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Comment on last minute flight accom bookings

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

Hi All

 

Hope you can give an Aussie some assistance?

 

Landing into LAX early morning 3rd January.  Going to visit the area with the best snow, early season conditions, Canada or US.  Hopefully all you good folk have gone back to work/school started and leave the slopes empty.

 

My guess is I will pay more for flights and maybe pick up some bargains for lodging?

 

I am really wanting to tick either Whistler, Aspen or Jackson Hole off the bucket list.  East of Seattle resorts have also got my attention.  Tahoe if it ever gets a good season.

 

Comments on the merits of the last minute (2 weeks before) booking for flights and lodging please?

 

For your reference I have skied Japan for the last two years, Utah resorts, Steamboat & Big White some years ago.

 

Thanks

post #2 of 18
The 3rd will be the last day of our Christmas Holiday and a very busy travel day. It will be very difficult to get a cheap last minute flight.
I would delay my arrival a few days.
post #3 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Willy10 View Post
 

Hi All

 

Hope you can give an Aussie some assistance?

 

Landing into LAX early morning 3rd January.  Going to visit the area with the best snow, early season conditions, Canada or US.  Hopefully all you good folk have gone back to work/school started and leave the slopes empty.

 

My guess is I will pay more for flights and maybe pick up some bargains for lodging?

 

I am really wanting to tick either Whistler, Aspen or Jackson Hole off the bucket list.  East of Seattle resorts have also got my attention.  Tahoe if it ever gets a good season.

 

Comments on the merits of the last minute (2 weeks before) booking for flights and lodging please?

 

For your reference I have skied Japan for the last two years, Utah resorts, Steamboat & Big White some years ago.

 

Thanks


What type of lodging?  Hotel or condo?  You are correct that the first week of Jan is generally not a busy time, meaning the week of Jan. 4.

 

If you decided on going to Aspen or JH, would you want to pay more and fly into a small airport and avoid renting a car?  Or fly to Denver or SLC and drive?

post #4 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post


If you decided on going to Aspen or JH, would you want to pay more and fly into a small airport and avoid renting a car?  Or fly to Denver or SLC and drive?

In my personal experience the difference of flying to Eagle vs Denver has been significant enough to rent a fleet of cars.
post #5 of 18

 

 

 

 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Willy10 View Post
 

 

My guess is I will pay more for flights and maybe pick up some bargains for lodging?

 

I am really wanting to tick either Whistler, Aspen or Jackson Hole off the bucket list.  East of Seattle resorts have also got my attention.  Tahoe if it ever gets a good season.

 

 

 

How long is your holiday?  Are you planning on hitting multiple resorts?

 

Either way, I'd pickup at Mountain Collective Pass,  All three are on the MCP and it covers a wide geographical area, so somebody should be good.

 

There are usually about five directs daily, LAX to ASE, 3 or more United and 2 American.   I just think you'd be better off Tuesday or Wednesday of the next week.

 

Lodging won't be a problem at all, at any of the resorts, at that time. 

 

 

 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by Coach13 View Post


In my personal experience the difference of flying to Eagle vs Denver has been significant enough to rent a fleet of cars.

 

Just depends on when and where your coming from.   I've flown direct ORD into EGE for the same as DEN. 

post #6 of 18
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the replies

 

Very short trip, some would saw crazy traveling so far to ski for 8 days skiing!  I'm keen!  Air to fare to LAX was the same as Japan when I booked & wanted to do a different type of resort after going to japan for the last two years.  

 

Arrive Jan 3, depart on Jan 12th so I get 8 days skiing so delaying the trip as suggested can't happen.

 

I can get $470 return to YVR plus bus to Whistler, I can get $250 return to Denver plus hire car or shuttle works out roughly the same as Vancouver option.  ASE & Eagle are $500 one way at present so not really an option.

 

Salt Lake City would be the easy answer for flights, lodging and good snow and I would be able to ski all day on my departure day and still make my 23.00 flight back home to Australia (9 ski days instead of 8).  Done those resorts and are keen to try somewhere else.  It is my fall back position.

