I get why some people may not like the idea of hitting the slopes they’re sun lovers; people who would rather lay by a pool with a fancy cocktail in their hand as their skin turns a little bit more pink as each second ticks by. The cold just isn’t for them.
For everyone else though, the idea of waking up to a white and blue mountain view with a coffee in hand, heading out to some unheard of altitude with the sound of snow scratching under your skis or board, followed by the sound of your mates laughing, your legs knackered after each day but not enough to stop you from walking to the bar and dancing on the tables for a spot of apres-ski is a dream come true. The problem is, well, the cost.
That’s what puts most people off. After all, a family of four heading to the French Alps for February half-term week can expect to pay almost £10,000 in total.
But what if hitting the slopes could be done on a budget? What if there were some ways to cut the costs dramatically? Below I will give you a few tips on how to save thousands.
If you’re looking for world-class runs, luxury treatments and high-end hotels, then you need to accept there is a premium attached. If not, however, and you are just looking for a great week away, then you should definitely consider ski holidays to Andorra, Italy, Scotland or Eastern Europe. These places offer incredible value and, as you’ll find out, you won’t have to sacrifice much in the way of anything. So long as it has snow, you’ll be smiling, trust me.
Pick your moments
Nothing is going to see your wallet start screaming more than seeing prices during peak times. I’m talking half-terms, easter, weekends and all those popular moments in the season. So, if you can afford to be flexible, then bend like you’ve never bent before.
Look at mid-week prices, gamble on an end-of-season dump of snow when the prices are slashed and go for shorter periods of time; that way accommodation, ski hire, lift passes and everything will be much, much cheaper.
Put it like this, if you head to a restaurant on the top of a mountain for a light-bite, let’s say sausages and chips, don’t expect there to be any change from a €20 note. None. The same goes for almost everything. That is why you need to be savvy. Head to the supermarket and stuff your backpack full of sandwiches, bottles of water, chocolate bars and that sort of thing. If you aren’t sure which part of a big resort you will be skiing in, buy local ski passes for that day. If you want to eat out in the evenings, find somewhere that allows corkage and maybe takes discounts for big groups of people.
Skiing isn’t cheap. That’s a fact. But it is more affordable than ever before and even more so if you are smart about the way you go about it.