When you want to ski, but, aren't sure where to go or how to choose a ski resort that meets your needs, these tips will help you find a ski area that's a good fit for your experience level.
Review Ski Resorts
Regardless of the level skier you are, it's important to check the statistics for the ski resorts you are interested prior to booking your ski trip. All resorts should provide information on the current conditions, the base snow, the percentage of trails for each level skier (beginner, intermediate and expert) and the lesson programs offered.
In many cases, you'll be able to purchase a lift ticket in advance. Online purchases are often available at discounts, so booking online is a good way to ski and save.
Picking a Ski Area
Are you going skiing for the first time? Before you head to the ski slopes, it's important to pick a ski area or ski resort that will coordinate all the logistics, from providing expert instruction to getting your lift ticket and rental equipment.
Beginner Skiers - Start Small
When you're just starting out on skis, you don't need to a top-level ski resort full of black diamond (advanced skier) trails. Instead, you'll be fine at a smaller mountain with plenty of trails for beginner skiers.
Smaller ski areas are often less crowded than the larger resorts, which means that your ski day will run more smoothly. You won't have to worry about finding a parking spot or taking a shuttle to the slopes. There will be shorter waits for ski lifts and shorter lines for lunch in the ski lodge.
Look for a resort with a dedicated area for new skiers, including a slow, easy means of transport to the top of the learning hill. You will be able to ski more comfortably (and safely) on a hill that isn't full of expert skiers moving fast.
Experts - Find an Advanced Ski Resort
If you are an expert skier, you know that spending a day at a ski resort that offers no advanced terrain can be boring. These ski resorts, located in North America, offer plenty of trails for beginners, intermediates, and experts. However, these ski resorts have advanced trails that will challenge expert skiers.
Resorts for Families
Are you ready to take your family on a ski vacation? It's important to choose a ski resort that is geared towards families and children. Not all ski resorts are suitable for younger skiers.
Avoid the Weekend
If you can ski mid-week, you'll not only avoid the crowds, but, you also will be able to get a discounted mid-week lift ticket. Mid-week specials are usually offered from Tuesday - Thursday. If you're staying over, check on ski and stay packages that include a hotel room and lift tickets.
Get a Package
Regardless of your skiing ability, consider resorts which offer ski lesson package deals. The package may include an all-day lift ticket for the learning area, beginner skis, boots, and poles, and at least a two hour small group lesson. For more advanced skiers, a clinic and equipment geared to a higher level skier may be an option. If the package doesn't include equipment, choose a ski resort that has an on-site ski rental shop.