Be the boss
As the person in charge of booking the ski trip, you need to take control. Other people in the group will be throwing ideas around, overcomplicating everything. Some will be sitting on the fence whether they want to go or not. The problem with this is that it takes too long to organize, and your options get smaller the closer to your proposed holiday date.
You need to get lots of research done before approaching the other people in your group. Put together a shortlist of two or three options to put to the group. A shortlist will make it easier for people to decide if they are joining you. Don’t deviate from your options; it will make the whole process more complicated if you do. Stand firm, be the boss!
Choose the right resort
Your choice of ski resort will make a massive difference to your ski trip. There are a few things you need to consider when deciding which resort to go to. But, the primary factor is the skill level of your group.
Beginner skiers and snowboarders want somewhere with easy slopes and alternative activities to do on a rest day. More advanced skiers and snowboarders will want a wide range of terrain to explore.
If your group has mixed abilities, you need to pick a resort accordingly. One with a good mix of terrain, a decent selection of bars and restaurants, and a range of non-skiing activities.
You may also want to consider the altitude of a ski resort. Some group members will argue that you need to go to a super high resort, but higher isn’t always better.
Often, on bad weather days, higher altitude resorts close the lifts, while you will be able to ski on treelined slopes in lower resorts.
Choose the right accommodation
While you are coming up with your ski trip shortlist, decide what type of accommodation for the group. You can choose from hotels and self-catered properties, but you need to think about what most of the group will prefer.
Decide where you are all staying, and stick to it. If you give your friends and family too many options, they will all start debating over the accommodation with the hot tub versus the one close to the bar. Make it easy and decide for them.
Decide when to go on your ski trip
If you have kids in your group, this limits the choices of when you go on your ski trip. If you do have the flexibility to go whenever you want, you can experience a different vacation depending on the time of winter. For example, you can enjoy a white festive Christmas in a ski resort. Or you could go closer to Spring, where you will have milder temperatures and longer days.
Get the money!
Often, you will need to pay a deposit to secure your accommodation booking. This means that you need to know who is joining you on your ski trip. It is best to set a deadline for the group, this way; you know who is serious as they will pay up their share of the deposit.
Book your ski lessons before you go
It is usually a bad idea for friends and family to give less experienced skiers and snowboarders free lessons. These “lessons” are often dangerous and can result in stressful sense of humor malfunctions. If someone needs a lesson, they need one from a proper instructor. It is best to book lessons in advance, especially during peak times of the season. More experienced skiers and snowboarders will be able to book advanced lessons, guided excursions, and heli-skiing trips.
Buy your lift tickets online before your trip
To use the lift system in any ski resort, you need to buy lift tickets. When you arrive at the resort, going to the lift ticket office can be pretty annoying, as you can be waiting in line for quite a while. This is frustrating, especially when the snow and weather conditions are good. You would rather be on the mountain than standing around in the cold.
Most ski resorts allow you to buy your lift tickets online. This speeds up the process dramatically, and they are often cheaper online too.
Organize childcare in advance
One of the issues with traveling with kids when they are not at school is that everyone else is doing the same thing. This means that ski resorts can get pretty busy, including childcare providers. Therefore, similar to ski lessons, it is a good idea to book your childcare in advance. This way, your kids will be able to have the best time possible. You may not want to book childcare for the whole of your ski trip, but an evening meal or a day exploring the mountains child-free is nice to do.
Book your hire equipment before you go
During peak times of the winter, ski hire shops are super busy. So it is a good idea to book any hire equipment before you go. Good hire shops will have an online form for you to fill in, giving them an idea of what equipment you want to hire. You can choose ski and snowboard equipment based on your measurements, ability, and style.
Bonus tip - Give your group a checklist
There will always be someone that forgets something essential for your group ski trip. So, to avoid frustrating situations, why not put together a checklist for your group, so they bring everything they need.
Your checklist will vary for every group, but you should include the following:
- Ski/Snowboard equipment hire
- Passports if traveling abroad
- Socks and pants
- Ski/Snowboard outfits
- Suitable footwear
Now you know how to plan a group ski trip
If you are the lead booker of your group ski trip, all this may seem a little daunting. But, a little preparation will mean that everything has been taken care of, allowing you and your group to have the best time possible.