Wednesday, July 24, 2024

What Is A French Motorhome Aire?


France is an extremely various nation with heaps to discover. From mountainous areas to hovering coastlines, lakes and plenty of great cities. It’s no surprise then that so many individuals select France as someplace to discover of their motorhome. 

However the place you’ll keep in France actually varies from once you’re exploring the UK. One of many main variations you’ll discover with the place you park your motorhome for the evening is the presence of motorhome aires. However what are they?

Motorhome aires are France’s reply to in a single day parking. They’re everywhere in the nation and supply a small spot with various ranges of amenities relying on the aire. 

In the event you’re travelling round this stunning nation in your motorhome then the probabilities are that you simply’ll keep in an air at the very least one aire throughout your go to. In the event you’ve by no means skilled the French motorhome aire earlier than, this information tells you every part you want to know and what to anticipate. 

What Are Motorhome Aires In France?

There are two various kinds of aire in France; the Aire de Service and the Aire de Campingcar. You’ll discover these in two primary places, both close to a city or metropolis or at a service station alongside the motorway.

The factor about French aires is that there are main variations between websites and this is likely one of the issues that makes them so fascinating. You’ll by no means keep in two an identical aires.

You’ll discover loads of aires de service at service stations alongside lots of the primary roads and motorways by way of the nation. These service areas are similar to what we now have right here within the UK solely with the addition of motorhome aires. 

These are areas devoted to motorhome parking and that include varied primary amenities. This may embody gray wastewater dumps, cassette bathroom emptying and a recent water provide. Though what you’ll get will differ from place to put. 

It’s vital to do not forget that motorhome aires will not be designed to be stayed in for the entire size of your keep. They’re extra of a service space and can be utilized you probably have an in a single day cease in your journey to your closing vacation spot. 

Additionally remember the fact that these parking spots are sometimes shared with vehicles and different massive autos. Because of this they will get fairly noisy and busy at evening so when you’re staying over, it may be greatest to pack a pair of earplugs!

However there are additionally aires de campingcar positioned round France and these are the areas you’ll normally discover simply exterior of cities. These are what are thought of by many to be a real aire and there are such a lot of of them! Most of them are only a few minutes stroll from the city though do remember the fact that some require a price to make use of however there’ll usually be indicators round to let what you want to do. What’s extra, when you do need to pay, it’s not normally lots. 

In some places, you’ll discover aires de campingcar spots which can be free to make use of in a single day however it’s possible you’ll have to pay a price when you keep on within the morning. 

Not like the aires de service, the aires de campingcar don’t usually include any amenities. Whereas they may be in additional nice places, it’s nonetheless not a good suggestion to pitch a chair exterior to soak up the view as that is frowned upon.

What’s The Idea Behind The Motorhome Aire?

Aires in France will not be the identical as campsites or caravan websites in that there isn’t a reserving system. Whenever you arrive on the aire, if it’s empty, you should use it. If it’s not, then you definitely’ll have to seek out some place else. 

On prime of this, motorhome house owners are permitted to remain within the spot for so long as they want, so long as it’s no more than 24 hours, though there are some aires that permit longer stays, and might come and go as they please. For instance, with a campsite, you’re usually given a time at which you’ll arrive and a time that you will need to go away however this doesn’t apply with aires. That mentioned, you’re not typically anticipated to maneuver the motorhome through the evening except you’re close to a seaport.

If it’s a must to pay to make use of the aire then there’ll probably be a ticket machine. These days, these machines take money or card so that you received’t want to fret about having spare change as a result of, when you’re something like me, I by no means do and use my card for every part. In truth, you’ll discover that some are card solely which actually helps. 

There are different aires that require you to make use of a token. These might be bought from close by institutions similar to outlets or bars. There must be an info board detailing what you want to do and the place you want to go. This will even give you info on how lengthy you should use the aire.

The amenities you’ll get with an air de campingcar could also be just like the aires de service however they could work another way. For instance, lots of the free aires present a recent water provide and bathroom emptying however these include an extra price. The charges aren’t lots, usually only a few euros though when you’re trying to eliminate gray water then this doesn’t normally price something. 

Whereas not as frequent, there are some aires that include an electrical hook up. In any case, the aires are normally unmanned and also you’re anticipated to serve your self for every part you want. 

A Notice On Service Factors

Service solely factors shouldn’t be confused with motorhome aires. These service factors are areas the place you possibly can empty gray water and accumulate recent water. Some might provide cassette bathroom emptying however this isn’t the case throughout the board.

