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Buying vs renting for the very young - Page 2

post #31 of 36
^ agreed. Was almost going to go Jon Taffer on this thread.
post #32 of 36

For beginners, age 3 and 5, definitely rent.  Either multi day (at the mountain where you are skiing) or seasonal.  Daily is a pain if you are skiing multiple days (either in succession or across a season).


There is no reason to own at this point and many good reasons not to, the first being that if you are asking this question on an internet chat board, even one with such esteemed "advisors" as this community, the odds are almost nil that you'll roll into a swap without the kids in tow and find boots that fit + skis that fit + skis that are level appropriate. Although we live in an ownership culture, sometimes leasing is more efficient and cost effective. 


Rental boots are fine for beginners.  If you were to buy boots for the kids brand new, you'd probably just be getting a shinny pair of the same boots that populate the kids' rental fleet.


Once the kids can really ski, then you buy.  I am a strong believer in that.  Even with young kids, the difference between using quality equipment and base-level rental stock is noticeable.  But they need to be able to hold an edge, link turns, address real terrain etc. . . before any of this makes a difference.


For now, I agree with the post above that quality mitts (something like Hestras v. box store junk), and warm, well fit soft goods, probably represent the best investment you can make for establishing the basis for a life-long interest in the sport.


Have fun this winter and think snow.

post #33 of 36

Here is what we did for our two kids.  BUY!  We went from 1 to 8 times per year depending on the season


Go to the ski shows and they usually have a swap area which is usually clearance stuff from ski shops (old new stock).  Don't buy used unless you really know what you are doing.


Trade out the old stuff (ie too small) and hand down the stuff from the older one to the younger one as required.


Some shops have a kids buy back program (buy from them and keep upgrading, sort of a one year rental).


I'd rather have my kid in a boot slightly bigger with an extra pair of thick socks (to hopefully get 2 years out of them) than a loose ill fitting rental piece of c@#p boot as I know what to expect.  I also know that the bindings are safe as they've been set by a trusted shop (I do my own, but I don't recommend it for others).  Helmets are clean and fit correctly instead of the universal rental fit along with knowing that they are not damaged by a previous user.


Once you start buying the cost start to go down as you do not always replace everything at the same time.  Skis and bindings every 2 or 3 years, boots every 1 or 2, helmets every 3 or 4 at this age.


Add to that the time saved on the hill and getting on and off the hill makes it enjoyable for all to make you want to go more often.


Safety, comfort and reasonable cost, makes for an enjoyable outing and develops a long lasting love for the sport.


Our first year on the oldest we spent about $200.00 (todays dollars and pricing) about $30.00 (helmet) on the second one, skis and boots got handed down as the older one was onto his 3 set of boots and second set of skis.


The only draw back during this young period you will occasionally have extra odd sized equipment laying around that fits neither one.  What for it will , once they hit about 10 it starts to get better.

post #34 of 36

The seasonal kids rental skis at my local shop are absolute crap and the salespeople couldn't fit a pair of ski boots if their lives depended on it. We've rented skis and the bindings broke on vacation. My kids are  2 years apart, perfect for hand me downs. I buy a pair of inexpensive skis ($100 at Level Nine) which last 2 years minimum. I buy them each a pair of Roces adjustable ski boots. They have 4 settings so they can last a few years.




It prices out comparably to seasonal rentals once the multiple year use is taken into account.

post #35 of 36
Seasonal rentals are absolutely the way to go. Many larger (quality) ski shops will offer very attractive programs...where they professionally fit the kids. If the kids grow out of a boot size mid year, they can usually swap out to a bigger boot @ n/c. The equipment you get and return each year is usually no more than a year or two old and at the end of the program ( when the kids have grown out of the largest sizes) you often get a full credit. We put both our kids through it that way starting out 4or 5 times a year. They both left the programs around age 12. My 16 year old( who is now a varsity high school racer) got out 100+ days last year! and my 12 yr old daughter who now races USSA was over 90 days.

I so wish we had similar programs when I was a kid. It would have cost my parents so much less!

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post #36 of 36

We have a ski shop nearby that offers a youth program.  Purchases are given 100% credit towards the trade-in (boots and skis).   It ends at 150cm and size 25.0 boot and only costs $35 for boot/binding adjustment.

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