Travelling to Lyon? Check out the guidebook we prepared for you below and find all the essential information about Lyon–Saint-Exupéry Airport (LYS). Check out what to do after landing at the airport, how to transfer between the port and the city and where to sleep near the Saint-Exupéry complex.
Table of contents
The Lyon airport is quite peculiar in this case, having no bus connection with the city center. Instead it offers a very convenient Rhônexpress tramway shuttling regularly every 15 minutes 7 days a week. It also offers a wide range of buses and intercity carriers to Grenoble, Saint-Etienne, Annecy and other cities.
The easiest way to get to Lyon’s center and vice versa. The express tram shuttles every 15 minutes and the journey takes precisely 29 minutes each way. A single ticket costs €16.10 for a one-way journey and €27.80 for a return one. If you are between 12 and 25 years old, you’ll pay €14.90 and €23.50.
Children up to 11 years old can travel for free. As you can see, the airport shuttle tram is quite expensive, even for the French standards. That is why we recommend checking out the Lyon City Card, described below.
Remember also to buy the Rhôneexpress tickets online or at the vending machines, as you’ll have to pay 4 euros more when buying on board.
A bit more expensive, but definitely more worthwhile option. Pay €42 for a card that not only includes Rhônexpress transfers, but also unlimited travel on all means of public transport in Lyon (metro, tramway, buses), discounts for the opera and theatre, and free entry to 23 museums! If you plan to stay a bit longer and explore the city, it would be a bull’s eye!
The fact that Saint-Exupéry complex does not provide any airport shuttle buses to Lyon doesn’t affect great communication with other nearby cities. The airport is served by regular intercity shuttles 365 days a year, reaching both the towns in Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region and some further destinations.
There are three tour operators available at the airport’s bus station, located on level 0 of Terminal 1. You can choose between OUIBUS, offering 6 lines and connecting 18 cities, FLIXBUS with 7 lines and 14 cities available or FAURE VERCORS with 1 line, yet reaching 7 towns.
They offer long-distance courses, e.g. to Bordeaux, Geneve or Dijon, as well as regional ones, e.g. to Grenoble, Valence or Saint-Ettienne.
Faure Vercors focuses more on the Rhône-Alpes region, reaching smaller cities like Bourgoin-Jallieu, Villefontaine or Voiron. If you want more information, check out the official airport website, section devoted to intercity buses.
If you don’t want to use public transportation, taxis can be also an attractive alternative. If you are going to the city center, you shall prepare €50-55€ by day and €65-70 by night. The journey to Lyon Part-Dieu shall be a bit cheaper, costing €45-50. For more information visit the following page.
The airport offers all the most popular car rental companies, including Europcar, Hertz, Enterprise, Avis and more. You can pick your car at the port or in the city, e.g. at the Perrache Rail Station or the Part Dieu Rail Station.Check out the full list of car rental companies along with all the useful data here.
The Saint Exupéry Airport, formerly known as Lyon Satolas Airport (IATA code: LYS) lies in Colombier-Saugnieu, around 20 km southeast of Lyon’s city center. It plays an important role for the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region, as well as for the entire country. In 2018 it served over 11 million passengers.
It offers flights to many regions in Europe, North Africa and Middle East (e.g. Dubai), being also a focus city for few big airlines, incl. AigleAzur, Air France, EasyJet, HOP!, Transavia France and Twin Jet. The port in Colombier-Saugnieu is designed to meet the highest standards in international aviation, providing all the facilities and amenities travellers may need.
You will find here a whole range of shops, offering perfumes, clothing, travel bags, souvenirs, newspapers, jewelry and more. Once feeling hungry, you can count on many different eateries and cafes, including the most popular international ones and some local companies.
Apart from those, there are also pharmacies, mother and baby rooms and showers if you want to refresh yourselves. Business passengers can count on several conference rooms. In case you want to withdraw or exchange money, you can do it using one of the ATM machines or currency exchange points. There is also an interfaith chapel, gathering travellers from different countries and religions.
Yes, it operates 24 hours, hence you don’t have to worry in case of any irregular flight hours.
Yes, you can sleep at the airport. Many people choose Terminal 1, because it has a substantial number of comfortable seating and couches, as well as a peaceful atmosphere and plenty of power outlets.
Of course remember that you are at the airport, so better prepare some earplugs, if you don’t like the general buzz. In case you want to enjoy full comfort at night, check out the hotels nearby.
Right now, the Saint-Exupéry airport comprises two terminals (1 and 2), interconnected on the landside by a central building, providing a foot bridge to the nearby Gare de Lyon Saint Exupéry station and the Rhônexpress terminus. It has two runaways and cargo facilities as well.
The Garede Saint-Exupéry TGV is located at the airport, about 5 minutes walking distance from the terminal. If you want to get to Lyon’s main railway station- Gare de Lyon-Part-Dieu, you need to take around 20 minutes (tram’s regular transfer time).
The best way would be to take the tram, as it shuttles regularly from 4:25am until midnight every day. In case you miss the last one, you can always order an official airport taxi.
Subscribe to our newsletter and receive interesting news, offers, discounts and promotions directly to your email