If you can fly into here your visit to western Switzerland, northern Italy, and eastern France are close at hand. You would save many hours over flying into Paris CDG or ORY.
The airport is clean and easy, with great transportation access.
Lyon Airport, also known as Satolas or St Exupery (LYS) is a lovely airport if you're lucky enough to use the ordinary airport terminals. Sadly it's ghastly if you're stuck in the makeshift gazebo that is terminal 3.
The main airport, terminals 1 and 2, has some nice architecture, is clean and bright as you'd expect from any decent airport, and has a TGV station on site, that you can get to Paris from in 2 hours if need be, and a tram service that takes you to the centre of Lyon in around half an hour.
And then there's Terminal 3. Terminal 3 is put up as a temporary structure every winter for the hoardes of mostly-British holidaymakers making their way to ski holidays in the Alps. It's busy, stuffy, cold and boring all at the same time. It's almost as if nobody using the regular terminals wants to see the cheap flight easyjet and Ryanair scum so they conveniently bundle them all off onto one side.
I'm still giving it 4 stars though because I've mostly flown from the main terminals and that's been pleasant pretty much every time :)
Small Airport with long distances and big queues. Just not enough personell for the tasks.
LSE is a mid-size airport for connecting flights.
I found my way around very easily, had a beer with friendly service and was pleased finding a desk with enough power plugs at my gate (23K) to recharge my notebook and catch up with work while waiting on the delayed flight.
And they had free WLAN, too. I have had to change planes in much worse locations, this felt effective, modern, professional and friendly.
For a regional airport, Lyon's is terrific. Interesting architecture and decor inside (though surrounded by what seems to be miles and miles of car parks outside). Easy connections to shuttles and public transit (train into the city center) and TGV connections to other cities. Whenever I've asked for help or directions, I've gotten great help from the staff, who spoke English well.
A lot of my journeys were including Lyon airport as a connexion hub and I've spent hours there, waiting to catch my flight.
The buildings are truly modern and welcoming. the one in which I am used to wait is decorated with designers furniture.
Warning: security checking is less tolerant than anywhere else I have ever traveled.
I have a love-hate relationship with Lyon Airport. I love the architecture of the train station; and the new nh hotel - and the fact that there is an hourly bus service to Grenoble. I hate the fact that the luggage comes out so slowly, especially during the winter when there are so many skis (and travel with carry-on whenever I can), and hate the astronomical taxi prices to get to Grenoble (200-300 EUR). Shops are a waste of time, and the food options aren't that great either.
The Pizza Hut outlet is the most obvious - but terribly slow at peak times. If you've got more time to kill there's a bar at the back of the airport with a place you can setup a laptop and plug in to charge (although WiFi isn't free). There is a nicer bar upstairs, although I forget what it's called.
At some times of the year - they put out a few deck-chairs - which are great for snoozing in - but don't miss your flight.
If you do get stuck there overnight - due to the Grenoble bus finishing at 11:30 (unless you pre-book the 00:30 72 hours in advance of when your flight will be delayed!) - the nh hotel is just across the transport area - and offers great rooms at a walk-up rate of 99 EUR (or did when I walked up).
The airport is around 25 km outside of Lyon, there is tram from
Behind the main station that takes around 30 mins. A taxi from Lyon can be over 50 euros.
The airport has 3 terminals, some parts are very dated and terminal 3 has just limited facilities and is like a shed, there's lots of walking and lots of standing as not enough seats etc.
Shopping and eating facilities are not great.
Can't beat the flagship international airports ( eg Amsterdam , Copenhagen or Singapore) but is not bad for at all ; Easy parking , quick turnaround from check-in to boarding . Count 30min by car from center Lyon to be on safe side . Also has a major TGV hub.
Lyon airport is quite big with flights travelling to many destinations with several big airlines. The airport is clean and has lots of facilities. Food and drink is all over priced but thats to be expected in an airport. Staff are friendly and speak good english.
Small airport with bad signage, rude staff and too long ways for a small airport. Some lifts didn't work which made the way even longer. Connection to city centre is good but expensive (13 Euro for a 30 min tram ride).
Aéroport Saint-Exupéry is a small and average airport, outside of Lyon. Waiting time, check-in, security control, cleanliness of washrooms, prices of refreshments and snacks - nothing extraordinary.
Fairly small airport, but well laid out.
Transfers into Lyon are fairly poorly documented, since they changed in August 2010.
The RhoneExpress tram has replaced the Satobus for transport into Lyon town centre. It suited us well, since our hotel was very close to the destination at Part-Dieu, but it could be annoying if you are relying on one of the other stops the Satobus used to use. The cost is a bit higher than the bus, 23Euros return for adults, 19Euros return for ages 12-25, and free for under 12s. As far as I could see, the only alternative to the RhoneExpress is a taxi or private car.
The staff on the RhoneExpress were extremely helpful, even whlie there were riots and demonstrations going on throughout Lyon, they got us to the airport in good time, laying on a coach for the last stage of the trip since the tram-lines were blockaded by schoolkids.
Lyons 'Aeroport Saint-Exupery' is in my opinion a shining example of a modern transport hub. Although better known for the striking architecture of the connecting train station it should be famous for being an excellent Airport. I worked for Thomson during the winter of 2007-2008 and had to transfer guests every week from Lyon airport to the French alps. During the winter there are around 15 flight from the U.K, which means thousands of people wanting to get to their destination a quickly as possible. The downside to this is the luggage system of the airport struggles to cope with the shear amount of cases and skis. It can regularly take over an hour to get from the plan to actually retrieving your luggage. The next problem with Lyon is that there is no where close to the airport for coaches to pick up guests, once they have collected their luggage they have to walk for at least 10 minutes across the sky walk, through the train station and across the car park to the waiting coaches.
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