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How much does it cost to start a 3.5 year old skiing?

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
I am doing some end of the year filing and I came across Jane’s ski folder - here’s what is in there. (Not counting the winter clothing Jane already had as of 9/2004).

CS&G 2005
Dynastar Team Speed 08
Salomon Performa T1
Tyrolia SL45
$66.28

Jacket/Ski Pants - sniagrab $69.00
Mittens - $12
Socks - $8
Neckwarmer - $3


CS&G 2004
Helmet $49.99
Junior Trade-In Ski $44.99
Alpine Trade-In Boot $34.99
Mounting $10.00
Total $139.97

Lessons $100.00

Running Total: $398.25

When we started this, we opted into the Colorado Ski & Golf ‘Program’, which (as far as I can tell) allows you to renew each year for a fee. There were no ‘trade in’ skis there in her size, so they offered me to set her up in all new gear at a discounted price this year.
post #2 of 22
$398.25. Wow, enjoy it while you can. If it really takes hold of her you'll have race expenses that make new cars look cheap.
post #3 of 22
We are a bit lucky in that regard. Since we live near a summer ski resort we often can buy the kids last summers demo skis (kids race skis) for about $100 - 200 with bindings. Boots cost about $100 (the kids are 5 and 11). The gear is top quality and in great shape. We tend to buy clothing on sale or from low price vendors. The season pass is free for the 5 year old and $149 for the 11 year old. My wife has constant access to corporate passes due to her "free" work for the Corporate Marketing department.

To really understand how cheap it is compare your costs amortized over the life of the items then find the daily or hourly cost of skiing. Compare to the daily or hourly cost of other all day, family fun like dizzyland or the like.

Mark
post #4 of 22
We'll spend $398 this weekend on hotels, gas, etc. for my daughters USSA race. Enjoy it while it lasts and avoid racing!!!
post #5 of 22
Have spent ...... I don't even want to post the $$$ to keep an advancing fifteen year old at a ski school.

Add in the summer trip for Whistler race camp and the late fall trip to Austria and the "matched" race and training skis.

You are breeding the very monsters that will consume you!

Run while you can!
post #6 of 22
Thread Starter 

06/07 Update @ 5

Wow, it's been an entire year. Jane is 5 now.

Janesmom is skiing today and I find myself home now with 2 kids. How did THAT happen?

We spent another $50 at CS&G this year to upgrade Jane's boots to the next version of Salomon kids boots. New too, and that included mounting/testing the bindings.

If you factor in the miscellaneous gloves / hat / underwear - it's got to be at least another $125 this year.

Same jacket/pants/helmet/skis - The Columbia jacket/pants from SNIAGRAB has proven that the higher end kids stuff is worth a little extra up front. I'll be surprised if the helmet is still the right size by January.

$20 to renew her "pass" leaves us at $543.25 for the first 3 seasons.

We skied about 16 times last year, 12 the year before and maybe 10 the first year. 38 days makes it somewhere around $15 bucks a day.

Plus food, my season passes, gas, auto = I dunno, this seems to work out pretty well compared to other things but still its a great option because I am having fun at the same time.

Oh yeah, no Barbies allowed on ski days (priceless).

Quote:
Originally Posted by janesdad View Post
I am doing some end of the year filing and I came across Jane’s ski folder - here’s what is in there. (Not counting the winter clothing Jane already had as of 9/2004).

CS&G 2005
Dynastar Team Speed 08
Salomon Performa T1
Tyrolia SL45
$66.28

Jacket/Ski Pants - sniagrab $69.00
Mittens - $12
Socks - $8
Neckwarmer - $3


CS&G 2004
Helmet $49.99
Junior Trade-In Ski $44.99
Alpine Trade-In Boot $34.99
Mounting $10.00
Total $139.97

Lessons $100.00

Running Total: $398.25

When we started this, we opted into the Colorado Ski & Golf ‘Program’, which (as far as I can tell) allows you to renew each year for a fee. There were no ‘trade in’ skis there in her size, so they offered me to set her up in all new gear at a discounted price this year.
post #7 of 22
I remember that seasonal rental for skis was $80 at first, gradually climbed to $125. Paid zip for a season pass until she was seven years old, since it was a height thing and she was short. Bought a helmet or two along the way. Sold the first helmet for $35, so got some of that back. (Still have the second one.) So, maybe just under $600 for the first four years, added together. But, she got us back with two years of FIS racing before college kicked in. THAT I never want to add up.
post #8 of 22
As it was said. Enjoy it while you can. The cost only go up from here. Six years of race team, now my son's in his second year of college now, he skied twice last year.

I memories your gaining are "priceless" . Grab hold of all the photo's you can, time goes by much faster then you think.
post #9 of 22
At 3.5, Jane should be hiking for turns and paying her own way. She has freeloaded long enough.
post #10 of 22
I don't count gloves, hats and coats, etc. We would be buying that stuff anyway for just going out in the snow, sledding, etc.
post #11 of 22
Thread Starter 

07/08 Update - The Basics take us over $1K Total

Quote:
Originally Posted by janesdad View Post
Wow, it's been an entire year. Jane is 5 now.

We spent another $50 at CS&G this year to upgrade Jane's boots to the next version of Salomon kids boots. New too, and that included mounting/testing the bindings.

If you factor in the miscellaneous gloves / hat / underwear - it's got to be at least another $125 this year.

Same jacket/pants/helmet/skis - The Columbia jacket/pants from SNIAGRAB has proven that the higher end kids stuff is worth a little extra up front. I'll be surprised if the helmet is still the right size by January.

$20 to renew her "pass" leaves us at $543.25 for the first 3 seasons.

