Why can’t a private jet land at Courchevel?

The next ski season is just around the corner, so we’re getting ready for a busy time, arranging private jet and helicopter flights into airports serving the top ski resorts in both Europe and the USA.

Landing at Courchevel is something that we are asked about every year. The airport is in the heart of the French alps and you can see it from the slopes, yet it’s not possible to charter a private jet to land there. Below we explain why.

Contact our Flight Team on +44 (0) 1747 642 777 (24 hours) for advice and prices on options for travelling to Courchevel by private jet or helicopter.

Courchevel Airport. Image: Hugues Mitton

But why have I seen private jets landing at Courchevel?

You may have either have landed at Courchevel in a private aircraft or seen private flights landing at the airport.

However the French Aviation Authority does not allow commercially chartered private flights to land at Courchevel due to the short length of the runway (525 metres); the uphill gradient of the runway, the steep approach; and the ‘no go around‘ procedure.

Privately-owned aircraft can land at Courchevel. Commercial private jets can’t.

What’s the difference between a ‘commercial’ private aircraft and a ‘privately-owned’ one?

A private flight is when an owner of the aircraft (or one of their friends/ family) are using the aircraft for private use. No money changes hands for the use of the aircraft and the aircraft is therefore regulated differently to one that is offered for third party use.

A ‘commercial’ private jet flight is when the customer has paid for the charter of that aircraft. The rules for commercial flights are more stringent than private flights and include limitations on crew duty hours, runway length and other stricter safety considerations.

For commercial private jet charter the minimum stopping distance for the aircraft is multiplied by 1.6, to create the minimum landing distance required (LDR). Which makes Courchevel’s runway too short for all commercial private flights. Read more on private jet runway length requirements.

What does a landing at Courchevel look like?

What are the alternatives to Courchevel?

Courchevel ski infographic

You can still land at Courchevel by helicopter.

So we fly many clients into Courchevel that way, combining a private jet flight to another airport with a helicopter transfer direct to Courchevel.

Nearby private jet airports, which can accommodate commercially-chartered private jets include Chambery, Geneva, or Annecy.

If you’re considering private jet or helicopter flights to Courchevel or any other ski area, contact our Flight Team (24 hours) for advice or pricing on +44 (0) 1747 642 777.