advice on the best time to go skiing in France.

Hotel & Residence Le Hameau du Kashmir - Val Thorens
Hotel & Residence Le Hameau du Kashmir

Other articles that may interest you:

When is the best time to go skiing in France?

10 Reasons Why You Should Choose France For Your Next Ski Holiday