What better to do in the middle of winter than to go skiing? It’s a great outdoor activity that you can undertake solo or with a group of friends. Plus, it’s something that both young children and adults can get into, making it great for family trips but there are some obvious mistakes to avoid on your next ski trip.
There are some things you should know before you head off on your next skiing adventure – below we have some tips for both skiing newbies and veterans to ensure that your next trip goes as smoothly as possible.
Mistakes to Avoid On Your Next Ski Trip
Avoid Going to a Hardcore Ski Hill If You’re a Newbie
For your safety, make sure that there are ski slopes appropriate for your level at whatever site you’re headed off to. You don’t want to be met with steep slopes when you’ve barely ever skied before. New to Ski has a guide for what colours are associated with what difficulties in various countries. For example, in the United States and Canada, it is a little different to Europe where green is associated with beginner difficulty, blue with early intermediate difficulty, red with advanced intermediate difficulty and black with advanced difficulty.
Not Being Flexible with Dates
If you have a bit of leeway for when you’re able to go skiing, why not try skiing in the spring? If you find that skiing around Christmas or other peak times is a bit expensive for your budget, you might find that planning a ski trip for around March or April is a little more budget-friendly. Plus, there’s the bonus of not having to deal with frigid temperatures. One thing to look out for regardless of when you’re booking dates is when schools are on holiday – prices may not budge much and you’ll be dealing with a crowded ski slope. The slopes at Grands Montets are usually open till at least the 2nd May!
Not Comparing the Costs between Renting and Owning Ski Gear
There’s a significant cost difference between owning and renting ski gear – according to Ski Trip Guide, the average daily rental cost for ski gear in the USA is about $40 while buying all necessary ski gear averages out to be around $753.
That’s not to say that renting is always the better choice – if you go skiing often enough, it could actually save you money in the long run to buy your own gear. In addition, having the exact same equipment to use every time you go skiing helps you improve faster. If you aren’t sure what kind of equipment suits you best, renting can be a good way to try out several types of gear before you make the commitment of purchasing. See more details here on whether to rent or buy!
You’ll also want to consider the following: will you need to rent space to store skiing gear? Is travelling to your ski lodge with skiing gear too burdensome (e.g. you’re travelling internationally to ski and you have limited storage space).
Not Bringing Snacks
Snacks are essential for any prolonged outdoor activity – you don’t want to be tired out from hours of skiing only to find that you have limited to no food options available. Things like nuts, dried fruit, granola bars, small sandwiches or soup in a thermos are all relatively lightweight options that you can bring with you on your skiing adventure. Remember to bring ice packs for any foods that will spoil easily.
Not Thinking About Other Activities Besides Skiing
Skiing is definitely a lot of fun, but it’s also pretty tiring. While it’ll probably be the main activity for your mountain getaway, there are also plenty of other activities to do in the mountains – we’ve listed some other things for you to do at ski resorts:
· Snow Tubing – Snow tubing isn’t just for kids – it’s fun for pretty much anyone. It’s also a nice break from skiing. All you need to do is take a lift up to the top of a slope and slide down in what looks like a giant doughnut – pretty much no effort required. This is available for families in Les Houches and Flegere.
· Sledging – Rather than keeping your old sledge in your basement, why not take it along with you on your next skiing adventure? Fun fact: adults tend to go faster on sledges than children due to being larger.
· Snow Shoeing – If you still want to get your physical activity in for the day but want to do something less demanding than skiing, snowshoeing is a good compromise. You can book your snowshoe tour here.
· Snowboarding – If you’re finding that skiing isn’t really your thing, that doesn’t mean your trip is a flop – you can try out snowboarding instead. You can book a beginners snowboarding course here.
· Skating – There is an indoor skating rink in Chamonix centre and an outdoor rink that’s open from December – March in Les Houches.
· Après-ski – For some people, the best part of skiing is the après-ski – what exactly après-ski is for each person is a little different. It could be gathering around a fire in a lodge drinking hot chocolate, cooking dinner in your accommodation with your friends or dancing on the tables at the folie douce.
You can see a full list of non-skiing activities here.
Not Planning Enough Time to Rest, Recharge and Relax
After a few days on the hills, it’s likely that your muscles will be sore and you’ll need some time to recuperate. Rather than being bored in your accommodations, research other low impact activities you can partake in while you recover. Heading into town for some shopping , choose alternative activities we’ve listed above or recover in one of Chamonix’s Spa’s.
These are the main mistakes to avoid on your next ski trip but the most important is just to have fun and enjoy your trip to Chamonix!