Budget-Friendly Tips For A Family Ski Trip:
A blog from Seren...
Family ski holidays can be expensive when you are looking at going with children. Whether you fly, drive or go on the train, skiing can be a fantastic adventure for the whole family. Here are some budget-friendly tips from Destination Ski to help you on your next family ski holiday.
Depending on numbers, the age of the children and your chosen ski resort, it may be more cost effective to drive rather than fly. For example, for a family of 4 looking for a French Alps ski holiday at Easter and hire a car to visit a few towns in the local area it may be more cost effective to drive. By the time you factor in airport parking, food at the airport, food on the flight, airfares, car hire/transfers it soon adds up.
However, if you do choose to drive you might need to include an additional nights accommodation to break up the journey at each end of the holiday, this could easily be the same cost as flights.
Self-catered accommodation can save you money. By creating meal plans, packed lunches and catering to your own taste, you may save money. This is a great opportunity to explore new food, try out new dishes and introduce your children to new flavours and regional dishes. Perhaps enjoy a meal at a local restaurant one evening rather than every night?
Going on your first family ski holiday is exciting and you will want to buy all the latest gear and make sure your children are warm enough, but if they grow out of it after one holiday? Ask family and friends if they have any ski jackets/trousers. Shop around places like TK Maxx and Aldi, they quite often have plenty of ski wear in stock or have special offers. Online companies such as Surfdome and Snow & Rock are great for goggles, gloves etc. Look at buying 2 pairs of gloves for your children, just in case you forget to put that damp pair out to dry ready for the next day. You can rent ski helmets but you must buy your own ski goggles and gloves.
Ski schools are a great way for your children to learn how to school and also be around children their own age. In France, you will find ski schools like ESF and New Generation which are great for young children and teenagers. Once they are comfortable with the equipment and feel safe on the slopes they could perhaps join you on the green slopes for a little family skiing time.
- A good tip for parents who make use of ski schools, write your phone number on a piece of paper or put a business card in the inside pocket of your child’s ski jacket, just in case anyone needs to contact you.
Little legs get tired after a day of skiing and as important as it is to teach them to carry their own ski’s there will come a point where their legs just won’t be able to carry them anymore. There are rucksacks you can purchase which have straps on the sides, you can slip their skis into them. Saves the damage to your kneecaps when your child accidentally swings their skis around!
- If you put a little snack into your child’s jacket for break time at ski school make sure it isn’t a Mars Bar, the caramel freezes and becomes inedible.
Little hands and feet get cold quickly but there are ways around this. First of all, tie a piece of string or ribbon between their gloves. Make sure it is long enough to go around their shoulders and isn’t restrictive. This means that when they take their gloves off, which they inevitably will, they should at least stay in one place.
Taking two pairs of gloves can be helpful as they can get cold and damp quite easily, also if you are building snowmen in the afternoon/evening if gives your other pair a chance to dry. Always pack more socks than you think you’ll need, inevitably one will always go missing.
You can now buy little snap activated hand warmers, these are great for keeping little fingers toasty on long cold days, they can just slip into their gloves. Boot warmers make those early mornings so much easier. Most ski lockers will store your boots on heated racks, there is nothing like a toasty warm pair of boots.
One of the best ideas I’ve seen over the years is the little ziplock food bags filled with crayons, a small notebook and a mini toy like a car or puzzle. These can be pulled out of a rucksack in seconds and help with those flight delays, or waiting for food at a restaurant. If you are looking for a little quiet time after lunch this is such a simple and cost-effective activity. Each child can have their own bag, no need to spend more than £3-£5 on each one.
For those long car journeys or flights, an iPad or portable DVD player can be a lifesaver. However, if the battery dies halfway through an episode of Paw Patrol you’re in trouble. Portable battery packs and charging cables are a must-have. They are also really useful if you need a bit of extra phone charge to check what time the ski bus heads back to your resort, or a quick currency conversion.
- Keeping your phone charged can also be useful when it comes to SatNav. If you have Google Maps you can download ‘offline maps’. This means that you can save your data and not hire a satnav device. You can use the offline maps to plan road trips. For example, if you have hired a car and you are driving from the airport to the resort you can have satnav for free using Google Maps. Just download them over WiFi before you leave the UK, you can either select a small area or the whole country. If the car has Bluetooth then you will be able to hear the instructions through the speaker system.
For More Information
We hope that these little hints and tips help you when you are packing for your next budget-friendly family ski trip. If you are looking to book your next family ski holiday enlist the help of a Destination Ski specialist, our team are experts in creating your perfect ski holiday, we can tailor-make a trip to meet your exact requirements. Call us on 02921 880022 or enquire online.
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