Planning any kind of trip or outing for a large group can be a difficult task. Planning a group ski trip for a bunch of people, however, can prove to be very stressful and time-consuming. It’s not just about picking the location, planning how to get there and finding the perfect lodging. Planning a ski trip also requires transportation of gear, shuttles from the airport to your lodge, renting gear, lift tickets, meal planning and more. Here are some tips for making the planning stage of your trip much easier.
- Find Lodging Early
When it comes to your large group trip, finding ideal lodging can make or break the experience. If you wait too long to book, you may end up having to split the group up. Look for a place that is close to town and mountain access. Check to see if your destination has any public transportation. Breckenridge, for example, has a well-developed free bus system that ends up at the base of the gondola to peak 7 and 8. It also makes stops close to many private residences and lodges that would be more than able to accomodate a large group.
- Book all Transportation at Once
Found a great deal on airfare? Might as well go ahead and plan all of your transportation so you can focus on the fun items. If you are planning your trip for Colorado, you will most likely be flying into Denver Airport, which will require shuttling to your final destination. Many shuttle companies, including Peak 1 Express, offer group discounts and private shuttles at fantastic rates. You can travel from Denver Airport to Vail for as low as $47 a person on our private sprinters, equipped with wi-fi for the duration of your trip!
- Check for Group Discounts on Lift Tickets
Many ski resorts offer discounts on lift tickets for large groups, which can account for some huge savings! Resorts under the Vail Resorts umbrella, including Breckenridge, Vail, Keystone and more, offer group discounts starting at 20+ people. At Arapahoe Basin, your group qualifies for group rates at 15+ people, and at Copper Mountain you need 20+. Don’t wait until your trip begins to look for group discounts! Contact a sales agent from the resort early to find out about all of your savings opportunities.
- Find Restaurants That Take Reservations
A big difference between planning a group trip to a ski town and a big destination is size. Most ski towns are very small and, therefore, have less restaurants than you would find if you decided to take your group to Miami, for example. Many of the restaurants in these towns love to accomodate large groups, they just need a little heads-up. Find the best restaurants in town that accept reservations and make your plans early! Otherwise, you could be waiting for over 2 hours just to sit down for a few slices of pizza.
- Rent Your Gear From a Mom-and-Pop Shop
The small-town gear rental shops in town are sure to have lower rates than the resort rental shop. Sure, the resort shop will boast slopeside service, storage options and group deals, however, the small shops in town tend to offer even better group rates, will happily store or deliver your gear and will give you more personalized attention based on your abilities. Check online to find the best rental shop at your destination, then give them a call and let them know to expect you!
Once you’ve checked these items off your list, you will be able to sit back, relax and focus on counting down the days until your winter vacation. The more you plan ahead, the better you will feel when your travel day arrives. If you have any questions about planning your trip or transportation, give our trip specialists a call at 855-467-3251.