Sleeping in Airports

Geneva Airport Guide

Whether you have a layover, overnight sleepover or are just quickly passing through, our Geneva Airport Guide is a great place to start planning your visit.  Here, you’ll find information on services and facilities available inside the airport – including details about airport lounges, WiFi, mobile charging points, lockers, 24-hour food options, nearby hotels, and everything in between.

I arrived at GVA at 8pm the day before my morning flight and was turned away at security. The staff emphasized that I can only enter the terminal on the same day as my flight. – a traveller

GVA Airport Overview

To help you plan your layover or overnight sleepover, here is a quick run-down about what to expect during your time at Geneva International Airport.

What to Expect

Geneva Airport (Code: GVA) is comprised of two terminals. Terminal 1 is divided into five piers (A, B, C, D and F), while Terminal 2 is used for charters and seasonal flights. The airport has a modest selection of shops, restaurants, cafes and services, but all close at about 10:00 PM and reopen around 5:00 AM – 6:00 AM. Free WiFi is available. For additional comfort during your layover, consider purchasing access to one of the airport’s lounges. See Airport Lounges in the guide below for location and hours.

Geneva Airport Guide
(Photo courtesy of a Guest traveller /26Aug2010)

Sleeping in Geneva Airport

If you are planning an overnight stay at the airport, be careful about leaving the terminal as the doors lock, and you won’t be able to get back in. Those who remain inside the airport after closing may be required to show identification and proof of departure. If you do not have a connecting flight, you will not be able to enter the terminals until the day of your flight, so if you exit the building, you need to keep this in mind.

Since doors are locked at night, the terminals are relatively quiet and dimly lit until cleaning crews arrive at about 4:00 AM, so consider eyeshades and earplugs. While there is plenty of seating throughout the airport, it consists primarily of hard chairs with armrests, making the floor the only sleep option in many areas. There is a second-floor waiting room in Terminal 1 that is reportedly quiet. You can also find some leather chairs in Terminal 1, near the exit to the train station, which might be good if you don’t mind sleeping while sitting up. Floors are not carpeted, so come prepared with something to lie on if you need to stretch out. Explore our guide to sleeping in Geneva Airport or read traveller airport reviews for more tips. For uninterrupted sleep, there are a few nearby airport hotels within easy shuttle distance of the airport. See the Airport Hotels section below for more info.

Good to Know

Tax-free shopping is available to arriving travellers, allowing for the purchase of any necessary items for use while in Switzerland. Showers are available.

To help us keep this guide up-to-date, you can add or update information or write a review to submit airport tips and photos. You can also visit the airport’s website for current information. For more airport information, continue scrolling down to explore more in our Geneva Airport Guide.

In this guide we may refer to locations as “landside” and “airside”. Landside is the public area of the terminal located in the non-secure zone, before security. Airside is the secure area of the terminal that you must reach by going through security.  For more information on Europe’s Schengen Area, click here.

Airport Hours

The airport is open from 4:00 AM – 12:00 AM.

Airport Hotels

If sleeping in the airport sounds like a nightmare, there are hotels near Geneva Airport:

  • ibis Styles Geneve Palexpo Aeroport – 10-minute walk to/from the airport or take bus #5 for two stops. » Check Rates
  • Hilton Geneva Hotel and Conference Center – Free airport shuttle is available. » Check Rates
  • Ibis Geneve Aeroport – Free airport shuttle runs every 20 minutes from 5:00 AM – 11:00 AM and 5:30 PM – 11:30 PM. » Check Rates
  • Nash Airport Hotel – The hotel is within walking distance, or you can take bus #10 to the Da Joinville stop. » Check Rates

For more options, visit Tripadvisor to see a list of hotels near Geneva Airport that can be sorted by price, distance, traveller rating and popularity.

Airport Lounges

Pay-per-use, Single Visit Passes & Lounge Memberships

Regardless of what class of service you are flying, there are lounges that you can enter by paying at the door, purchasing a lounge pass or through a lounge membership program. Visit the individual lounge page for more details about the lounge itself and find out how you can gain lounge access with just an economy class ticket!

