What should I expect?
Whether this is your first time skiing or your first time venturing from your home-town hill, a destination ski vacation is a truly unique experience and the trip you'll remember for a lifetime. Each ski region has unique ski conditions, weather, customs and culture, and we can help match you to the one that checks all your boxes. First, let's explore some common ski-vacation concerns and stereotypes:
I'll be cold the whole time.
That's simply not true. Sure, New England and Eastern Canada can be nippy, but the rest of the world's top ski destinations are not as cold as you might think. The Alps, California, Colorado, Utah, Western Canada, South America and even Alaska see plenty of winter days where mild winter temperatures (25°F-35°F) and sunshine are plentiful. This is particularly true of California, Colorado, Utah and the Alps. When it's not snowing, conditions are clear and the mountain sunhine is warm and strong. Additionally, cold snaps are more common in December and January, but you can avoid this by booking your ski vacation later in the season, like March or even April.
I'll be forced to ski something that's too hard. Again, not true. Every resort, even the most challenging (like Jackson Hole), provide well-maintained groomers, so beginners and intermediates can explore and enjoy the entire mountain.
My travel plans could be affected by a snow storm.
That's true. We all want our ski vacation to be a winter wonderland, but no one wants it to snow when they're trying to reach the mountains. Mother Nature doesn't always cooperate, but know that our Mountain Travel Experts will work hard to ensure you arrive safely and as quickly as possible. However, the ultimate assurance is purchasing travel insurance along with your ski vacation. Riding a chairlift is scary.
If you're afraid of heights, riding a chairlift can be a daunting task. You can rest assured knowing that the resorts employ the latest technology and safety protocol to ensure guests are extremely safe throughout the ride. Many Western, Canadian and European resorts have gondolas (or cable cars) or trams that provide a warmer and more relaxing experience, which is a great option for someone who is hesitant to ride an open-air chairlift. In gondolas, guests are contained within an enclosed cab, usually with seats (sometimes heated).
I could suffer from altitude sickness. Depending on where you go, that's a possibility, but you can easily avoid or reduce that scenario without having to compromise which destination you choose by following our tips. Regions with high-altitude resorts include: Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, Montana, parts of British Columbia, South America and the Alps. Lower-altitude resorts include: New England, Whistler Blackcomb and Sun Valley. Skiing in powder looks hard.
With the right skis or board and a lesson or two, powder skiing is well within your reach. Once you've nailed down the technique, it's one of the most rewarding parts of skiing or snowboarding. However, if your not quite there, don't sell yourself short on a ski trip out West or to Europe. Thanks to highly sophisticated grooming machines, you can enjoy manicured runs and the spectacular views and local mountain culture unique to the Rockies or the Alps.