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Killington Lifetime Passholders are dismissed - Page 2

post #31 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkXS View Post

 

 

PSIA would probably hire lawyers to protect its too-cozy relationship with resort operators if Ski Instructors tried to unionize.

 

 ***********************************************************************************************************************************************

 

This, in an economy where the whole concept of a resort vacation, second homes, expensive sports like skiing are purely discretionary and being cut back or replaced with cheaper alternatives. 

 

They're frakkin' nuts to take away these passes. The passholders will keep skiing. Just not at Killington or other Powdr-owned resorts, ever. And they'll take their families and friends to Powdr's competitors, and teach their children to avoid Killington and Powdr's other properties.

 

On point one above.....Isn't Copper's  (in your back yard) Ski School Unionized?  I believe so and from what I hear it hasn't done much to help the instructors.  It's gotten worse from what I hear.

 

MANY MANY MANY of those passholders are out of state vacation home owners and not locals. The folks I know that owned them would be in their mid 70's now and the kids approaching 50, and from money. The vast majority that I know that bought them in the Mount Snow area (when K-mart and Snow were one in the same) were people from New York (Long Island mostly) and NJ. It was a heck of a deal some 30 years ago now.  I remember there were different price structures from $ 3500 - $ 7000, and you got the pass for the investment cash in lieu of stock.

 

It's pretty likely that those remaining pass holders aren't going to take their buisiness to competing areas as all the areas now charge big money to get on the hill.  So the option is own a home and bite the bullet and buy a pass, own a home and ski elsewhere, sell the home (and good luck with option 3 right now) , quit skiing.  Pretty much left with option 1 no?

 

I agree Mark....nightmare of a PR deal. 

post #32 of 56


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusky View Post

I find it hard to believe, as a season passholder, that the passholders are spending the most money.  Most of us on this board (the regulars anyway) are proud passholders and just love talking about how LITTLE we spend per day skiing.  Sure, we may spend the MOST over the course of an entire season on skiing as a sport....maybe...by the time you add in airfare to other areas and lodging and equipment, but how much are we dropping at our local hill per day?  We make a point of saying NOT MUCH. 

 

In the report I posted on the Montana ski areas, they reported that residents (passholders, I would assume primarily, but it wasn't divided up that way, so it would have included people buying lift tickets and renting) were spending only about $141 per "trip" vs. $1273 per "trip" for non-residents, which you know were not passholders.  Now that of course, included airfare.  But if I go to page 15 of that report, I find that it's not all due to airfare, the tourists are spending more on just about everything:

expenses.jpg

If we assume there is a high correlation between passholders/residents and nonpassholders/nonresidents, I think it sort of blows a big hole in your idea that passholders are that profitable.

 

I just did a quick calculation of how much I personally will drop in the SKI AREA'S pocket next year, given my seasonal locker, the lift ticket and lunch.  Came to just around $1020 in TOTAL FOR THE WHOLE SEASON.  Those numbers above are for just a guy's 3 or 4 day trip. 


That chart doesn't prove much.  The Montana ski business is way different form Vermont, and in Vermont "non resident" means a guy from NY who might or might not have a season pass, and might ski anywhere from 1 to 20 days.  In Montana, a non-resident spends at least a week there.  Kmart would be way happy to get $1020 for the season from every day skier. On a daily basis, ticket buyers spend more, but over he course of a season, passholders are the big spenders.  They're the ones renting lockers, putting their kids in race programs, and most of all, buying real estate. 

Powdr has generally treated everyone poorly.  They kicked PSIA to the curb, they shortened the season, they stopped running the real estate gondola, they raised prices on season passes and especially on junior programs, they treated the employees poorly.  Some of those decisions were reversed, but not the decision to revoke lifetime passes.  It wouldn't have cost much to honor those passes, and they certainly lost at least some cash business by revoking them.  At least some of those passholders must have been real estate buyers, which is only only kind of skier you really want at your mountain.

