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The wild provencal Camargue region of France and its historic cities and towns is served by tiny Nimes Airport, located five miles to the southwest of the town of the same name and famous for its Roman sites. The airport is a joint military/commercial facility with only five routes, three of which are seasonal. Onward transportation to Nimes is by shuttle bus or taxi, and car rental in Nimes Airport can be arranged. Hiring a car is the best means of travel around this spectacularly lovely region of France as reliable public transport is sparse.
Who to Book With
Avis, Hertz, Europcar and National all offer car hire in Nimes Airport, with their desks located in the Arrivals area of the terminal. Rental cars are stored in the complex’s car park.
Need to Know Essentials
The following documents should be shown at the vehicle collection point:
- A valid UK, EU or home country driving licence
- The credit card used for the reservation
- Your passport or a utility bill as confirmation of your ID
-Your booking confirmation
France drives on the right. Roads in the region are in good condition overall, although winter driving should be done with care and the correct winter tyres. UK drivers are now allowed to take advantage of the toll road tag lanes by using a telelpeage tag. Seatbelts, if fitted, are compulsory for all occupants, as is the use of a hands-free kit if a mobile phone is used while driving. Warning triangles and visibility vests must be carried and, from early 2013, single-use breathalyser kits must be kept in the car. Both automatic and manned petrol stations are widespread, with payment by card accepted, although UK drivers should note that cards issued in the UK may be refused. Parking laws are strictly enforced, with blue zone parking needing a disc from a shop, police station or tourist office.
Ground transportation from the airport to Nimes is by regular airport shuttle bus, taxi or hire car as there are no train services. Bus travel takes the longest, but is the least expensive, while taxi travel can be costly, especially for long distances. Passengers arriving at the airport can self-drive to the city for quick access. Trains reach the city just as quickly but do not run directly from the airport, while cheap buses take longer, at around 30 minutes, and cease to operate after midnight, leaving late arrivals with the option of an expensive taxi.
There is no train service linking Nimes Airport with the city, but TGV and TER trains run from Nimes Station in the city to Paris and Montpellier, respectively.
A taxi rank is located in front of the terminal. It is served by eight local taxi companies, all of which charge similar fares. Camacho and Garrigues take advance bookings.
Nimes Airport to Nimes city centre is about £15
Nimes Airport to Arles is about £40
Nimes Airport to Montpellier is about £70
Shuttle buses which link the airport with Nimes time their routes to coincide with flight arrivals. They wait for passengers outside the Arrivals exit. The journey to Nimes bus station takes around 35 minutes and costs around £4, with tickets purchased from the driver.
The tiny terminal at Nimes Airport doesn’t have much in the way of traveller conveniences, but the staff are friendly and helpful. At the time of writing, Ryanair offers a seasonal flight to Liverpool and regular flights to London-Luton and Brussels, with Air Dolomiti flying from Rome and Iberia from Palma de Mallorca on a seasonal basis.
Secure, covered parking is provided opposite the terminal at a rate of around £1.50 per hour or, for long-stay, around £30 per week.
Free Wi-Fi internet access is provided across the terminal.
An information desk is found in the terminal’s main hall.
Service Centre: +33 46 670 4949
Facilities for passengers with reduced mobility are somewhat basic, but include dedicated parking spaces close to the terminal, wheelchair availability and adapted toilets. Disabled passengers are required to inform their airline of their need for assistance in advance of travel.
Restaurants and Bars
A bar serving alcoholic drinks, coffee, tea and snacks is found in the Arrivals areas and the Côte Sud Restaurant offers à la-carte or a set, three-course lunch menu Monday through Friday and Sunday at a cost of around £12.
Money and ATMs
An ATM can be found at the main entrance to the terminal.
On the ground floor of the Departures lounge is a shop selling souvenirs, Languedoc pottery items, tobacco products, books and newspapers, with another similar shop in the boarding area offering wines, drinks and local specialities.