We’ve tried to cover what might be different on your ski holiday this winter in other articles in this section, but there are a few other things to keep in mind for this season.
Your Space On The Slopes
Most of the ski areas that have opened in the southern hemisphere over the summer and the few that have in the northern hemisphere have had restrictions on the number of people allowed on their slopes. This has meant people booking their space on the slopes online in advance. One resort in Colorado was so popular when it re-opened it organised a daily lottery to win the chance to buy one of the few ski passes available. All this doesn’t mean there’s any likelihood anyone buying a tour operator package to a major resort in the Alps will find they can’t ski as the tickets are sold out when they get there, but it’s worth keeping in mind. In most resorts lift pass holders (rather than day arrivals) were given priority for space available.
Read the Small Print
It’s always good advice to read the small print of course if only we all had the time and it was easy to understand. This winter though it’s worth trying to scan through what your rights are if resorts close and borders close. We’ve found a wide range of response scenarios from different resorts and insurance companies. Generally, from the resorts, the terms are much more generous than normal as they want to secure bookings but we’ve noticed, for example, a resort in one skiing nation saying that if their government closes things down it’s a full refund, but if they’re operating normally but the UK closes the border, that’s your problem.
We’ve had the impact of Brexit hanging over us for years now and so far not a lot has changed. But that’s because the UK and the EU have kept ‘kicking the can of change’ down the road and putting off the crunch moment when we have to either abide by EU rules, or go it alone, or there’s some ‘final fudge’. The current ‘final crunch date’ is 31st December and whilst we know previous crunch dates have come and gone without much change, this one might be different, or not.
What to be aware of if we leave without any deal? Well, there may be border delays and legal rights may change which could affect things like borders, insurance, driving requirements if you’re self-driving and possibly many other things.
Ski-School and Nursery
Unfortunately, we’re seeing an increasing number of creche and nursery facilities in ski resorts saying they’ll be closed this winter due to pandemic concerns. Ski schools are also increasingly saying there won’t be group lessons, only private classes for the same reason. That’s not the case everywhere and there are lots of innovative approaches being unveiled to try to get around the issues, but it’s something to be aware of and check before you book a particular resort if these are something you’re going to rely on.
Images © Mt Hutt