The rumor around Vermont was that Powdr wanted to reduce the traffic on the mountain, get rid of the brown bag crowd, and create a big buck Vail style resort.  That doesn't seem to be working for Stowe, and it is even less feasible in Rutland.  Until real estate comes back, it will never happen.

 

BK

post #33 of 56

If the "Vailification" of the Vermont (and New Hampshire, and Maine) resorts is truly a terrible business decision we shall soon see.  Some other astute folks could round up some VC funds and re-open some of the dozens and dozens of mothballed ski resorts that have gone down the tubes trying to do it the old school mom and pop way by focusing on t keeping the locals happy.  FWIW, I totally prefer those rustic places even if they have slow chairs because they aren't as crowded.  But, if they are selling fewer lift tickets and passes per skiable acre even at far lower prices than the big guns then you can see why they go belly up.

post #34 of 56

Guaranteed,

This won't even be a blip on the radar when it comes to ticket sales. The majority of people coming to a hill like that don't know, and don't care about the plight of the poor lifetime pass holder (that wasn't even the original buyer).

 

On Mt Hood all the big ski clubs took their business to another side of the mountain this year. I didn't notice any less or more at any of the resorts. Most people ski where they want to. Politics of the hill mean nothing to them.

 

post #35 of 56

Geez, who's Lifetime are we talking about, old man winter? When i am asked if my company offers a lifetime warranty, i explain that yes we do. If the product should fail during the customer's lifetime, my partner comes out with a smith & wesson and shoots the customer. 1243 times $1149 equals one million four hundred twenty eight thousand dollars. Per year. Bad PR maybe, I really don't care about "the plight of the poor lifetime pass holder" either. $hit happens.

post #36 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by ecimmortal View Post

Guaranteed,

This won't even be a blip on the radar when it comes to ticket sales. The majority of people coming to a hill like that don't know, and don't care about the plight of the poor lifetime pass holder (that wasn't even the original buyer).

 

On Mt Hood all the big ski clubs took their business to another side of the mountain this year. I didn't notice any less or more at any of the resorts. Most people ski where they want to. Politics of the hill mean nothing to them.

 

The ski business never fails or succeeds on ticket sales.  The ski business is much more about real estate than about skiing. 

I don't know why you think that a passholder (that wasn't even the original buyer) has an inferior claim than anyone else. I wasn't even the original buyer of my house, but that doesn't mean I want to let someone revoke the deed.  

All this would have been avoided if the passholders had been organized enough BEFORE the sale to get a judge to delay the closing.  Powdr would have caved in about 5 mintes.

 

BK
 

post #37 of 56

This is all the more reason to ski at Magic if you're in that area.  I can't stand Killington, and I live in New York City.  I wonder how any New Yorker goes there.  Part of the reason I leave the city on weekends is to get away from crowds, lines, etc.  The main reason is obviously skiing, but relaxation is another part.  Killington on a weekend is like being in NYC at rush hour.  No thanks.

post #38 of 56

The guy who took over Whitefish Mountain looked ahead and said that at SOME POINT you have to get the business back to making money on the skiing.  As it turns out, in a bad real estate market, he was right and they've cut their debt in half.  You can't keep selling real estate, at some point you're just out of ground to sell, condos to build, etc.  If you can't make money on ski operations, then you've run out of runway and the plane's gonna crash. 
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bode Klammer View Post



The ski business never fails or succeeds on ticket sales.  The ski business is much more about real estate than about skiing. 

I don't know why you think that a passholder (that wasn't even the original buyer) has an inferior claim than anyone else. I wasn't even the original buyer of my house, but that doesn't mean I want to let someone revoke the deed.  

All this would have been avoided if the passholders had been organized enough BEFORE the sale to get a judge to delay the closing.  Powdr would have caved in about 5 mintes.

