How to Plan the Perfect Ski Trip: The Ultimate Guide to Planning Your First Ski Holiday

5 July, 2024 7 min read

If you are planning your first ski trip and don’t know where to start, then this guide is for you. There are various factors to consider when booking a ski trip, which can quickly become overwhelming. But we’re here to help! Read on to discover a thorough breakdown of everything you need to consider when booking a ski trip, from your budget to your travel, to make booking your dream ski trip simple!  

10 Key Things to Consider When Booking a Ski Trip:

ski trip planning

1. What’s Your Budget? 

The first thing to think about when booking a ski trip is your budget. If you are travelling in a group make sure this is agreed on by everyone. Your budget will affect all of your decisions and ultimately shape your trip. The costs of a ski trip can add up fast, so having an idea of how much you would like to spend before you start booking is always recommended and will make your planning and decision-making a lot easier. While they can be expensive, ski trips don’t have to break the bank and it is possible to ski on a budget. For an insight into how much a ski trip can typically cost take a look at our guide to how much a European ski holiday costs in 2024

2. When to Go

Next, you need to decide when you want to go skiing. Time of year is a key factor to consider when booking your ski trip as snow conditions and crowds vary throughout the season. If you want to experience the best snow conditions possible, it is advised to travel between January and March. Travelling outside of peak weeks (Christmas holidays, February half-term and Easter) can be a lot more cost-effective and there will be fewer people on the slopes which will be beneficial if you are a beginner skier. Remember to check flights when selecting your dates, as this can greatly impact the price of your trip. Check out our handy guide to ski resort opening and closing dates to help with your ski holiday planning. 

3. Where to Go  

If you have started some research on where to go skiing in Europe, then you are probably aware that there are hundreds of excellent ski resorts to choose from. Europe is home to some of the biggest and most popular ski resorts in the world, as well as some incredible hidden gems. Whether you are looking for family-friendly resorts, après-ski hot spots or snow-sure locations, there is a resort to suit everyone. Some of our favourite beginner-friendly resorts in Europe include Les Arcs, Cervinia and Avoriaz. For more inspiration on where to go skiing, check out our comprehensive resort guides, packed with insider insights and recommendations. 

4. Where to Stay

The next thing to think about is your ski accommodation. There are several types of ski accommodation to choose from, including chalets, apartments and hotels. Chalets typically cater to large groups and often come with chalet hosts who cook and clean for you. Whereas, many apartments are self-catered and can be a better option for those with a stricter budget. As a beginner, booking accommodation with ski-in-ski-out convenience can make your life a lot easier as it enables you to ski straight from the slopes to your door. This means you won’t have to carry your equipment to the lifts and back each day. Ultimately, your choice of ski accommodation will depend on your personal preferences, group size and budget. 

5. How to Get There

Once you’ve sorted your accommodation you need to think about how you’ll get there. Ski resorts are not always the easiest to get to, however, there are many resorts with short transfer times that can be great options for families or weekend ski trips. One of the most convenient ways to get to the majority of European ski resorts is via a transfer service. This can be booked in advance and is a quick and easy way to get from the airport straight to your accommodation. Ski Lifts is an excellent transfer company that provides reliable, hassle-free transfers to a wide range of destinations across the Alps. SkiLifts guarantees a seamless journey from the airport to your resort with professional local drivers and a range of transfer options to suit your needs. 

6. Ski Lessons 

Taking ski lessons is the best way to effectively and efficiently advance your skiing. Learning to ski is an exhilarating experience and ski lessons will enable you to make the most of your time in the mountains. Booking your ski lessons ahead of time will ensure you have the best instructor for your needs and means you won’t run the risk of arriving at the resort without anyone available, especially during peak weeks. It is simple to book ski lessons on Maison Sport. You just need to enter your resort, dates and discipline, then select the instructor that best suits you. 

7. Ski Clothing and Equipment Rental 

You’ll need to get kitted out with the correct ski clothing and gear ahead of your trip. Read our guide to ski gear essentials and our handy ski trip packing list to make sure you have everything you need for the slopes! You will also need to arrange ski equipment hire. You can easily add discounted SkiSet ski rental to your booking on Maison Sport. You will then be able to collect your equipment from any SkiSet shop in the resort that you placed your booking in. Booking your ski rental ahead of time on our website, rather than organising your rental in resort, will save you a significant amount of time and money!

8. Lift Pass

To allow you to access the slopes you will need a lift pass, which is issued by the ski resort that you are going to. You can buy your lift pass in advance, with some resorts offering  discounted prices online. If this option is available to you then be sure to plan ahead, as it will save you time and money and means you will have one less thing to worry about when you arrive. Ski passes vary in price depending on the resort, but many resorts offer a beginner lift pass or discounts for children and families. Check out our guide to ski pass prices in Europe, which includes lift pass prices for several of Europe’s most popular ski resorts.  

9. Insurance 

It’s incredibly important that you get insured for your ski trip. Skiing is an extreme sport and though an accident is unlikely to occur, being insured is highly recommended to cover you if anything were to happen. This step can be easily forgotten, but being insured will give you peace of mind on your trip and is a small cost for the protection and security that it gives you. Make sure that you add winter sports cover to your insurance package so that you are completely covered for your ski trip. Alternatively, many resorts offer insurance as an add-on when you buy your lift pass which will also offer you excellent cover.

10.When to Book

The sooner you book your ski trip the better! Booking your ski trip in advance can save you money on flights, accommodation and ski rental. Lock down your dates early and you’ll be rewarded with early booking deals. Booking early also means you can secure your top choice accommodation and ski instructor. So don’t hesitate – book that trip! 

You’re All Set for Your Ski Trip!

ski trip planning

With all of these things ticked off, you’ll be ready to hit the slopes! To get you even more prepared before you head off on your first ski trip, we recommend taking a couple of lessons on a dry ski slope or at an indoor snow centre in the UK. This will set you up nicely for your lessons in your chosen resort. If you can learn some of the basic skills like putting on your skis/board and boots, how to stop and how to fall over safely, you’ll feel more confident and prepared when you get to the mountains! 

Book ski lessons!

Book top rated independent ski and snowboard instructors on Maison Sport. Search now for your perfect instructor!

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