Those who live, breathe, and think snow get so fired up sometimes they just have to share that enthusiasm. I recently received an e-mail from Sydnee Fox who does public relations for all 40 of the Christy Sports Stores in Utah and Colorado. She was full of good ideas for families no matter where you do your skiing. These tips and ideas just have to be shared.
The first is a big one, if you are planning your trip. Sydnee says, "Avoid the peak holiday periods. Lodging prices around Christmas, New Year's Eve, and Presidents' Day are often double what they would be for the rest of the season."
Airfare differences can be even more dramatic, according to Sydnee. She estimates that a Sunday to Sunday round trip from Chicago to Denver averages $250 but during the holiday week it can jump to $1,000. Book early, too. "Most winter fares to Denver or Salt Lake City are historically at their low point until the end of October, at which time they will gradually start increasing."
Check the baggage rate, too. Make sure you ask how much it will cost you per bag, If you think you're getting a good deal on a ticket. "You might find a cheaper airfare on a particular airline, but once you add in the various fees, it may not be the cheapest option.
"If you are bringing your skis from home, be aware of the oversize/overweight fee policies with many of the airlines," she adds.
Renting high-end equipment at your destination's local ski shop might be a better option. Some stores, like Christy Sports, offer kids a free rental with an adult rental purchase. "This saves the family a lot of money and you don't have to bring equipment on the airplane and pay for those baggage fees. You can just rent it and use it and take it back."
There is also a service available in Colorado and Utah called Door 2 Door Skis, where they will have your equipment ready and delivered to any location. If it breaks, Christy Sports will fix it, as part of a partnership. Door 2 Door Skis can be reached at (866) 323-7547.
Everyone wants a deal on lift tickets. Check your favorite resort for discounted lift tickets that may be available until mid-November. Many grocery stores sell discounted tickets. Also, the majority of Christy Sports stores have a kiosk where you can purchase discounted lift tickets for many of the Colorado and Utah resorts; however, not all resorts have discounted lift tickets available.
Sydnee, who lives in Salt Lake City and skis Utah, says to call the lodging properties directly. "Many offer a direct booking discount and generally know the property better than the central reservation systems. You might get a deal, and this person will also do a better job of matching you with the right kind of unit for your personal needs.
"Don't overlook older properties. They may not have elevators, hardwood floors, Jacuzzis, and granite countertops, but they can be comfortable, very close to the lifts, and much more affordable."
Sydnee's tips and great ideas included feeding the family. "When dining out, call the restaurant and ask if they have a bar menu. The portions are hardly smaller, yet much cheaper. It's a very popular option amongst locals, and the seating area usually offers a great ambience."