Customers can book their tickets several weeks in advance, pay online and have the tickets sent to their home address. General health advice for skiers is also available on the website, with personalised advice soon to be available too. Contact details are given for each coach operator, as well as for nearby airports, local tourist offices, accommodation agencies, SNCF rail bookings and enquiries, and local weather information lines. It is also possible to buy ski passes for five resorts via Altibus. Finally, the website is also seeking to develop an events-based standpoint, with news of functions at various Alpine resorts.
French Alps, FRANCE Nine transport companies with the same objective grouped together to make access to ski resorts easier.
Detailed, comprehensive information, including coach arrival and departure times at SNCF stations, is published on the website. The service is extensively used by foreign visitors.
To offer flexible mobility between stations and ski resorts, and consequently encourage downhill and cross-country skiers alike to use public transport to get to the resorts of eastern Rhône-Alpes. Here, the dual aims of increasing ridership of seasonal public transport and reducing congestion on the motorways and mountain roads go hand in hand. Furthermore, altibus.com goes far beyond its initial transport-related remit. Other objectives include increased use of the French rail network to access ski resorts, through the link established between the nearest railway station and the final destination; as well as a gradual reduction in congestion – essentially during the school holidays – on the roads and motorways that lead to the mountains of Savoie, Haute-Savoie and Isère.
Three local-authority partners support Altibus: the Transport Directorate of Savoie Departmental Council, the Transport Department of Haute-Savoie Departmental Council, and Rhône-Alpes Regional Council; these are joined by a tourism-oriented partner, La Maison de Savoie (www.destination-savoie.com).
In addition to its transport remit, the Altibus website also offers a new perspective on the French Alps and their inhabitants, including a link to the website dedicated to the International Year of Mountains (http://www.mountains2002.org) set up by the UN. The SNCF network has to be able to monitor and respond to the extra traffic generated by the increased use of public transport as a result of this initiative.