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Save on Your Winter Vacation

Save Money on your VacationSaving money on a winter vacation is attainable. Let's face facts - snowsports can be pretty expensive. From the gear needed to the cost of a ticket just to get on the mountain,  it adds up. Throw in airfare for those out of state and it could almost be unaffordable.

It may seem like a huge feat, but there are ways to cut back spending once you get there. Some of the common tips are:

  • Eating: It gets pricey to grab something quick in one of the mountain houses. Even the bases can be high cost, so try to fill up in town or anywhere off the bases.
  • Renting: Although the convenience of grabbing your gear and getting right on the mountain is great, it can cost you. Rent at a shop in town or even outside of town.
  • Snacking: Pack your own snacks. Skiing/snowboarding burns a lot of calories and you don't want to get the jitters from a drop in blood sugar.
  • Hydrating: If you want something other than water, get a small bottle and manage to tuck it away in your coat. Otherwise, there are always free water stations in the mountain houses.
  • Driving: If you can carpool, do so. Save big bucks by parking in the free lot and taking the bus. If you're visiting from out of town and not staying right on the mountain, take advantage of the free bus.

If you're coming in from out-of-state, the saving can start even before you leave your home. Assuming you have some flexibility on when and where you are going, here are some rules of thumb when planning a winter excursion:

  • Plan outside of high season, which usually runs from Christmas holiday - March. Most resorts are open from mid-November until the end of April. Choose a less-popular resort.
  • Use discount airfare sites such as,,, etc. Choose larger, more popular airports. Choose weekdays rather than weekends.
  • Most resorts offer early season and late season deals on lodging and lift tickets combined. Check out the resort sites online to see what they're offering.
  • Stay away from the lodges and higher-priced hotels. Find a condo or house on during off-times and pay less than the popular all-inclusive places. You can also save money on food by getting a fully stocked condo and make some of your own meals.
  • Do some research. There are a ton of sites on the internet offering savings for travel and lodging.
  • Book in advance. A winter trip shouldn't be planned last minute. You'll save if you plan properly.

Here is a comparison of an average cost for high season opposed to early or late season in Vail:


  • Roundtrip airfare for two from Ft. Lauderdale, FL to Eagle, CO = $1200
  • Lodging at hotel in Vail Village for five nights = $1800
  • Meals in Vail Village for four days = $400
  • Rentals and lift tickets for four days = $1200
  • Total average cost is almost $5K not factoring in transportation and other miscellaneous expenses.


  • Roundtrip airfare for two from Ft. Lauderdale, FL to Denver, CO = $700
  • Lodging at condo on bus route off the mountain via for five nights = $750
  • Meals off the mountain and groceries for meals made in condo for four days = $200
  • Rentals off the mountain and lift tickets for four days = $450
  • Total average cost minus transportation and other miscellaneous expenses is almost 75% cheaper than going at the popular time.

Enjoying the slopes doesn't have to put you in debt. Plan ahead and take your time researching the internet for the right deal and you'll be surprised how much you can save.

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