Top tips for absolute beginners
Skiing and snowboarding are two of the few sports
families can enjoy together, regardless of age or
experience. But if you’re heading away on your
first family ski trip, take heed of Aleney De Winter’s
hottest hacks for a cool snow holiday.
1. Ski and save
If you are on a budget, save by heading to the snow early
or late in the season when cheaper lift passes and
accommodation are available. Also look out for early-bird
deals for overseas destinations.
2. Resort report
Before you book, consider whether you’d like to stay on snow
or save money by staying in a nearby town. While it may cost
a little more, staying on snow is especially advisable when
skiing with younger kids as it means more time on the
slopes, less distance to lug all your gear and you’ll always
have somewhere to go if they need a break or a nap.
3. Snow play
choosing your resort be sure to find out if other
activities like tubing, snowshoeing, sledding and
snowmobiling are on offer as these can really add to the
holiday and create wonderful memories.
4. Cool for kids
have younger members of the family, make sure there
are childcare facilities at your chosen resort and that they are
situated in a convenient and easily accessible location.
5. Chain gang
If you are driving to the snow, you’ll need to carry tyre chains.
These can be hired at most ski rental stores. You’ll find
roadside fitting bays as you approach the ski fields – just
make sure you know how to fit them before you’re stuck in
freezing snow trying to figure out how they work.
6. Be flexibe
The kids may be limber but most parents aren’t quite as
flexible, so practise plenty of lunges and squats before you
go to avoid pulling something on your first day on the slopes.
7. Schools in
A good ski school is the key to a successful
and safe family ski holiday. Not only will
lessons fast-track your kids’ snow skills, but
they’ll also provide a great opportunity for
them to socialise with other kids. It’s also
worth considering half-day lessons for
younger children, so they can rest in the
afternoon or have a little ski with the rest
of the family.
8. Hire it
From skis and boots to jackets, pants,
gloves and helmets, there’s a whole lot of
gear you’re going to need for your snow
holiday. If it’s your first time, hiring is the only
way to go. Though you can hire in your
home city, it’s a good idea to hire boots and
skis at your resort so you can have them
adjusted or switch boots if they don’t fit.
9. Head strong
Every child must wear a helmet when skiing
or snowboarding to prevent and reduce the
risk of serious head and brain injuries.
Always ensure helmets have been properly
fitted and are worn correctly for maximum
10. Shoes & socks
Hire or buy après ski boots to get around
when you’re not skiing. They’ll help keep the
kids safe from slipping on the icy surfaces,
but also keep them comfortable and toasty
warm. Put ski socks on the shopping list too,
as they’re less likely to scrunch up and
reduce the risk of misery-inducing blisters.
11. Dry it
Use the drying room at your
accommodation to keep gear dry. There’s
nothing worse than trying to wriggle into
cold, wet clothes and boots.
12. Lock it up
If you're staying off the snow, hire a locker at
the ski field so you won’t need to lug
awkward skis, poles and boots to and from
your digs each day.
13. You name it
Pack a roll of masking tape and a
permanent marker so you can label your
skis or snowboards. It’ll make it much easier
to identify them amongst the dozens of
almost identical ones piled together in the
racks outside resort facilities.
14. Snowy snacks
Pack the kids' pockets with a couple of
energy snacks to keep them going. A day on
the snow can be as exhausting as it is fun.
15. Drink it up
Remember to drink plenty of water as snow
activities can be thirsty work. The higher the
altitude, the more you need to drink.
16. Do you wanna build a snowman?
You cant go to the snow and not make a
snowman so be sure to pack an extra scarf
and a carrot, and don’t forget to snap a selfie
of the family with your frosty new pal.