  • Air France – KLM Lounge – Location: Main Terminal, Airside, 1st Floor. Lounge Access: Prepaid lounge pass • Lounge membership programs.
  • Crystal Lounge by Aspire – Location: Main Terminal, Airside, between Gates C53 and C54. Lounge Access: repaid lounge pass • Lounge membership programs. Hours: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM.
  • Horizon Lounge (Swissport) – Location: Main Terminal, Airside, Mezzanine Level. Lounge Access: Pay at the Door • Prepaid lounge pass • Lounge membership programs.
  • Marhaba Geneva Airport Lounge – Location: Terminal 1, Airside, Mezzanine Level.  Hours: varies.  Lounge Access: Pay at the Door • Prepaid lounge pass.

Airline Lounges

If you are a First or Business Class traveller, you may have access to the lounges listed below. For more information, check the airline’s website.

Main Terminal, Airside: British Airways Galleries Lounge • Swiss First Lounge • Swiss Senator Lounge • Swiss Business Lounge.

Related Pages: Geneva Airport Lounges

Drinking Water

Thirsty? Refill your water bottles at the drinking water fountains near Gate A8 and on the Mezzanine Level.

Food & Drinks

No 24-hour food concessions are available, so stock up on food and water before eateries close for the night.  Several food options are available from 5:00 AM – 10:00 PM or until the last flight departs for those in the transit zone.

Luggage Storage & Lockers

Storage facilities are available:

  • Left Luggage – Location: Landside, the CFF Railway Station level, behind the CFF/SBB counter. The storage fee is CHF 12 / item per day and a maximum storage period of 30 days. Hours: 7:30 AM – 8:00 PM.
  • Lockers – Self-service lockers are available in various sizes for rental periods of 6 hours to a maximum of 4 days. Sample fares for a small locker are CHF 5 / 6 hours. Meanwhile, an extra large locker costs CHF 10 / 6 hours. Location: Landside, on the CFF Railway Station level, in front of the CFF/SBB counter and behind the Chicorée Shop. Hours: 3:30AM – 12:30AM.

Mobile Charging

There are 15 Business Corners located Airside near boarding gates, which offer chairs with tables and USB and standard 220V sockets.

Rest & Relaxation Zones

No dedicated sleeping areas, quiet areas or rest zones exist. If this information has changed, click here to update this guide.

Showers

Freshen up (and loosen those stiff muscles) with a shower before your flight. Showers are available in three locations. Locations: Arrivals (landside, near baggage carousel # 6) • Arrivals (landside, near Post office) • Departures (airside, transit area, near the first class/business lounges). Rate: CHF 15 (includes soap, shampoo and towel).

Tokens can be purchased (cash only) at the following locations: the Welcome Desk Swissport (Location: arrivals level, near baggage carousel # 2 and 3. Hours: 7:30 AM – last flight) • Information Desk (Location: Landside, Arrivals Area. Hours: 7:00 AM – 11:00 PM.) • Nursery (Location: Airside, departures, transit area. Hours: 8:00 AM – 8:00 PM).

WiFi/Internet

Free WiFi is available at Geneva Airport. Connect to the “Free_WiFi_GVA” network. A mobile phone is needed in order to receive the access code, or you can scan your boarding pass at any of the six purple “Free WiFi GVA” self-service machines located throughout the terminals.

There are also Internet Terminals available in the Arrivals section at the Business Services centre.

More Airport Information

More Services, Facilities & Things To Do On A Layover

Dry Cleaning – A dry cleaner is available, offering dry cleaning, ironing, etc. Location: Railway Station. Hours: 8:00 AM – 8:00 PM (Mon – Fri) and 9:00 AM – 12:30 PM and 1:00 PM – 8:00 PM (Sat, Sun and Holidays).

Early Check-in – Check in your luggage the day before takeoff, at which time you will also receive your boarding card and seat assignment. Location: Railway Station.

Family Services

  • Baby Care Facilities – Parents will find a children’s area equipped with games, a kitchen, baby change facilities and a rest area for children. Location: Transit Zone, Mezzanine Level, Gates C.
  • Children’s Play Area – When you want to ensure your kids burn off all their energy before their flight, take them to the children’s play area. Location: in the transit area, between Gates A5 and A8.