 

BK
 

post #39 of 56

Maybe you should prove your point by hunting up the hard stats for Vermont. 
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bode Klammer View Post


 


That chart doesn't prove much.  The Montana ski business is way different form Vermont, and in Vermont "non resident" means a guy from NY who might or might not have a season pass, and might ski anywhere from 1 to 20 days.  In Montana, a non-resident spends at least a week there.

post #40 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusky View Post

Maybe you should prove your point by hunting up the hard stats for Vermont. 
 


Good idea.  Wait right here while I get that for you.

 

BK

post #41 of 56

Found a sentence in a generic report here about loyalty programs for ski areas that says that "While season-pass holders probably generate the lowest profit margins, they are certainly the “most frequent” of a ski area’s customers. Their frequent presence may provide opportunities for incremental spending linked to food, beverage and merchandise."  The point of the report is discussing ways to do this, but it bolsters my point that passholders don't tend to spend a lot of this group is trying to figure out how to get them to spend more.  And it's not focusing on Montana ski areas, it's ski areas in general.

 

post #42 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmy View Post

 1243 times $1149 equals one million four hundred twenty eight thousand dollars. Per year. Bad PR maybe, I really don't care about "the plight of the poor lifetime pass holder" either. $hit happens.


That's flawed RIAA/MPAA-think. As in "every downloaded and shared song is stealing from the artist, killing a kitten, and taking away a $15 CD/$25 DVD/$39 Blu-Ray sale."

 

Umm, NO. You can't assume that every lifetime passholder you're dissing will automatically choose to purchase an $1149 pass. In fact you'd be nuts to think that would be the case.

 

Whereas it is a safe assumption that at least some of those passholders, if they hadn't been screwed, would continue to introduce at least one new-to-Killington revenue-generating skier to the mountain. I'd take a SWAG at 250 new revenue-butts-in-chairlifts skiers per year for the remaining active lives of the passholders.

 

Just like if I really like a lot of songs from an artist I've "sampled", I may well (and have) bought her CD or downloaded for pay the whole album from the Amazon MP3 store on my Android phone. Thus preventing kittens from being killed rather than causing their horrible deaths. If I got into "Torchwood" one October in London and managed to "Find" the episodes I missed from not living in the UK and not having BBC America here, I might just (and did) buy the series DVD box sets.

 

Plus the negative multiplier effect - for every disgruntled customer (or former or potential customer turned off by a company), statistics (you look them up, they vary) range from 12-20 people that disgruntlee tells to avoid said company.

 

As "Cha-O-Lee The Foreigner" I had a line that is appropriate: "STOOPID IDEA. STOOPID IDEA!"

 

Never mind your Mr. Smith and Mr Wesson - Somebody should have gone "Bonk Bonk on the head" with the Croquet Mallet of Destiny to the POWDR managers who cooked this up. 

 

I do hear that Tony Hayward may want them to join his management team.

post #43 of 56



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by crgildart View Post

If the "Vailification" of the Vermont............................ resorts is truly a terrible business decision we shall soon see.  Some other astute folks could round up some VC funds and re-open some of the dozens and dozens of mothballed ski resorts that have gone down the tubes ..................................


You have obviously never dealt with Act 250. There is a good chance the permit process alone would cost 3 - 4 times what it would take to revitalize most of those areas.
 


Edited by Uncle Louie - 7/10/10 at 12:34am
post #44 of 56

 It's good to hear that the bashing of Powdr Corp. isn't quite as universal as it's been- they do just fine with Park City. The owners, John and Kristi Cummings, are locals and often field questions and complaints in the grocery store- formerly Albertson's- where everybody shops-. And Kristi is actually Kristi frikkin' Terzian- look her up if you don't recognize the name. So, skiing is a foolish business if you want to make money. I'm glad that skiers are running it here- same with Alta. Deer Valley is a horribly overdone giant resort hotel with ski runs from mansion to mansion- my dad called it a "ghetto for the rich"  and now the giant real estate developer Talisker Corp. bought the Canyons in a fight with Vail - we were all hoping that Vail would win...