 

So I'm hearing lodging will be no problem at most places, Aspen being the exception for reasonably priced accommodation, but my flight choices and cost will be poor compared to booking now.

 

Question if you had to book early and it was Whistler of Aspen for the first week in January which would you choose?

 

I like long runs, and love exploring the trees/glades although only an upper intermediate who still struggles a bit in really deep powder.

 

Really appreciate the effort people are going to reply and help me out with suggestions etc.

post #7 of 18
Thread Starter 

Sorry forgot to add.  My mate and I would prefer a condo with a kitchen but a hotel room with a small kitchenette would be fine.  Studio, one bedroom with a sleeper sofa is what we are after.  I don't mind sleeping on the sleeper sofa.  It's usually in front of the TV so easy to watch something and fall asleep and then flick on the news in the morning while still in bed.

post #8 of 18

I would recommend Aspen with the rental car option, which would probably not be any more than a shuttle for two people.

 

Main reason for Aspen over Whistler is probability of better weather (plus I am partial to Aspen).

 

I don't know of any hotels in Aspen or Snowmass that would have kitchenettes. Probably the best bet would be VRBO for a condo. Accommodations down valley are less expensive if you have a car and don't mind driving. If you stayed in Glenwood Springs (40 miles from Aspen), you could also try Vail and Beaver Creek (about 60 miles).

post #9 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Miles View Post
 

I would recommend Aspen with the rental car option, which would probably not be any more than a shuttle for two people.

 

Main reason for Aspen over Whistler is probability of better weather (plus I am partial to Aspen).

 

I don't know of any hotels in Aspen or Snowmass that would have kitchenettes. Probably the best bet would be VRBO for a condo. Accommodations down valley are less expensive if you have a car and don't mind driving. If you stayed in Glenwood Springs (40 miles from Aspen), you could also try Vail and Beaver Creek (about 60 miles).


I would add Carbondale to the list for Aspen lodging with a car.  A town that is a bit closer to Aspen than Glenwood Springs.  A couple of motels that are reasonable.  No kitchenette, but includes breakfast.  Within 30 min of the free parking lots for the free buses that go to all three of the big mountains.

 

Might be able to get a deal through Aspen/Snowmass if waited until mid-Dec to book.  Some packages include discounted lift tickets.

post #10 of 18
Thread Starter 

Great thanks

 

Yes I fancy my chances of getting a half decent airfare LAX -DEN return (mid Dec) and then getting a car.  What booking sites allow you to reserve a car without having to pay now and are flexible to cancelled should I go elsewhere?

 

Ticking Vail of the bucket list would be cool.  Cooper is heavily marketed to Australian's so could have a look there also.  Although the 3 main hills at Aspen would keep us entertained I'm sure.

post #11 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Willy10 View Post
 

Great thanks

 

Yes I fancy my chances of getting a half decent airfare LAX -DEN return (mid Dec) and then getting a car.  What booking sites allow you to reserve a car without having to pay now and are flexible to cancelled should I go elsewhere?

 

Any of the big online sites or the rental company sites thenselves.

 

Ticking Vail of the bucket list would be cool.  Cooper is heavily marketed to Australian's so could have a look there also.  Although the 3 main hills at Aspen would keep us entertained I'm sure.

 

Think you mean Copper. Cooper is a small local area near Leadville. Copper is a fair haul from Aspen, over Vail Pass.

post #12 of 18

Since you are thinking about Denver at this point, I added a tag for Denver Travel (under Topics Discussed).  Click on the link to get to a list of related threads.

 

One of the threads is about renting a car in Denver this past winter.

 

http://www.epicski.com/t/130467/denver-rental-car-rates

 

Depending on when you arrive or depart Denver, quite possible to stay overnight either in Denver or somewhere between Denver and the Aspen area if you want to ski at another area.  I did a trip to Aspen in March from Denver that started early in the morning so that my ski buddy and I could ski at A-Basin before continuing on to Carbondale.

post #13 of 18
Thread Starter 
Man I can't spell using these small handheld devices, copper not cooper yes up the road from Vail.