Fast Track Service – As a premium service, customers with Fast Track security passes will be given priority service to ensure that wait times are minimal. Book online before midnight. Cost: 10.00 CHF (approx. €10.32).

Information Desks – A Tourist Information Desk in the Arrivals Area provides airport assistance. Hours: 7:00 AM – 11:00 PM. If you are in Transit, head to the Center Square, where you will find an additional Information Desk. Hours: unknown.

Luggage

  • Baggage Trolleys – Need a hand with your luggage? Baggage trolleys are available in 83 different locations around the airport. Rate: 2 Swiss francs or 2 Euros coins.
  • Luggage Storage & Lockers – see “Luggage Storage & Lockers” above.
  • Porters – If you need help with your luggage, porters are available to assist you. Rates: CHF 20 for 1 to 3 pieces of luggage from the curbside, Kiss&Fly area, P1, P20, P21, and the train station. CHF 30 for 1 to 3 pieces of luggage from P26 and P51.

Meditation Room – Location: transit area, mezzanine level.

Money

  • ATMs / Cash Machines – Need cash? ATMs are available. Machines are operated by Banque Cantonale de Genève (Landside, departures), La Poste (Landside, Arrivals), Raiffeisen (Landside, Arrivals) and UBS. Fees may apply, so check your bank’s fee schedule and daily withdrawal limit if you are travelling internationally. You may also want to notify your bank of your travel plans.
  • Currency Exchange – Global Exchange offers currency exchange services at 4 locations (Landside, Arrivals • Airside, Arrivals • Landside, Departures • Airside, Departures). Hours: Varying opening times, but the earliest is 5:10 AM and the latest closes at 11:45 PM. The Swiss Rail Counter can also provide currency. Location: Airport Railway Station. Hours: 7:30 AM – 8:15 PM.
  • TAX Refunds – Get your VAT Refund at two Global Exchange offices. Locations: Main terminal, Arrivals level • International area. Hours: 5:00 AM – 9:00 PM. Tax refunds can also be requested by mail. Use the mailbox located on the arrivals level near the visitor centre to send your slips.

Observation Deck – The Panorama Terrace is a rooftop terrace which is accessible to passengers in Terminal 1, Level 4. The deck has a refreshment bar and access to a projection room where movies about the airport are shown.

Pay Phones – At Geneva Airport, passengers can call Swiss phone numbers free of charge with the airport’s pay phones. Call cards must be purchased at Global Exchange or K Kiosk for international phone calls. Locations: Arrivals Level, Business Service Corner • Baggage Claim, Belt 4 • Departures Level, Landside, near Priority Lane • Arrivals Level, Satellite 40 • Boarding Area, Airside, near Gate A9-10 • near Gate C51 and C52.

Pharmacy – Pharmacie Principale – Location: Landside, Departures Level. Hours: 6:00 AM – 6:00 PM (Tue – Thu) • 6:00 AM – 7:00 PM (Fri – Mon).

Post Office – Send your last-minute postcards to friends and family from the airport’s post office. Locations: Landside, Arrivals Level. Hours: 8:00 AM – 12:00 AM, 01:00PM – 5:00PM (Mon-Fri) • 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM (Sat).

Shopping – There are duty-free stores (5 locations) and various stores selling clothing, souvenirs, chocolate, alcohol, books and more. The K Kiosk (Landside, Departures – Hours: 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM • Landside, Arrivals – Hours: 8:00 AM – 8:00 PM) may be handy for any last-minute items).

SIM Cards – A reader has asked us to include where to buy SIM Cards. If you know, click here to update this airport guide.

Smoking – There is a smoking room in the Terminal 1 transit area.

Travel Agencies – If you are arriving in Geneva and need local arrangements or help planning a last-minute trip abroad, there is a L’Tur Last Minute travel agency at the airport that can probably be of assistance. Location: Landside, Arrivals. Hours: 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM (Mon – Fri) • 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM (Sat – Sun).