   Park City has really notched up the grooming to rival Deer Valley, gladed the frontside, and opened bunches of big, imaginative terrain parks that suck up the boarders like mosquito magnets...  They put in a new lift that really annoyed us locals because it accesses some of the best lazy hike-to terrain on the mountain. Then we figured out that we could lap it four times to one now, still before the tourists get hip...The owners have said that development stays at the base- so unlike Dv once you get back aways it's actually like being out in, well, nature! imagine that.... They do a good job here. I can't speak for Bachelor K-mart or Copper. Business is tough everywhere now, skiing must be just nuts. At least our hill is still run by skiers- hopefully with the real estate craze behind us, that will come back.   

post #45 of 56

Not for nothing but K-Mart is empty during the week.

 

You guys want to go elsewhere?

 

Good.

post #46 of 56

I remember when word of this first got out.  I was on the side of the expired pass holders.

Now that I see the small print, "as long as X shall continue to operate a....", and it looks like X is no longer operating, the pass IS expired.  Too bad, so sad, I hope you didn't shell out  big $$ for one second hand.

post #47 of 56

I have a question no one seems to have brought up yet..

 

Of the 1200+ passes in question, were any of them given away as an incentive or to long-term employees?  It's fairly common in the ski industry to give out lifetime passes to 20+ year employees.  (Unfortunately this practice is often very discretionary and whether or not you get one is up to upper management.  I know a 5 year employee who got one.) 

 

Anyway, that is a very rude slap in the face from Powdr to the people that built the resort they purchased. 

post #48 of 56

While understand the sense of entitlement felt by locals and lifetime pass holders when an outsider comes in and upsets their way of life, let's not lose sight of the fact that while for most of us on this forum skiing is our hobby/sport/passion/religion, it's Powdr's business; they invested a lot of money to buy Killington, and need to maximize profit on their investment. They're not a charity or public utility.

 

I don't know much about the ski industry, but it seems to me these Powdr guys are not amateurs; they've done this before. I guarantee you that they did some pretty detailed analysis before implementing their own plan.

 

Who knows exactly what this analysis told them, but under the old regime, Killington was a great mountain to ski, but not such a great skiing experience. It was pretty shabby for a place charging $80 for a lift ticket and their staff didn't always have the best of attitudes.

 

Bottom line:

Rant all you want, boycott the place, ski Magic instead (when or if nature permits, unless it goes bankrupt), drive another hour to Sugarbush, but they operate in whatever manner attracts the largest number of people who spend the most money (preferably in their hotels, their condos, their restaurants, etc.). 

 

 

 

post #49 of 56

I'm guessing you didn't bother to read the article in the first post:
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by vinn View Post

I have a question no one seems to have brought up yet..

 

Of the 1200+ passes in question, were any of them given away as an incentive or to long-term employees?  It's fairly common in the ski industry to give out lifetime passes to 20+ year employees.  (Unfortunately this practice is often very discretionary and whether or not you get one is up to upper management.  I know a 5 year employee who got one.) 

 

Anyway, that is a very rude slap in the face from Powdr to the people that built the resort they purchased. 


If you did you might have read this:

 

"She also noted that in its purchase agreement with American Skiing Co., SP Land agreed to honor 37 `lifetime’ passes, which did not include the names of the plaintiffs or the names of any class members. (A number of those lifetime passes were issued over the years to former employees)."

 

I'd call ASC the 'Bad Guy' if there is one here. They could have gone to the mat for the original investors- they didn't, they went to the mat for 37 pass holders.

post #50 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by garylk View Post

I don't know much about the ski industry, but it seems to me these Powdr guys are not amateurs; they've done this before. I guarantee you that they did some pretty detailed analysis before implementing their own plan.


