6 Top Tips for Saving Money for a Ski Weekend

Skiers on ridge in Chamonix France

Skiing Weekend

6 Top Tips for Saving Money for a Ski Weekend

I am always asked how it is possible that I can go skiing regularly without breaking the bank. It is simple, I do a lot of extended ski weekend trips. Don’t get me wrong, they can be expensive but with a bit of advanced planning, it is definitely possible to do without breaking the budget.

 

5 Top Tips for Saving Money for a Ski weekend

Overlooking Les Gets Ski Resort, France

What makes for saving money so you have a great ski weekend? There are a few important things to consider, ranging from the distance to the resort from the airport, to how well a mountain is suited for your group of friends or family.


Here are my 6 Top Tips for Saving Money for a Ski Weekend

skiing above the clouds at La Clusaz France

La Clusaz Ski Resort – France

1 – Distance to the Airport – Easily Accessible

You want to be able to fly into somewhere that is easily accessible and only a short distance to your resort. With various airlines doing more and more scheduled flights through Europe, it is possible to get midweek, early morning and late night flights. Not just the chartered flights that are usually offered from Saturday to Saturday or Sunday to Sunday.

village of Morzine is a great place to ski and save money with a short airport transfer

Morzine village Ski Resort

Work on the basis of travelling time from the airport to the ski resorts from one to two hours. You don’t want to spend your whole time travelling when you could be snowboarding or skiing (or enjoying the Apreski). Remember, the further away the ski resort is from the airport, the more money it will usually cost you to get there, especially via a transfer. Remember the closer the ski resort, the more time you can enjoy your ski weekend.

Top Tip 

  • Look at airports like Geneva which has a variety of ski resorts in both France and Switzerland and is roughly within an hour and a half travelling time. Also, being a major international airport they offer a variety of flights/times of day to suit your needs too.
Top Tips for Saving Money for weekend in Val d'Isere

Overlooking the ski slopes Val d’Isere Ski Resort, France

2 – Choosing the right Airline

Saving money on your accommodation as well as your flights is a big part of your ski weekend budget.  You don’t want to book a cheap flight and then have to add on extra luggage like boots and skis to find out that it ends up costing you a small fortune or sometimes more than the flight itself.

Flying over the snow covered Alps

Flying over the Alps

If you are not a frequent flyer and don’t have the benefits like free additional baggage it might take a little research to choose a relevant airline. Take care though and check the fine print. I have been caught before thinking I could take my skis and bags, only to find when I arrived at the airport they only charged me for my bags and not my skis.

Overlooking the slopes of the Cervinia Ski Resort, Italy

Overlooking the slopes of the Cervinia Ski Resort, Italy

Top Tip

  • If you are only going for a couple of days, try taking your ski boots as carry on (depending on the airline) and check your bag in. Sometimes hiring just the skis for the weekend can be so much cheaper than checking in your own skis on a flight (Not to mention the inconvenience of carrying them around).
Skiers on the chairlift in Val Thorens Ski Resort, France

The chairlifts Val Thorens Ski Resort France

  • Some major airlines like Austrian Airways and Swiss Air allow you to take your skis and snowboard without additional cost on various routes during the winter season. 
Tips of the skis with a background of the Italian Alps

Skiing Cervinia on a ski weekend  – Italian Alps

3 – Choosing Accommodation

Accommodation for an extended ski weekend is not always easy to book or come by, most places still want to offer Week to Week (especially during the high season). They usually only release the availability at the last minute for short-term which is sometimes limited to the days that they have.

 

Booking.com

The problem with this though is that you could end up paying more money than if you booked a week skiing package and will not save money. As either your flights or accommodation will be too expensive as your booking either one of these things at the last minute.

Overlooking Val Thorens Ski Resort

The view from our hotel Val Thorens Ski Resort – France

If you have an idea which resort you want to go to for a ski weekend, book your flights in advance and then look for accommodation afterwards. As flight prices tend to rise higher or more quickly than accommodation prices in most cases. You also have the option that if you cannot stay in the ski resort you want, you can book accommodation in the nearby resort or ski region. Most resorts and ski regions are linked via chairlifts, gondolas and buses these days which gives you greater access to a ski area or desired resort.

Top Tip

  • Most resorts tend to offer a Saturday to Wednesday, then Wednesday to Sunday booking due to various things like overlap of their week to week bookings.  Also, Saturday to Wednesday tend to be a little quieter so better for taking families, not to mention cheaper for a ski weekend.

Snow covered Le Grand Bornand, France

On the chairlifts, Le Grand Bornand Ski Resort – France

4 – Runs/Slopes

After you arrive at your resort, what matters most are the ski slopes themselves, right? You don’t want to choose a resort to find that when you get there the runs are not for you. For example, not being an overly confident skier and then trying to go down the last run of the day only to find it is narrow and full of moguls.

Skiing on fresh snow Morzine Ski Resort France

Skiing on the fresh snow in the morning at Morzine Ski Resort France

Also try to get familiar with the grading of ski slopes, as not all countries are the same, like runs in Austria are different to the grading in France. This will allow you to enjoy your ski weekend even more.

