At Geneva Airport (GVA), there is a comprehensive selection of car hire companies in both the Swiss and French sectors. You may rent a car from the top companies at discounted prices through Holiday Autos.
In the French sector, there are:
More about car rental options in both the Swiss and French sectors, with best access routes, and locations of nearby fuel stations! Always try to reserve a rental car before arrival at the airport. Reservation at the airport is possible, but usually much more expensive.
Car Hire from Geneva Airport
Car rental on the Swiss side of Geneva Airport (GVA)
If you intend to drive on the Swiss autoroute, it is better to rent a car from the Swiss sector of Geneva Airport, as the vignette will be supplied by the rental company as standard and will be applied to the vehicle windscreen. In winter, all car hire companies in the Swiss sector provide snow-tyres as standard. Car rental desks are located at the west-end of the terminal building, arrivals level. Pick-up and drop-off is on the ground floor of the multi-level car park P51, which is located 400m from the terminal. There is a shuttle bus with departures every 10 mins, and a countdown timer displaying the duration until the next departure. If it's not raining and your bag has wheels, it's an easy walk.
Car hire on the French side of Geneva Airport (GVA)
On the French sector of GVA, car hire may be less expensive. The Swiss autoroute vignette is not supplied as standard. There is a small chance that the vehicle may have a vignette applied by a previous renter, but never rely on this. More info on driving from Geneva Airport to Chamonix page.
In France, it is compulsory to have a breathalyser kit in your car. Check with the car hire company to see if this is included in the fee. In winter, snow-tyres are probably included as standard but do not rely on this and always inquire to confirm. Snow-tyres may be a supplementary charge.
It is possible to hire a car on the French side of the GVA even if you arrive in the International sector. After collecting your baggage, go up to the Departures level, turn right to the east-end of the terminal and follow the "destination France" signs. Go through customs, next to the Air France (KLM) desk into the car hire area.
If you have hired a car in advance, be prepared to show your hire contract to the French customs officer to justify passage into France.
Pick-up and drop-off is located in parking P21, which is inside the airport perimeter and immediately outside the car hire hall. Surprisingly convenient and frequently with a base price low cost option. But when compared with the all-inclusive packages offered on the Swiss side, there may be no actual saving.
Return a Hire Car to Geneva Airport
Vehicles are returned to the same locations as pick-up in P51 and P21, respectively. We provide info for drivers, who are not familiar with GVA with the best return routes into Geneva Airport for either P51 or P21. Also, fuel stations locations so that the vehicle can be returned with a full tank.
Fuel Stations: Return a hire car with a full fuel tank
Most car hire companies require the car hire to be returned with a full tank. Some car hire companies may give you the option to return the vehicle with the same level of fuel as supplied at pick-up. Most, if not all, companies levy a premium rate to fill a fuel tank on any vehicle returned with a less than full tank. The premium refill charge is taken against the renter's credit card, as a "not present" transaction. This is standard industry practice. To avoid the premium charge, return the vehicle with a full fuel tank.
Fuel Stations near Geneva Airport
- Agip, World trade Centre II - In front of the World Trade Centre 2 building and less than 100m from the entrance to P51 a small AGIP self-service station is easily missed. Ignore the sign that state, "Car hire companies only". Anyone with a debit or credit card can buy fuel from this four pump station. There is no human on-site. Open 24 hours.
- BP, Route de Ferney - along Rte de Ferney there are three service stations: Bp Service Grand-Saconnex Ouest, Bp Service Grand-Saconnex Est. There is also a Tamoil Garage du Grand Saconnex.
- Migrol, Ave Louis Casai - Coming from central Geneva, Avenue Louis Casai is lined with petrol stations. On the right, as you approach the airport, there is a Migrol Station with self-service and pay at the counter. On the left side, there are 3 service stations: Migrol Service Cointrin (self-service and pay at the counter), an Esso Station (pay at the kiosk) and a Tamoil (self-service only).
- Total, Ferney-Voltaire - Immediately after crossing the border into France, there is a Total Oil Station on the right.
- Read more info on this topic on snowheads.com
Fuel stations near Geneva Airport
Fuel prices between France and Switzerland can differ significantly; mainly due to low VAT on petrol in Switzerland. Exchange rates must enter into any calculation to determine the best price location. Check The AA website for current fuel prices to determine the difference between French & Swiss pricing. Choose the price option that works best with the route planned and allow enough time to re-fuel the vehicle, before returning it to the car hire company.
Access Routes to Car Hire Return at Geneva Airport
If a car is picked-up in one sector (Swiss / France) but returned to the other sector, the car rental company may charge an extra fee to return the vehicle to the original sector.
Return a Hire Car to P51, Swiss Sector Car rental drop-off Geneva Airport
If the vehicle has been rented from the Swiss sector P51 of Geneva Airport, it must be returned to P51, on the ground floor (Level 1) of this multi-storey car park, located about 400m from the terminal.