Notice that service solely areas normally require a small price however that is usually not more than round three euros. You’ll usually discover them on the roadside or close to to aires de campingcar spots. 

Who Owns The Motorhome Aires?

Aires in France are normally owned by the native authority. They place these aires as a result of they’re assured that it’ll convey extra guests to the city who will in flip help native enterprise similar to cafes, eating places and outlets.

There are additionally, nonetheless, Aires de Communales that are group run aires. Locals arrange these aires with a view to herald tourism and so they’re normally very nicely taken care of. 

Different aires are owned by industrial companies and are positioned on personal land. You’ll discover that loads of these aires are close to to correct campsites.

Is It Protected To Use A French Motorhome Aire?

In the event you’re utilizing an aire in a small city or village then they’re normally very secure. It’s actually no completely different than leaving your automotive in a public parking house. In fact, you’ll nonetheless wish to make use of your regular security habits and use your frequent sense. Make sure you use your alarm and ensure that the motorhome is saved locked in case you are leaving it. 

Whenever you go to an aire at a service station, you’ll most likely really feel barely much less secure as these are a lot busier and there’s a hub of exercise. Nonetheless, when you ever really feel unsafe to the purpose that it’s making you uncomfortable, then I’d merely recommend shifting on. 

Do You Have To Pay To Keep In A French Motorhome Aire?

As I’ve mentioned, there are some French motorhome aires that require a small price whereas others don’t price a cent. The costliest aires shall be round fifteen euros with the most cost effective being simply two or three. How a lot you pay will depend upon what providers can be found.

You might also discover that some aires are free to park in however if you wish to use any of the providers, you’ll need to pay a small price. 

However there’s no minimize and dry rule on how a lot they cost for the usage of an aire so it’s at all times greatest to verify this earlier than you park utilizing the data boards on website.

Whereas most ticket machines will take playing cards, I’ve heard tales of UK playing cards being declined. Subsequently, it’s at all times a good suggestion to attempt to have an alternate choice similar to carrying a little bit of spare change. 

If there’s No Reserving System, How Do I Know If I’ll Get A House?

French motorhome aires are extremely sensible and provides motorhome customers someplace to relaxation and have entry to the amenities they want. Nonetheless, and not using a reserving system you possibly can by no means assure that you simply’re going to get a spot. In the event you arrive and the aire is in use, it’s robust luck and also you’ll have to seek out some place else. 

For probably the most half, it actually depends upon what time you get there. Those that arrive round late morning are more likely to get a spot than those that flip up later within the day.

However in some circumstances, aires can replenish by 12pm particularly in the event that they’re in a preferred location. Nonetheless, when you’re travelling out of season, it’s possible you’ll discover that you simply get an area wherever you go whatever the time.

However as a result of there’s a great likelihood that you simply received’t get an area, it’s at all times sensible to have a again up plan. This may be shifting to the following city over or at worst, discovering an area campsite that has a spare pitch when you’re trying to keep in a single day. 

Discovering Motorhome Aires Close to You

In the event you journey to France, you’re going to see loads of indicators directing you to native aires. These indicators have an image of a motorhome and could also be black and blue or inexperienced in color.

However when you don’t fancy counting on street indicators in a rustic that you simply’re not acquainted with, you might be grateful that we stay in a digital age the place cellular apps work for just about something, together with discovering an aire. You’ll discover loads of motorhome apps which can be full of info on the closest aires so you possibly can plan prematurely the place you’ll cease every evening.

Nonetheless, if you would like a extra conventional method, there are additionally a few books accessible that record the situation of aires. One e-book is devoted to the north a part of the nation whereas the opposite is devoted to the south. What’s nice about these books is that additionally they present info on what amenities can be found in addition to how a lot you possibly can count on to pay. On the draw back, they might not have the freshest info in comparison with the app so that is one thing price contemplating.

One of the frequent methods to get to France from the UK is through the ferry or the Eurostar. So loads of motorhome house owners wish to know whether or not there are any aires as you enter France from the tunnel or ports. The excellent news is that there are!

Nonetheless, it’s a must to remember the fact that that is an especially busy space so getting a spot isn’t at all times simple. That mentioned, individuals are consistently coming and going so it’s possible you’ll strike it fortunate.


If you end up needing to take a pitstop whereas travelling by way of France in your motorhome then utilizing one of many French motorhome aires is a good concept. These devoted parking spots assist you to cease for a couple of minutes, just a few hours and even in a single day. Typically there’s a price however this isn’t lots and also you’ll usually have entry to primary amenities. 


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