The prospect of booking a ski holiday â?? and getting it right for everybody travelling â?? can be daunting. Here are some tips from Flight Centre.
1. Know your budget and plan accordingly
Start by making sure you have an overall budget for your dream ski trip and stick to it. Giving your travel consultant an idea of how much you would like to spend allows them to create the kind of holiday that lives up to its promise without the bulging credit card statement at the end of it all. Make sure your budget includes equipment hire, lift passes, and lessons if needed.
2.Choose the right destination
Ski resorts come in all shapes and sizes, catering for specific needs. If youâ??re a first time skier or travelling with the kids then itâ??s a good idea to head for a resort that will accommodate you. Your ski resort will ideally offer local beginner lift passes, a good ski school and gentle nursery slopes for you to â??up your confidence levelsâ??. If, however, youâ??re a master on the slopes then youâ??ll want a resort that offers challenging terrain and perhaps the opportunity to go off-piste. While groups should look for a balance of both so that everyone is catered for.
3. Book tours with maximum inclusions
Ask your travel consultant about the difference between the fully inclusive and all -inclusive options offered on ski holidays. You will be pleasantly surprised at how much holiday moola you can save by booking a fully or all-inclusive option. These options inevitably include most meals, some drinks and snacking options throughout the day. Eating and drinking can really â??eatâ?? into a holiday budget so this is also a great way to make sure that most meals are taken care of, leaving you with some spending money for shopping.
4. Travel insurance is a must
Travel rule number one: if you canâ??t afford travel insurance, you canâ??t afford to travel. And thereâ??s no type of holiday where this rule applies more than a ski holiday. The highs of hurtling down a mountain on two thin planks of wood come with certain risks. Choosing the right policy for your needs is vital.
5. Choose the right accommodation
Just as the different resorts offer features designed to appeal to different levels of skiers, the accommodation on offer varies accordingly. Families, groups and singles are catered for and you have the choice of staying on the slopes, in town in a B&B or perhaps a self-catering chalet or apartment is perfect for your plans. When staying on the snow you may feel isolated from all the aprÃ©s-ski action in town, but you will be the first to head for the slopes.
6. Take some ski lessons before you go
If youâ??ve never skied before or are a bit rusty then head for one of the many ski schools around South Africa to brush up on your technique or get a taste for the power of the powder.
7. Investigate equipment hire
If youâ??re a first time skier and not completely sure skiing is for you, then consider hiring ski gear for your trip. Most ski lodges have a range of equipment from skis to goggles and ski suits in all shapes and sizes. This will also cut down on the amount of luggage you need to pack.
The trick to staying warm on the slopes is to layer your clothing. Invest in some good thermal underwear, some waterproof gloves and beanies. Dress in warm, breathable layers that can easily be removed and carried with you while you glide down the slopes.
9. Time your ski trip
The timing of your ski trip could bag you considerable savings and other benefits. School holidays are generally considered high season, so where possible, consider an early or late season trip, as there are often significant savings. This is also a good time for beginners as the slopes are less crowded
Flight Centre has the perfect ski product to suit your pocket. Contact them on 0860 400 747 or visit www.flightcentre.co.za for information and packages that will have you heading for the powdery slopes.