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6. Look for Deals and Coupons in Local Newspapers

Ski resorts love distant visitors but they also cater to the locals. There is a local secret that you may have never heard off. Very often there are special deals advertised in the local press. The idea is that the resorts want to attract the locals and reward them with discounted rates. At the same time they don't want to advertise too boldly so people like you who are already committed to visiting can take advantage of the savings.

More frequently you'll find such information online. The problem is the some of these ads are last minute deals or limited time offers so by the time they get picked up by Google they may already be expired. In the past I've been more successful with local newspapers from ski towns at my home public library. For example if you are going to Utah resorts try to get a hold of local press from Salt Lake City. You ought to be able to find it in a large public library. Just don't get caught cutting out coupons at the library.

I'll name some other examples. There may be a promotion at a local grocery store chain that will give you a hefty ski pass discount when you spend a certain amount on the groceries. Or there could be a gas station or a sports store having a similar promotion. Several times I've seen promotions that don't require you spend a dime! You just show up and buy a deeply discounted ticket.

7. Consider Off the Beaten Path Resorts

Smaller resorts can be just as exciting as their better known brethren. If you travel to places like Colorado or Utah expect to pay premium at big name ski resorts. The lesser known hills may be every bit as good at a cheaper rate. After all they all share the same snow and weather. The lift lines may even be shorter at a small tucked away resort and a friendly local may show you some hidden treasures.

8. Study Airport to Resort Transportation Options

If you fly to a distant resort and ground transportation is not included in your package it pays to do some homework first.

Most resorts have a very efficient and often free shuttle bus network within the town. Once you arrive you're discouraged from driving your rental car. This means that the rental car will sit unused for a number of days. While this is great because you're not burning gas you're still paying the rental company for the privilege of parking their car in the condo garage.

Before you leave home investigate airport to resort transportation options. Buses can be cheaper than rental cars depending on the cost and the number of days you'd be renting the car. If you're lucky to stay in a fancy condo check to see if there is a free airport to condo shuttle.

If you're young, single and adventurous look at the resort's online forum. Many have rideshare and employee pages. Employees need to travel too and may be willing to split a car rental cost. I have done this several times. Just play it safe and trust your instincts.

In case you opt for a rental car consider the hidden cost of getting stuck in the snow. Many resorts are generally easy to drive to but when it snows you could be in trouble. Rental companies generally do not allow you to use snow chains. Resort online forum will have lots of information on driving in stormy conditions.

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