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Geneva Airport Transfer - Best company to use?

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New York, New York
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Geneva Airport Transfer - Best company to use?

There are eight of us arriving on four different flights around the same time. Any recommendations for the most reliable (and reasonably priced) bus company to take us and our ski equipment to Chamonix? Private transfer makes the most sense, I think and we will want airport to hotel service. I have heard mixed things about Alpy bus.

Thanks in advance!

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31. Re: Geneva Airport Transfer - Best company to use?

I would definitely not recommend Chamexpress. I used them once and they were terrible. They were late to pick me up. I tried many time to get through to them but they never answered the phone. When we eventually were picked up and arrived in Chamonix, they would not drop us off at the place we'd asked for (a public car park) but made us walk around 200m with all our luggage in the snow.

I would recommend using Chamonix Shuttles. I have used them many times and they have always been there waiting for me at the airport and offer a proper door to door service.

I have also heard bad reviews about Alpybus, although have never used them myslef.

Chamonix
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32. Re: Geneva Airport Transfer - Best company to use?

Chamexpress has read the last 3 reviews and would make the following comments:

It is all too easy to hide behind an annomymous review on such forums. With no real names given or precise details Chamexpress cannot respond to these postings accurately or indeed check if the postings made are accurate. It should also be noted that these 3 reviewers are not regular posters but only joined at the time of this posting. So perhaps are using this forum to 'vent spleen' but have not approached Chamexpress directly. Without real names this will never be known.

So Chamexpress can only respond in general to these postings.

Once you have completed the booking process with Chamexpress you receive a ticket instantly to your email listing all your transfer details. It also holds an emergency mobile number that is only given to those travelling in that direction. This is to ensure that anyone travelling that day can reach Chamexpress. Passengers should print off this ticket so they have all the relevant information. Chamexpress has been astounded by the number of people that do not bother to do this and so leave themselves without the details of their transfer or the emergency contact number. If people say they are unable to get through perhaps they are calling the wrong number because they do not have their ticket with them. The emergency number is always answered when transfers are running. The office number is subject to usual office hours. Many customers also 'prank call' on the emergency number by ringing then cutting off before it is answered in the hope Chamexpress will call back. Chamexpress do not respond to such calls as it is assumed your call cannot be urgent if you cut it off.

Whilst Chamexpress make every effort to run to time this is always subject to circumstances beyond our control such as taffic and road conditions and weather. Any road transport can be affected by this. Again, our experience shows that some people try to keep time at the airport to an absolute minimum and therefore do not allow time for unforeseen circumstances, such as traffic, when selecting their transfer time. Then when this lack of contingency backfires, blame the transfer company.

Chamepxress operate a door to door service. However, this is not absolute if that 'door' is inaccessible for any reason such as road conditions, weather, pedestrianised areas etc. In these circumstances, we endeavour to drop you as close as possible while maintaining the safety of the driver, passengers and the vehicle.

Chamexpress is not a taxi service and as such has to operate under International Passenger Transport Law. Once key difference is that your exact destination must be know in advance, whereas in a taxi you tell the driver where you want to go when you get in. During the automated booking process you are asked to select a specific pick up/drop off. This can be amended up to 5pm the day before travel for a small fee (something other transfer companies charge for). The drivers can only drop you off at the place listed on their work sheets otherwise they are driving off route and so driving uninsured.

If someone has been charged twice due to an error on the part of Chamexpress then they will of course be refunded, following an investigation of the matter. However, Chamexpress do not give refunds for clients booking twice by mistake, making mistakes with times and dates, changes to times or dates or cancellations. This is much the same as the low fare airlines.

It should be noted that all of the above situations are covered in the terms and conditions of booking. In order to proceed with your booking you have to tick the box to say you have read, understood and agree to these terms and conditions. Without this tick your booking will be refused. Perhaps these 3 reviewers are examples of people who just tick the box to proceed without actually reading the terms of the contract they are entering into. Then when those conditions are appplied and do not suit them they post negative reviews.

Chamexpress is somewhat dubious of the review by Mal102. This is because, only this Saturday, one of the owners of Chamexpress was approached by one of the owners of Chamonix Shuttles who asked Chamexpress to put up our prices because Chamonix Shuttles felt that the low fare services, including Alpybus, were taking business away from them. If Mal102 had used them so frequently and they were so good then why did he/she change to Chamexpress? Could this be self promotion by a friend?

As for Ormeys statement that Chamexpress have not returned his/her calls, this is factually impossible. The Chamexpress office does not have the facility to leave a message so it is impossble to ignore a message you cannot receive. Without a name Chamexpress cannot confirm if Chamexpress have received the email referred to.

On a final note Chamexpress transfer many tens of thousands of people each year. We have many loyal customers who find our service to be reliable and of good value. Transfers that do not run smoothly are few and far between and usually explained by circumstances beyond our control or customer error.

Chamexpress

Chamonix
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33. Re: Geneva Airport Transfer - Best company to use?

Gosh Chamexpress do seem to be getting a bad rap.

Andrew from Chamexpress told me that if I let everyone know that when Chamexpress say their bookings are non-transferable they absolutely mean it, no exceptions, then he would be OK with that. (We didn't want or expect a refund, but had changed the day of travel to tomorrow, and despite them having seats free tomorrow, they will not under any circumstances give us a seat unless we pay them another EUR 25 - how's that for customer service??) He also had no problem with us not using them ever again.