 

 

 

The rumor around Rutland was that the Powdr plan was to get rid of all the discounted tickets, reduce the total number of skiers on the hill, raise prices and build a top shelf village.
They succeeded in reducing traffic and raising prices.  The rest of it, not so much.

 

BK 

post #51 of 56

My pass cost' $269.  I went to that mountain 28 times last year.  Either I spent $13 a day to go skiing, or it was paid for after 5 visits and I used their facilities for free 23 times.  If they made money off me it wasn't much.

post #52 of 56

Is there a type?  $269/28=$9.61.  Where did the $13 a day come from?
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by FujativeOCR View Post

My pass cost' $269.  I went to that mountain 28 times last year.  Either I spent $13 a day to go skiing, or it was paid for after 5 visits and I used their facilities for free 23 times.  If they made money off me it wasn't much.

post #53 of 56

The cheapest season pass you can buy for K is the midweek pass which is $399 + tax ($427 with the tax). It has been the same price since POWDR bought the mountain several years ago. That is the price if you buy early, which I do. I believe all passes go up another $50 + tax after May 1.

 

Unless of cou rse your a college student which I believe most people here are not but even that pass is $329 + tax.

post #54 of 56

SO happy there's no tax here in Montana....  $30 for tax!!!

post #55 of 56

Oh I dont go to Killington, I was just referencing my mountains pass costs vs. how much I use it.  Pointing out how little they make off pass holders.  On the other hand, I know a guy in Denver that bought the Colorado pass ($399?) and only went 5 times.  Barely paid it off with the $90 lift tickets out there.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by steamboat1 View Post

The cheapest season pass you can buy for K is the midweek pass which is $399 + tax ($427 with the tax). It has been the same price since POWDR bought the mountain several years ago. That is the price if you buy early, which I do. I believe all passes go up another $50 + tax after May 1.

 

Unless of cou rse your a college student which I believe most people here are not but even that pass is $329 + tax.

post #56 of 56


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmy View Post

Geez, who's Lifetime are we talking about, old man winter? 

 

.........................................................

 

1243 times $1149 equals one million four hundred twenty eight thousand dollars. Per year. Bad PR maybe, I really don't care about "the plight of the poor lifetime pass holder" either. $hit happens.



 Quote:

Originally Posted by MarkXS View Post


 

Umm, NO. You can't assume that every lifetime passholder you're dissing will automatically choose to purchase an $1149 pass. In fact you'd be nuts to think that would be the case.

 

...................................................

 

Whereas it is a safe assumption that at least some of those passholders, if they hadn't been screwed, would continue to introduce at least one new-to-Killington revenue-generating skier to the mountain. I'd take a SWAG at 250 new revenue-butts-in-chairlifts skiers per year for the remaining active lives of the passholders.

 

....................................................

 

Plus the negative multiplier effect - for every disgruntled customer (or former or potential customer turned off by a company), statistics (you look them up, they vary) range from 12-20 people that disgruntlee tells to avoid said company.

 

As "Cha-O-Lee The Foreigner" I had a line that is appropriate: "STOOPID IDEA. STOOPID IDEA!"

 

Never mind your Mr. Smith and Mr Wesson - Somebody should have gone "Bonk Bonk on the head" with the Croquet Mallet of Destiny to the POWDR managers who cooked this up. 

 

I do hear that Tony Hayward may want them to join his management team.


 

Mark, too funny "croquet mallet of destiny" I for one am glad Tony got his life back in time to make the Yacht races. I am assuming that none of them come back; I know that the money was never there and there's no guarantee it will come back but if 10% of them come back, Killington wins. Most of these passes were allowed to be transferred ONCE. This is one of those caviar emporer things, read the fine print and all. All of them, per the article, were sold between 1956 and 1968 people must live forever in Vermont. The best thing for these 1243 lifetime pass holders to do i think would be band together and see what kind of deal they can make, en masses on passes....... or maybe they could appeal to the supreme court, bet they'd get a five to four decision.

 

 


 

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