We skied about 16 times last year, 12 the year before and maybe 10 the first year. 38 days makes it somewhere around $15 bucks a day.

Plus food, my season passes, gas, auto = I dunno, this seems to work out pretty well compared to other things but still its a great option because I am having fun at the same time.

Oh yeah, no Barbies allowed on ski days (priceless).
2007/2008 Update: Jane is 6 years old and I have to admit that I am losing track of the money. We bought more stuff for this year at the end of last year and are trying to make the best of it. Let's see, what I know so far;

1. Colorado Pass - $199 (Breck/Keystone/ABasin +10d Vail/BC)
2. New Jacket/Pants - $120 (bought better quality a little larger to get 2 seasons and hoping for one more for her new little sister).
3. New Helmet - $40 (End of season last year)
4. Co Ski and Golf - $65 New Ski/Binding (Jr Upgrade Program)

Boots will be good again this year. $425 so far this year plus $545 from previous years - brings us up to a new grand total of $970. Let's call it an even $1,000.
post #12 of 22
Remember that hand me downs, trading with friends, buying clothes that will fit for more than 1 season will lower your cost. I though that my wife was crazy to spend $130 for an Obermeyr one piece suit for my older daughter years ago -- after the older one got 2 seasons of wear, the younger daughter got 3 seasons of wear, and we were able to pass it on to a friend with younger kids, I had to congradulate her on her thriftiness.
post #13 of 22
Kids under 5 ski most places for free in Colorado. Season rentals are $89.00 You have to feed your kids and supply them with winter clothes no matter if they are skiers or not.
post #14 of 22
Become an instructor. You will get many good deal which will reduce your costs, and you will have access to your kids' instructors. Anytime my kids did anything at all out of line a the ski area, I heard about it immediately. It reminded me of the parents' network in the neighborhood where I grew up.
post #15 of 22
$100 for lessons? That sounds real light. A 3.5 year may need many days just playing on skis before she's even ready to make runs on the tiniest of learning slopes. Of course all kids are different so it may vary.

If you have snow in the yard, you can always do some playing on skis at home.

For lessons, 1/2 day sessions in a kids-program like what used to be called "Ski-Wee" would be about right. Half a day at a time is plenty for a 3.5 year old. They get tired quick. As I said, it may take several sessions to even get her to make one run. Then, she should have a lesson either ever time or ever other time for the first season. Estimate a few hundred bucks for lessons to get her started.
post #16 of 22
I don't track skiing expenses for the kids. For us it's a 3 generation family activity (Myself, my kids, my Dad, Sister and brother in law, nephew). I can't put a price on having Grandpa ski with the kids and enjoy them chatting on the lift, etc.
This year I need to get my daughter a new helmet and boots, and the little guy needs skis and boots after renting last season. I will reasonably spend what it takes to outfit them without complaint as the enjoyment we see in many months of skiing make it equal to very little on a per use basis. I buy seasonal leftovers or lightly used gear as at ages 4 and 7 it does not really matter all that much. I'm getting high quality gear with little use for 1/3 the cost of new. Put your kids in Hockey or Lacrosse and see what that costs!!! Heck today we went to the movies- 1 adult, 2 kids with admission and snacks it was $31.50 for a matinee show that was mediocre!
post #17 of 22
My poor daughter learned to ski with me. One lesson about turning and for the next three years it was just me. So, maybe $30 on lessons during her first four seasons, zilch on lift tickets for tots at the time (she was short), and about $70 a year for seasonal rentals. She skied 12 days her first season, 20-odd days her second, and probably 30-40 days a year afterwards until she joined a ski team when she was 11. She had some instruction the three times we hit Club Med in Colorado.

Naturally, she blames all of her technique flaws on me, but thankfully the racing erased most of them.
post #18 of 22
Thread Starter 

hard costs are more like $2K so far...

Quote:
Originally Posted by learn2turn View Post
...$100 for lessons? That sounds real light... Estimate a few hundred bucks for lessons to get her started...
Yeah, I missed that too. Call it $200/year so far - these are the things I have lost track of.
post #19 of 22
Thread Starter 

What's the magic number?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SJB View Post
I don't track skiing expenses for the kids.
Normally, I don't keep that close an eye on it either, but it may help someone trying to prepare...I would put a number out there that to keep your kid skiing every year here in Colorado, the budget number should be north of $1500/year for parents new to this.
post #20 of 22
My daughter is going to be 5 next month. This will be her 3rd full year skiing. She has never had a lesson...I and my friends taught her. She skied about 20 days last year and around 15 the year before that. She can ski almost all blues and some easy blacks. Her best friends just turned 5 and they skied ~70 days last year. They are riding the poma at Copper and sking Patrol Chute regularly...again no lessons just skiing with Mom & Dad everyday....all day.
post #21 of 22
Some places will do a ski exchange in which you pay a $200 deposit fee for the skis and then trade the skis in every year and pay approximately $50 annual rate. Helmet is going to run you $50. I look at snow pants and jackets as a necessity for my daughter outside of skiing and refuse to include that into my thought process Also, my daughter zoomed in on the older kids and felt the need to try and accomplish what a ten year old was doing but I believe in lessons to acclimate the child and then their love (I am fortunate that my daughter took to it) for skiing will dictate where they go from there. Also, I would rent there skis to start to see if they even like it. Once they are sized up most ski shops keep that information and you do not have to go through the fitting process everytime. Normally kids rentals are around $10.
post #22 of 22
How much will it cost? More than you can imagine. But..... it's the best family investment you will ever make. Our girls are 11 and 13, my son is 9. They bring friends from time to time but still want to ski with the family every weekend.
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