In winter there are various different passes on offer, and the choice can be bewildering. All passes are now hands-free and don't require photos (except season passes) - they stay in your pocket and you no longer need to show your pass to the lift attendants.
The decision whether to buy a Courchevel or the 3 Valley lift pass really depends on your skiing level and how much you want to ski.
The 3 Valleys is the largest linked ski area in the world and anyone of any level of ability usually takes advantage of the full area pass. It offers unlimited access to 180 lifts, 600kms of piste and 8 resorts: Meribel/Mottaret, Courchevel, La Tania, Val Thorens, Les Menuires/St Martin, Orelle and Brides Les Bains. You don't have to be an expert skier to ski the 3 Valleys as there are plenty of greens and blues across the area to allow you to enjoy it.
Both passes are available from ½ days to two weeks online, check with the lift pass office for other available passes.
This is the local area pass that gives you unlimited access to the 62 lifts in the Courchevel Ski Area (150kms of piste). If you are a complete beginner* or have 1-2 weeks of skiing or boarding experience, you will probably find that the Courchevel Valley pass has more than enough to keep you challenged and entertained during your stay. Alternatively, if you don’t plan on skiing hard all day, every day, or have to get back to meet your kids from ski school, then this local area pass will also suit you; and remember, passes of 2 days or more can be upgraded on a daily basis to include the whole of the 3 Valley area.
If you are staying in Courchevel 1650, it is also possible to buy a day or half day pass for the lifts in this sector of Courchevel only. Perfect for a quick couple of hours blast on your doorstep.
* There are additional pass options for beginners - see Beginner Passes for more info
Beginner Lift Passes & Free Lifts in Courchevel
Free Passes & Lift Options for Beginners
There are a couple of options for beginner skiers, starting with simply using the free beginner lifts for the first day or so, and then progress to buying a local day or half day pass. In Courchevel the free lifts are:
La Tania: Troika
Le Praz 1300 : Envolée
Cou 1550: Roys
Cou 1650: Belvedere and Mickey
Cou 1850: Cospillot, Bellecote, and Etoiles
NB. not all of these are marked on the lift map.
Courchevel also offers a Mini Pass which gives you access to small sections of the ski area, ideal for those who want to stay local. It covers the Jardin Alpin, Grangettes, Praz and Verdons bubble lifts, the Ferme, Altiport and Ecureuil drag lifts and the Tovets chairlift. The mini pass can only be purchased for a full or half day, and the price is the same for adults and children. For example for €18.50 you can buy a day pass for the Ariondaz bubble, Mickeys, Belvedere and the Grange lift in Courchevel Moriond amazing value for a great beginners ski area. The disadvantage of buying your pass in this manner is that you will need to queue up each day to buy your ticket.
Another thing to consider is that if you are having ski school lessons, your instructor may decide to take the group to another area which is not covered by your pass. In this case it is generally less hassle to buy a week-long pass for the Courchevel Valley.
Family Ski Pass in Courchevel
If you are skiing “en famille” then the family pass option offers reduced rates for two adults and two to seven children aged 5-18 years old (from the same family) when you buy all your passes at the same time - under 5's ski for free!
Proof of age will be required and each member of the family will have their own hands free pass.
Family passes are available for both the Courchevel Valley and all 3 Valleys but not during the “Premieres Neiges” weeks in December or during the last week of the season.
The French Ski School (ESF) offers children’s lessons with slightly cheaper lift passes included in the price. Children must be under 13 years of age and from complete beginner to 2* level ski ability.
Pedestrian Lift Passes in Courchevel - Winter
Not everyone comes to Courchevel to ski, and when there are such beautiful panoramas to take in and cosy mountain restaurants to enjoy, we can understand why! Pedestrian rates are available for 1-7 day duration lift passes, one-way trips or you can buy a season ticket. The pedestrian pass is valid on the following lifts:
Courchevel / La Tania - Télécabines, Saulire téléphérique, chairlifts : Tovets, Col de la Loze, Crêtes, Gravelles, Trois Vallées, Dou des Lanches.
Méribel, Méribel-Mottaret, Menuires - Télécabines
St Martin de Belleville - Télécabine, St Martin 2 Chairlift
Val Thorens - Télécabines, Péclet Funitel, Caron Téléphérique
Discounted Ski Passes in Courchevel
Early/Late Season Discounts During the first and last few weeks of the season reduced rates apply to both the local and full area passes. The snow cover may not be as guaranteed as during peak season, but the pistes will be quieter, the service in bars and restaurants less frenetic and you could touch lucky with the weather!
Free Passes for Seniors and Youngsters
Lift passes are free for those over 75 or under 5 years of age and the Three Valleys lift pass company also offers additional discounts to skiers aged between 65-75. Proof of age is required as is a photograph for passes of 3 days or more.
The Liberte pass is a flexible pass for those planning on skiing for more than 8 days. The pass gets you a 10% discount on the daily rate and you are only charged when you use your pass.
Group 'Tribu' Ski Passes
Discounted rates for groups of 3 or more skiers, skiing for at least 6 days and all purchasing pass at same time.
Get 10 Euros off a Three Valley ski pass on every Staurday throughout the season.
Up to 50% discount is also available for disabled skiers and their accompanying person upon the presentation of a disability badge. Many of the ski lifts are handiski-accessible and lift operators are on hand to offer assistance when required. Adaptive ski equipment can be hired in resort and there is reserved parking at certain places throughout resort.
Cross Country Ski Passes in Courchevel
Good news for cross-country skiers - you do not need to buy a pass! Equipment can be hired from most sports shops and you can set off along the 67kms of trails in the Courchevel valley completely free of charge!
Epic Pass in Courchevel
The Epic Pass along with unlimited access to numerous resorts in the States also gives 5 days of free skiing in Courchevel.
To get your non-consecutive ski passes you simply need to go to the nearest Courchevel lift office with your Epic Pass (as long as your photo is on the pass, you don't need any other ID) where you will be given five one-day passes.
As the passes are individual day passes, the lift company recomend leaving the other ski passes at home as they risk all being validated by the first lift you take and you won't be able to use them on subsequent days!