Whether you’re a veteran skier or a fresh-faced bunny sloper, planning the family ski trip may seem like a daunting task but, really, the biggest task is deciding where you want to go. The earlier you decide, the easier it’ll be to make a plan and secure your top choices for hotels and restaurant as well as signing up for ski lessons. Ready to get planning your trip? Here are some simple tips for planning a ski trip everyone will remember!

Vacation with extended family or friends

If you have children, it can be particularly fun to get a large group together for a ski vacation. Resorts will often have kids’ camps so the kids can go off together while the adults hit the trails. It can also be more economical to go with a large group as you could go in on a slope-side condo or townhome together and prepare some of your own meals.

Timing is everything

Depending on where you want to ski, the season can last between four and six months. By choosing to ski during an off-peak time, likely before Christmas or after mid-March, you might be able to save a bundle. You’ll also want to book your trip early and look for deals.

Create an itinerary

Making activity and meal reservations before you arrive at your resort can be essential, especially at the most popular ski resorts. If you’re staying in a condo or rental house and you plan to make meals at home, make a menu so you know exactly what to buy from the store. Create a special folder or binder for all your reservation information, then you’ll have it on hand when you arrive at your destination. Even better: Create a document or calendar on the cloud so all your guests have access to the plans.

Save on equipment rental and lift tickets

If you’re planning your ski trip on a budget, you’ll want to price-out your equipment rental in advance. While renting equipment at the resort is generally the most convenient way to go, you can possible save money by renting your equipment online from a different ski outfitter. Plus, by renting equipment you save yourself the hassle of hauling gear to and from home but, if you’re a family of avid skiers, consider investing in some select equipment. For example, a youth ski helmet can cost as little as $40 but can rent for upwards of $10 per day.

The same goes for lift tickets. At popular resorts — think Aspen or Breckenridge — you could pay $100 or more per day for a lift ticket! Look into purchasing your lift tickets online in advance. You’ll also likely save when you purchase a multi-date ticket; if you’ll be vacationing for close to a week, check into a season pass.

Pack early

You’ll want to get your gear purchased as early in the season as possible and definitely before you reach your destination. Although your resort will likely have what you need on hand, you’ll pay significantly higher prices for the convenience.

Here’s a list of items each family member will likely need:

  • Turtlenecks and sweaters
  • Long underwear
  • Ski-socks
  • Neck warmer or face mask
  • Ski jacket
  • Ski pants
  • Mittens or gloves and liners
  • A hat
  • Sunscreen and lip balm

Consider packing all of your ski clothes and accessories into a separate suitcase and packing everyday where into another smaller bag.

No matter where your winter adventures take you, know that your world is protected. To learn more about how you can be covered on and off the slopes, contact your local Farm Bureau Agent