P51 has two entrances and two exits. Route de Pré-Bois Entrance is best to use; As you drive in, you find yourself at Level 1 (ground level), which is the hire car return point. Don't use Route de l'Aéroport Entrance, as you will have to descend two levels and take two circuits of the multi-storey car park. Signposting is not clear.
The routes that we suggest below are for the occasional visitor to Geneva Airport that wishes to return a hire car. These routes are not the best for dropping off/ collecting people at the airport. They are the best route for car rental drop-offs.
Access to P51 car park via Autoroute 1 or via Avenue Louis-Casai Route (passing through Geneva city centre):
- via Autoroute 1: After exiting from Tunnel de Vernier, there are blue signs leaving the Autoroute 1 for "Meyrin / Vernier" and green signs to continue on the Autoroute for "Lausanne / Geneva Airport / Palexpo Arena". This is the exit from the Autoroute. Do not continue along the Autoroute even though the signs do say Geneva Airport. On exiting the Autoroute 1, move into in the centre lane, follow the sign for "Vernier", exit 4 (Zone Industriale (Z.I.) Meyrin Vernier). Drive up the exit ramp to the traffic lights junction with Route de Vernier; get in the left lane and turn left on to Route de Vernier for about 400m; move into the right lane and at the traffic lights turn right on to Route de Pré-Bois. Continue along Route de Pré-Bois, pass through more sets of traffic lights until you see signs for a left turn on to Route de l'Aéroport for "Balexert / Les Avanchets / P51 car rental return". After turning left on to Route de l'Aéroport there is an option to access P51 after 150m. You must be in the right lane to turn into P51. You will enter on Level 3 and have to descend two levels to the Level 1 drop-off point.
For a fuel refill option and direct access to P51 Level 1, move into the left lane and continue along Route de l'Aéroport; at the junction go straight ahead, do not turn right. On your right there is the World Trade Center 2. At the end of the WTC2, take the small narrow road that descends to the right; this is easily missed, go slow! This slip road takes you around the WTC2 building, so that you pass by the Agip self-service service station. This is the final service station before P51. Passing it on your right, descend to the entrance of P51. All of this happens in a very short distance, so go slow. Once you are in P51, make sure you park the car in the sector dedicated to the specific rental company. See the image gallery bellow for a step-by-step route mapping.
- via Avenue Louis-Casai: If you have driven through Geneva city centre, and are approaching the Geneva Airport, on Avenue Louis Casai, there are 4 service stations but only one on the right side of the road. This is the Migrol Station, it is closest to the airport and is located at about 500m from P51. We recommend you fill the tank of the rental vehicle at the Migrol service station. After filling at the Migrol Station, continue down on Louis Casai on the left lane, signs for "Metrin Vernier/ P51 Illimite". Do not take the slip road on the righ for "Aeroport/ Palexpo Arena". Continue along Louis Casai until the very end. On top of the building in front, there is an " Easy Jet" sign. Turn right. Even though the P51 is on your left, do not turn left. Turn right on to Route de l'Aeroport. On your right there is the World Trade Center 2. At the end of the WTC2, take the small narrow road that descends to the right; this is easily missed, go slow! This slip road takes you around the WTC2 building, so that you pass by the Agip self-service service station. This is the final service station before P51. Passing it on your right, descend to the entrance of P51. All of this happens in a very short distance, so go slow. Once you are in P51, make sure you park the car in the sector dedicated to the specific rental company. See the image gallery bellow for a step-by-step route mapping.
The GPS coordinates for P51 are: latitude 46.2275/ longitude 6.1034.
Return a Hire Car to P21, French Sector of Geneva Airport (GVA)
When returning your rental car to P21, we recommend following signs for “Ferney" or "Ferney Voltaire”. Ignore signs for the airport; these will take you to the Swiss sector. P20 is a car park for everybody, don't get confused, rented cars have to be returned to P21.
- On Autoroute 1, coming from the direction of French/ Swiss border-crossing at Bardonnex, when approaching the airport, stay on the Autoroute; do not follow exit signs for the airport. Pass the airport and take junction 7 with a sign for "Gd-Saconnex / Ferney / Fret-cargo". After comming out from the Autoroute 1 you reach a roundabout.
For the closest fuel station, take the 1st exit on Route de Ferney. Along Route de Ferney, there are three service stations: Bp Service Grand-Saconnex Ouest, Bp Service Grand-Saconnex Est, Tamoil Station.
We have described the route up to the one closest to the airport. After refilling, drive back to the roundabout
If coming off the Autoroute, take the 2nd exit. If coming from the fuel station, take the 1st exit. Leaving the roundabout, continue up to the 1st set of traffic lights, drive straight through the intersection of Route de Ferney and Chemin du Bois-Brûlé, and follow the signs to La Faucille, Gex, and Ferney. This will take you through the tunnel towards France, leading you to the Ferney-Voltaire Douane. After you pass the Douane, you will make an immediate left onto Route Douanière. The sign "French Secteur" is right at the entrance of this two-lane road. This is the only way to reach Garage P21, where the rental car companies are located. Follow signs for the drop-off point.
See the map for other access routes from France to Geneva Airport.