Top Tip

  • If you’re not sure on the runs, you can always go to the resort’s tourism site and download the Piste map. This will give you a good indication of the type of runs they have within and around the resorts
St Christoph in Austria is great place to ski for a weekend and save money

Skiing over to St Christoph, Austria

5 – Buy your Ski Pass online

Nearly everything is available online these days and most ski resorts now offer ski passes online before you arrive. Look around because some resorts offer ski weekend discounts meaning you can be saving money and spending it on the all important apres ski!

Top Tip

While online you can familiarise yourself with the runs before you arrive which saves more time for the skiing.

 

signpost on the slopes to Italy or Switzerland

At the ski border of Cervinia Italy and Zermatt Switzerland

6 – Apres ski (Social Activites after a day of skiing)

Though this one really is a personal opinion and may not be a factor if you are travelling with your family. Apres ski is usually an important decision maker when you are travelling with a group of friends whether you’re on a ski weekend or for a week. There is nothing more enjoyable than having a nice glass of wine (or beer) after a hard day of skiing and dancing around in your ski boots singing along to the trashy music and not having a care in the world that you know all the words to every song!!!

Apres Ski bar packed with skiers

Apres ski Mooserwirt, St Anton Austria

 Top Tip  

If you are not a confident skier or snowboarder and don’t want to have a drink and then try to ski home, a lot of bars have free shuttle buses. If you are too high up on the mountain the gondola/chairlift will stay open, allowing people to get back down the mountain safely.

Enjoying a wine while on the slopes

Apres Ski Ischgl, Austria

Thank you for reading my article 6 Top Tips for Saving Money for a Ski Weekend, I hope it helped you get some ideas on saving money for a Ski weekend.  Morzine Ski Resort and Les Gets Ski Resort are resorts that are within an hour Gevena Aiport and a great for ski weekend trip with friends or with family.

Selfie on the chairlift in Les Gets ski resort

A selfie on the chairlift, Les Gets Ski Resort

If there is anything more you would like to know or want more tips for saving money for skiing, please do not hesitate to message me. Happy Skiing and enjoy your adventure

Disclaimer: All views are my own and based on my own experience on saving money for a ski weekend

Panoramic view of snow covered mountains in Italy

Overlooking the Breuil-Cervini Ski Resort with Matterhorn Mountain

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41 Comments

  1. Great advice. I’ll have to look into the Saturday – Wednesday option. Can’t wait for the next snowboarding season to begin!

  2. Great tips! We travel with kids and can only ski during school break, so we book ski holidays half a year in advance. It’s always a struggle to find affordable ski holidays in peak times… Would love to go more often on ski weekends like you do!

  3. Great tips as it’s an expensive sport! I am lucky in that my Mum lives in Switzerland so it makes it cheaper as we have accommodation sorted! I think there are also good train connections if you go from the UK though have not done that personally. I can recommend the Portes du Soleil region (I learnt to ski there a long time ago when I was an au pair for 2 winter seasons)easy to get to from Geneva too!

    1. That’s so handy, having free accommodation. I love Portes du Soleil area, it is one of my favourite places to visit especially as you can link up to 12 other resorts.

    1. You are more than welcome. You will have message me when you go Skiing and I can help you with your trip 🙂

    1. Thanks, I love skiing. You are correct, it can be very expensive and I have been caught a few times paying a big bill. 🙂

  4. I just love the tips you have put together in this post. So may great ideas that are simply very helpful and practical. You are also obviously a very talented photographer – your photos are nothing short of stunning and make me want to make some bookings right now!

  5. One of the easiest ways to save money skiing is to shop your rentals a bit. If you can rent in town, instead of on the mountain, not only can you save some bucks but you can also get a more selection. You might just end up on the latest hi-tech gear instead of waiting in line for the rental queen at the lodge pro shop.

  6. Those are some very useful tips. For me choosing accommodation is the most important thing. It can make or break your trip. I like your idea of booking flights before the accommodation. Never thought about it that way.

  7. These are all fantastic tips – especially knowing that booking Saturday to Wednesday is more cost effective. Had no idea of this tip! I usually try to book some where that is easily accessible to the airport to avoid costly taxis/transport…but it also gives me more time!

  8. Great tips! It is crazy how important airport proximity can be to travel plans, huh? And even if it’s close to an airport, some of the smaller ones are SO expensive! I don’t ski but these tips are pretty universal for saving money, so thanks for sharing 🙂

  9. Great tips for saving money for ski weekend. I am not confident in skiing , but would love to visit a ski resort during season to enjoy other activities. My love for snowy landscape and only for that experience I would love to checked in a resort. Awesome post. Its helpful.

  10. That’s some great tips there. I love skiing but in India you get to do skiing at selective places only and during the season the rates go sky rocking. I will keep these tips in mind 🙂

  11. These are some really great tips . I have no experience on ski but am surely gonna plan for this winter. Thanks alot for sharing these useful tips

  12. Really helpful post! The first three tips can really be applied to any trip, doing your research to pick the right airport/airline/accommodation is so important to save money and have a successful trip. Great tip on buying the passes online!

  13. You have some great tips there. You are right I should look at the ski passes online before I go. It can definitely save time.

  14. We are not skiers but we want to try it over a weekend, as we think a week might be to much for us. I have found your tips very useful especially about distance to the airport, we had not really taken that into consideration. Thanks

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