Airlines
Geneva airport is served by the following airlines: Aegean Airlines • Aer Lingus • Air Algérie • Air Arabia • Air Baltic • Air Canada • Air China • Air France • Air Malta • Air Mauritius • Air Serbia • Anadolu Jet • Austrian Airlines • Azerbaijan Airlines • British Airways • Brussels Airlines • Chair Airlines • Cyprus Airways • Delta • EasyJet • Egyptair • El Al Israel Airlines • Emirates • Ethiopian Airlines • Etihad Airways • Eurowings • Finnair • FlyPlay • Iberia • Icelandair • Ita Airways • Jet2 • KLM • Kuwait Airways • LOT • Lufthansa • Luxair • Middle East Airlines • Norwegian • Nouvelair • Pegasus Airlines • Play • Qatar Airways • Royal Air Maroc • Royal Jordanian • SAS • Saudia • SunExpress • Swiss • TAP Portugal • Transavia • Tunisair • Turkish Airlines • United Airlines • Vueling • Wizz Air.
Airport Transportation: Getting To/From The Airport

Bus

Several city bus lines run to and from the airport as part of the UNIRESO network. Scheduled coach service for Annecy, Grenoble, Chambery and Lyon is also available directly from the airport. Most regional and international bus lines operate from Geneva coach station (Gare Routiere), a 10-minute walk from Gare Cornavin train station. For more information, visit the UNIRESO website. Passengers travelling at night can use the Noctambus service, which is part of the UNIRESO network. More information can be found on the Noctambus website.

Please note: All buses and trains from the airport to France pass through Swiss territory. Please be sure to have valid identification and visa, if required.

Car Rentals

There are on-site rental car agencies in the airport’s Swiss and French sectors. Passengers who need to rent a car in one sector and return it to the other may be charged a fee. The Swiss sector on-site rental agencies are: Avis • Budget • Dollar/Thrifty • Enterprise • Enterprise Go • Europcar • Hertz • National/Alamo • Sixt. The French sector on-site rental agencies are: Avis • Budget • Enterprise • Europcar • Hertz • Sixt.

Hotel Shuttles

Some hotels near Geneva Airport offer airport shuttle service: Crowne Plaza Genevaibis Genève Aéroport •  Hilton Geneva Hotel & Conference CentreHoliday Inn Express Geneva AirportMovenpick Hotel & Casino GenevaNash Pratik HotelNash Suites Airport HotelNH Geneva Airport HotelNovotel Geneve Airport France.

Hotel shuttles pick up their guests outside of the Arrivals Level.

See also Airport Hotels above.

Ride Sharing

Uber operates throughout Switzerland. A ride to the city centre will cost you about CHF 33.

Taxi

Taxis are readily available. At the time of this update, fares between GVA airport and the city range from CHF 50.00 (to the city centre’s right bank) to CHF 60.00 (to the city centre’s left bank).

Train

Geneva Airport has a train station under the runway, about 250m from the airport terminal, with direct access to Check-In and Arrivals Levels. All trains leaving the airport train station go directly to Geneva-Cornavin station (Gare Cornavin) in the city centre, about 7 minutes away. The Swiss rail network and long-distance trains from France and Italy service Gare Cornavin. Most Swiss ski resorts can be reached by train from Geneva Airport train station via Gare Cornavin.

Please note: All buses and trains from the airport to France pass through Swiss territory. Please be sure to have valid identification and visa, if required.

UNIRESO Public Transportation System

UNIRESO is Geneva’s public transportation system, which includes train, boat, bus and tram travel. Only one single ticket is needed to travel within the UNIRESO network. For more information, visit the UNIRESO website.

Airport Photo Gallery

Related Pages: Geneva Airport Photos

Last updated: 2024-02-22

This guide is for informational purposes only to assist with your planning.  All information, including rates and hours, is subject to change at any time without notice.   The information in this airport guide is based on information collected and/or received from the airports, lounges, hotels, transportation providers, and their websites. We are not representatives of any of the above-mentioned service providers. To report errors or to add/update any items mentioned in the guide: update the airport guide or  write a review.