Are you thinking of heading out on a ski trip for the first time as a family? A few years ago, my family went on a Lake George, NY ski vacation – the first time my kids skied and only the second time I skied. I think skiing as a family is a wonderful activity, but it’s also exhausting. Struggling with my equipment and poles while also trying to help my kids was quite a challenge. At the end of the day, we were so happy we did it – but it definitely does take some advance planning to make sure you enjoy yourself as much as possible. We asked some experts what they would recommend to beginner families – here are some of the responses. If you are trying to decide where to ski, check out our family ski guide!
Ski Tips for Beginner Families
Consider renting ski clothes. There are a variety of companies who will rent jackets/bibs/gloves… and if you don’t own any of this gear, it can be a better deal than trying to buy it all in your home town.
Rent ski gear. Don’t bother flying with your old equipment! The airlines will charge you an arm and a leg, and you can just rent the latest/greatest gear when you arrive. Bring your boots, but leave the old skis at home.
Go to a resort that is known for service. Skiing involves lots of carrying… … lots of gear… lots of teaching… lots of patience.. If you go to a resort that is more “do it yourself” that doesn’t focus on the customer experience across all levels, you will be frustrated and disappointed and EXHAUSTED. – Sally Spaulding
Public Relations Director, Hospitality Division | Aspen Skiing Company
One tip for families taking their first ski vacation is to take lessons from professional instructors – for both parents and kids. Instructors have ways of teaching skiing and snowboarding that can make learning both easy and fun – where as it can otherwise sometimes be a frustrating experience. – Amelia Richmond Public Relations Manager, Squaw Valley
Protect yourself. The sun’s reflection off snow can burn, so bring along sun screen and use it. Lip balm is also helpful, as is hand cream to add moisture in response to the dry winter air. – John Poimiroo, www.poimiroo.com
Visit a resort that offers more on-site that alpine skiing. That way, if one wants to call it “quits” for the day – not everyone needs to quit! Windham Mountain in New York’s Catskills has a kid’s adventure park with pint-sized snowmobiles, ice skating, euro bungee, tubing and Nordic sports. – Rebecca Steffan, PR Manager, Inform PR
Take time to adjust to the altitude – If you do not live at high altitude, you may want to wait at least a day before hitting the slopes. Altitude affects people differently. Several of my family members experienced mild issues due to the altitude upon arrival. Why not take it easy and get used to your surroundings for a day or two? Then, when you do hit the slopes, you will be more able to enjoy the experience for the whole day. – Kathy Gerhardt, Manager, Public Relations, Travel Leaders Group
What tips do you recommend?
Get Our 7 Travel Tips
Subscribe to get 7 essential family travel tips and our weekly newsletter filled with tips, tricks, and info for family travelers.