The past few days have seen countries including Austria, France and Italy extending the period during which their governments are preventing the resumption of ski holidays – either by keeping ski slopes closed or only allowing local people to ski.
On top of that travellers from the UK are currently particularly unwelcome outside our borders anyway, with England being believed to be the epicentre of the outbreak of the new strain of COVID 19. This means many countries have additional restrictions or outright bans on travellers from the UK.
So when will things improve and will we be able to ski at all this season?
The truth is that at this point nobody knows.
You can however still book a holiday with most holiday companies for later this season, and if you do most will guarantee either the option to switch it to another date next season or get a refund if it is not possible to travel when the date arrives (although it is of course vital you’re clear that’s an option in all scenarios when you book).
A spokesperson for the UK’s largest operator, Crystal, told us, “Current booking patterns suggest that customers are more confident about next season with sales for winter 21/22 up significantly. This is not just customers transferring their holidays, but also new bookings being made. We are still taking bookings for this Easter though, and will review and update customers in line Government advice.”
A small number of ski holiday companies, including Interski and le Ski, have however decided that the ongoing uncertainty has left them no real choice but to cancel all trips until next winter, but most will still sell you a holiday later this winter at present.
Another ski travel company spokesperson, who wished to remain anonymous, said,
“It’s hard to find much in the way of positivity for this season. Back in early December, before mutant strains and further lockdowns, it felt like we had a fighting chance of getting some skiers away through the second half of the winter, but currently the challenges for Brits in getting there look formidable for this winter. We’ve not thrown the towel in yet though, and if windows of opportunity open up, we’re well placed to do something with it.”
Image credit Fede Roveda.