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Money Saving Tips

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
I'm trying to convince a family to come along with my family skiing next spring break. Husband, wife, 14,13,9 year old boys. As you can see, cost is definitely an issue. None have every skied before. Looking at Copper or Winter Park. Does anyone have any tips on how to save money on lessons. Tips on ways to save in other areas are appreciated. How can I convince that skiing is really as fun as I say it is??
post #2 of 9
Villagenut, spring break is a hard time to save money. Copper does have some discounts if you can buy now
http://www.coppercolorado.com/winter/liftrent/lift_tickets/?campaignid=0405_cm_onthesnow_e_g_300x400_28sep04_ 108lt

If you can get them to commit, find your lodging soon. Most reasonable places will be booked by December, if not before. If you are wanting to all stay in the same condo to save money it is even more important to book early, 3+ bedrooms go fast.
as to "How can I convince that skiing is really as fun as I say it is??" hmm that is a tough one. Let me know what you come up with. Have many friends that will not come here skiing.
post #3 of 9
cant say for sure as i dont ski copper or winter park, but with breckenridge/keystone you can sometimes book reservations online for lodging and get free skis, lift tickets and lessons, especially if you book far in advance. sometimes the airline(most likely frontier) has that same offer, if you book everything thru them.
as far as getting them to enjoy it, i would ski with them the 2nd day after their 1st lesson and give them pointers all day. no matter how awful they were on day one, they should come and take their 2nd lesson with a lot more confidence and be able to show the other beginners up a little. everyone likes to be the best.
post #4 of 9
Try to get a condo or efficiency type unit so you can cook some meals instead of eating out.

Buy some of those Copper 4 packs for like $69 each if they're still avail.
post #5 of 9
We stayed (Family of 4) in Winter Park 2003, Breckenridge 2004.
Breck was higher.
While looking into skiing utah this year, I contacted a travel agent. She found reasonable deals for Snowbird/ Alta, but said that Winter Park will allways be the least Expensive. Winter Park has stay free 4 all deal.
Hope this helps. Also try a instant quote on moguls.com
post #6 of 9
Where do you live and when is spring break? Air fare is always a big cost consideration with families (I've got 4 kids). Can your group drive to the slopes? You might find some excellent deals and decent skiing in northern New England in March. Rent one big house for both families and divide costs. If set on the west, consider a second tier ski area like Wolf Creek, Loveland, Brian Head, or Bridger Bowl and stay in a nearby town instead of slopeside for lower lodging costs. If possible, get the newbies to go on a few local day ski trips before the big weeklong trip. They'll enjoy it more. Take the newbies to a preseason ski swap where they can buy old used skis and boots for the price of about two days rentals. This will also serve to commit them to the spring trip and encourage local ski days. (Don't quote me but, when on big trip use a key chain clip and share/rotate lift tickets among those who may only need a few hours of slope time each day.)
post #7 of 9
Economizing: share the condo. This makes meals affordable. esp. w/teens--lunch in the lodge for a family of 5 is a killer. We've even shipped food in advance, or checked a box of staples as luggage, when we thought we were going to be limited to on the mtn. groceries. Unless you're someplace with really great restaurants, where the expense is worth it, dining out just becomes costly calories--microwave frozen casserole in the condo may not be exquisite cuisine, but it's easy, nourishing, and CHEAP. By the way, kids love those "just add water" baking mixes for dessert and breakfast muffins. Get within walking or bus distance of slopes (a resort with a transit system like Whistler's makes many locations "convenient") and the condo also becomes a retreat for tired or discouraged beginners, with more to do than hang out in the dayroom. All our past multi-family vacations have seen a constant occupancy of the condo, this one for cocoa, that one for a nap, another quitting early or starting late. Don't go too small, make sure people have private, retreat space. Committing to 2nd hand gear in advance is a good idea if possible, pitch immediate resale value if they abandon the sport, with $ loss still being less than rental fees, plus time savings of not being in the rental que all morning.

Fun: Friends are so important to teens, plus there's the embaressment of being a beginner, so picking a resort that's bigger may actually be better, with "more to do" than just ski (a pool's great), esp. if skiing turns out to be a bust for one of them. An isolated resort like Big Sky probably's the wrong place to start someone, unless you're all keen on "quality family time". Prep them with videos, Warren Miller's old Learn to Ski ones are great, though dated (the principles remain the same) and available cheap at half.com. Take videos and board games. Also encourage some kind of pre-conditioning. If they aren't athletic already, learning to ski can really take a toll. Some beginners become discouraged from fatigue, not lack of skill. Finally, make sure they've got the clothing for the sport. Like fatigue, cold and wet sour as many beginners as falling down and fear.

Good Luck!
post #8 of 9
Go to www.vrbo.com to rent direct from owners in any of the previously discussed locations. Also, in Steamboat the 9 yo will ski free and I believe rent free too with a parent 5 day pass. Other things we do include: drive (from MI), rent a small place and have the kids bring sleeping bags for the floor (they love this part), and bring a crock pot!! It may not be luxury but it allows me to ski out west 3 times a winter!!
post #9 of 9
Actually at Steamboat kids under 12 ski free with each parent's 5 day pass, teens get discounted tickets & rental gear. Steamboat lodging is not real expensive, there is a lot of it.
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