Agree that Aspen will probably have more stable weather than Whistler, but some would say the unstable PNW may bring more snow. Who knows!

Two options easy to organise late seem to be as per above fly to Denver and rent a car, second fly to Seattle and get a car to drive East or North.

Border crossing up the road from Seattle on Sunday the 3Jan late afternoon - everyone heading the other way back into US?
post #14 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Willy10 View Post
 

What booking sites allow you to reserve a car without having to pay now and are flexible to cancelled should I go elsewhere?

 

I believe most of them do... the general travel sites like Expedia and Travelocity, as well the rental companies themselves. When I've rented they've always been more like hotels, with a 24 or 48 hour cancellation policy at no cost. You should be able to see the policy on the sites.

post #15 of 18
Quote:
Agree that Aspen will probably have more stable weather than Whistler, but some would say the unstable PNW may bring more snow. Who knows!

Yes in that time frame Whistler will have a considerably deeper snowpack most seasons. Due to relatively low skier density Aspen skis fairly well on a 1+ meter base that might be marginal other places, but in general Aspen is better in February/March than early January.  While I would choose Whistler over Aspen in that time frame, you should be prepared for flat light and not great visibility midwinter at Whistler.

 

The OP mentioned Jackson in his first post; his time frame is usually good there.  He should consider plane tickets to SLC, rent a car which he should there anyway, and plan to drive the 5 hours to Jackson.  Lodging in both Jackson and SLC will be easy and reasonably priced last minute.  With the Mountain Collective you get Jackson and Utah's premier areas Alta and Snowbird.  And you get to decide at the very last minute based on snow and weather how to allocate the 8 days between Utah and Jackson. 

post #16 of 18
Thread Starter 

Thanks team

 

Rental car already booked in SLC for back up plan.  Travel alerts in place for flights going everywhere.  Will look to organise other rental cars at different airports.  Wait for next season.

 

Jackson Hole very much on the radar.  Midday arrival at SLC and 5 hours up the road, sorted if required.

 

Loved skiing in amongst the massive trees you have in North America with the long runs on my previous trips to Steamboat, Utah and Big White.  

 

Loved Japan, so much snow last January in Nozawa but just wanted a change.  Whistler, Aspen and Jackson seem to fit my pre-requisite of long runs, see it ski it landscape and intermediate glade options.

post #17 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Willy10 View Post
 

Thanks team

 

Rental car already booked in SLC for back up plan.  Travel alerts in place for flights going everywhere.  Will look to organise other rental cars at different airports.  Wait for next season.

 

Jackson Hole very much on the radar.  Midday arrival at SLC and 5 hours up the road, sorted if required.

 

Loved skiing in amongst the massive trees you have in North America with the long runs on my previous trips to Steamboat, Utah and Big White.  

 

Loved Japan, so much snow last January in Nozawa but just wanted a change.  Whistler, Aspen and Jackson seem to fit my pre-requisite of long runs, see it ski it landscape and intermediate glade options.


Now that the MCP includes Thredbo, does that make it of more interest to you?  Also means that Thredbo premium pass holders get a 50% discount on lift tickets at North American MCP destinations, which include your targets.

 

Snowmass certainly fits your interests.  If you head to JH, definitely worth spending a day or two at Grand Targhee.  Only an hour in good driving weather.

post #18 of 18
Thread Starter 

Bump

 

Decision made yesterday and BC Canada is the winner.  Very impressive early season falls.

LAX-SEA return with a full size SUV booked.  Price on the air ticket to SEA ended up being about $100 more expensive than if I had booked mid year.  Flying into Vancouver although was ridiculous, didn't want to sell a body part to save a few hours driving time.  The ticket price on this route saw a massive increase in price.

 

Whistler and Sun Peaks combination.  Let the snow continue to fall and everyone enjoy the winter sports!

 

Murphy's law, the punters heading to Jackson and Aspen will now get dumped on big time after my decision has been confirmed, with bookings, to give those resorts a miss!

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