How to Get Cheap Ski Lift Passes

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The ski industry has gone through a bit of a change recently. Gone are the days when you’d turn up at the resort and buy your ski ticket when you got there.

Now there are lots ways of getting cheap ski lift passes – many of which can save you a lot of money.

Most ski resorts have followed in the footsteps of airlines and reduced ski pass prices on days when business is quiet (such as the middle of the week). In term they also charge more during the popular dates and offer discounts for those booking in advance online.

As there are now more ways than ever to buy your lift passes, it’s harder than ever to know whether you’re getting the best price or not. Because of this, it’s best to check out a few different options before buying to give yourself the best chance.

Here are a few tips for helping you find the best deal out there:

Check Out the Ski Specialists

As the internet has grown, specialist ski lift websites have emerged (such as Liftopia.com and LiftTickets.com) that offer great discounts on ski lift tickets (up to 80% on some occasions).

Ski LiftIn many cases the prices of lift tickets on these websites is even cheaper than the prices listed on local ski resorts’ websites, so they should be your first port of call when looking for lift passes.

So what’s the catch? Why are lift tickets so cheap on these websites?

Typically, tickets booked on these sites need to be paid for in full upon booking (as opposed to paying for them when you get there) and you won’t get the option of canceling them last minute (unless you pay extra).

Look on the Resort’s Website

Most ski resorts that have their own website will give you the option of purchasing ski lift tickets online. Purchasing from these websites in advance can often result in the cheapest prices

Look Out for Package Deals

Sites such as Ski.com work in conjunction with ski resorts and allow you to buy your lift ticket and book your lodging together in one package.

Booking both of these things together gives you access to savings that you would otherwise be unable to get if you were buying them separately.

Buy Your Tickets Well in Advance

With ski lift passes (as with most things), the further you book in advance, the better the deal you’ll get.

Liftopia.com recently reported that by buying your lift pass ticket 7 days in advance you’ll save 27% off the price, and by buying your ticket over 14 days in advance you can save 33% off the price (on average).

The absolute worst place you can buy your tickets is at the ticket window on the day. Prices will be at their highest and you’re unlikely to be offered any savings, so always try to book in advance whenever possible.

Skiing

Ski During Off-Peak Times

As I mentioned earlier, it is often cheaper to ski during the weak (i.e. during off-peak times). As the slopes aren’t as busy, ski companies are happy to sell ski lift passes at a discounted rate.

According to Lifopia.com, the cheapest days of the week are Tuesday and Wednesday, followed by Monday and Thursday.

Also, rates will be lower either side of the main winter skiing season (so in early winter and the spring).

Buy Multiday Passes

This might be an obvious tip, but if you’re planning on skiing for a few days in a row it’s a lot cheaper the buy a multiday pass than several single day passes.

Multiday passes offer a cheaper per-day rate than single day passes, and that rate generally decreases (i.e. gets cheaper) the longer the multiday pass is for. For example, an 8 day lift pass might cost $272 (at a rate of $34 per day), whereas a 9 day lift pass might cost $296 (at a rate of 32.89 per day).


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