So be warned! If your travel plans could be flexible or may change for any reason, and/or if you'd like to wait for your transfer inside and out of the cold (try waiting 25 minutes at minus ten, at a busstop that is 15 minutes walk from our fully accessible house, this from a "door to door" service), then Chamexpress is not for you!

On the positive side, we have always been delighted by the service and professionalism and flexibility of Mountain Dropoffs - at a similar price you get to wait inside for them to arrive, and they will do their best to be flexible and accomodating - to the point of finding you a transfer with another company if they don't have a van at that time. We highly recommend them as a transfer service - and use them many many times each year.

Our mistake to have tried another service this time.

Thanks.

Chamonix
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34. Re: Geneva Airport Transfer - Best company to use?

With reference to the last posting above:

It has been explained a number of times on this forum. When you purchase a ticket it is non-refundable and non-transferable. This is clearly stated on our website, terms and conditions, and on the travel ticket itself.

The customer is required to tick a box to agree to the terms and conditions before the booking can progress.

It was explained to the person above that there is a choice of transfer operators within the Chamonix Valley. However, some are unlicenced, uninsured, pay their drivers 'cash-in hand' etc. and employ drivers without the correct work visas.

However, Chamexpress are based in the Chamonix Valley, are fully French registered, insured, and licenced, pay our taxes, and our drivers, correctly because we operate 'above board' and legally. This is at considerable cost to ourselves. Therefore, by the very nature of a low-fare business model (easyjet etc.) the customers who make no changes are not required to subsidise in their own ticket price those who require 'flexibility'.

With respect of the 'pick-up' point; it is the customer who selects their own pick-up point. We do not dictate this to them. They simply select their accommodation from the drop-down menu list on the booking form, or can even enter in a specific address for a private house/chalet.

As for customer service: We will always go 'the extra mile' to help if we can. for example. Customers on delayed flights are placed on the next available transfer FREE. And with a service every 45 minutes this is something no other transfer company can do. (read their small print!). When Geneva Airport was closed on New Years Eve and flights were diverted. We laid on extra buses FREE to ensure that no-one spent NYE in Geneva but all were transported to Chamonix.

However, we will apply the booking terms and conditions equally and fairly to everyone irrespective of their individual situation.

Regards.

chamexpress

Chamonix
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35. Re: Geneva Airport Transfer - Best company to use?

Sorry to continue this (gosh!) but just a couple of points of clarification:

I hope that Chamexpress are not implying that Mountain Dropoffs are illegal, or employ illegally, or are unlicenced or uninsured. The inference was subtle - and even hopefully not intended, so I'm just making sure nobody thinks that is true.

Pick-up point - we did enter our address on the website, but were told in reply that we needed to go to another address for the pickup... Perhaps there is a glitch in the online booking system, you might want to take a look at it - or perhaps it just needs explaining better online? Certainly we were told that our pickup point would be at an address where there is only a busstop, despite what we entered.

Going the extra mile - I will think of that tomorrow, as I try to reschedule my baby's feed so that I can spend 2 hours driving to and from Geneva to collect my husband, and especially to avoid having to pull over and feed her in the cold en route. After all she has already spent 25 minutes this week in a freezing car while we were waiting to make sure that Chamexpress actually picked her dad up from his freezing busstop.

I will also try and think of that when I explain to my son that he will not be able to go to hockey practice after school tomorrow (come to think of it, I'll have to find someone to pick him up from school too), as his mum will be en route to or from Geneva. Glad to hear that you made the New Years Eve tourists happy, though. I guess that's really going the extra mile. Sorry for the sarcasm but you've really messed up my Friday.

And I will anticipate your response by saying that yes, of course all of this was due to customer error, silly old us to think that you would be kind enough to transfer the unused return ticket to a bus with empty seats that will be making the journey from Gva to Cham anyway. We have certainly learnt our lesson and will read the fine print very carefully in future.

Thanks and have a good Friday.

36. Re: Geneva Airport Transfer - Best company to use?

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Chamonix
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37. Re: Geneva Airport Transfer - Best company to use?

Just a quick correction to your post above: Chamexpress does not charge EUR 25 per seat, it charges EUR 25 plus taxes (which they conveniently forget to mention until you have to hand over your credit card details - despite it being illegal in France to advertise any price without taxes..)

"la loi française indique clairement que les prix ne doivent pas tromper le consommateur, elle oblige donc déjà indirectement à donner aux clients des prix toutes taxes et surcharge comprise"

And thanks for the tip, we did in the end go with another transfer company... and the price was EUR 30 for a last minute booking, not EUR 40 as Chamexpress seem to point out that everyone else charges. Once again just to make sure that nobody infers anything incorrectly from Chamexpress's post.

Enough! A good weekend to all....

Chamonix
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38. Re: Geneva Airport Transfer - Best company to use?

With reference to the posting above. Chamexpress CLEARLY infomrm any customers CLEARLY on the prices page of our website that 5.5% TVA (VAT) is required to be added to the cost of the transfer seat.

As we have said before. It is common sense to read a website (any companies website) before you make a booking.

Chamexpress

39. Re: Geneva Airport Transfer - Best company to use?

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