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Skiing on a Budget

10 Commandments of Cheap Skiing and Snowboarding

Winter sports are very popular in the U.S. but the conventional wisdom tells us that skiing and snowboarding are not getting any cheaper. Because of the high cost they are seen as elitist activities similar to yachting or equestrian sports. The truth is that skiing and snowboarding require a huge amount of expensive infrastructure and will never be as cheap as let's say street basketball. But you don't need to make a six figure salary in order to ski inexpensively.

There was only a brief period of time when I could not afford to go skiing while in college. But even during those dry years I managed to go to the slopes every now and then by setting skiing as one of my top priorities. My intention is not to change your priorities. I'm sure you're well aware that curtailing frivolous expenses may save you just enough money to enjoy weeks of skiing and snowboarding.

Instead I will show you how to save tons of money and make a ski trip affordable. These ten commandments of cheap skiing are all tried and tested techniques. I regularly use any combination of them to maximize the number of ski days each season.

Now with 20% extra! Yes you heard it right! Not ten but twelve commandments of cheap skiing are here free of charge so let's get started.


1. Join a Ski Club

Most ski clubs are as fun as geriatric wards but if it saves me a buck or two I'll play along. The thing is that ski clubs organize all inclusive ski trips with undeniable fiscal benefits. For an inexplicable reason winter resorts like ski clubs and at often offer discounts. These discounts are then passed onto the members.

It's a curious thing because a low end travel operator probably brings in far more guests than a ski club ever will but resorts still like the clubs. Maybe it's a thing of the past. But before it's faded out of sight like leather ski boots please investigate the opportunity.

Compare the cost of annual membership versus the savings. I've seen some clubs that still offer discounts to non-members if you pay what amounts to a "trip fee.

2. January is the Cheapest Month

January tends to be a slow month in North America. People party for the new years, everyone is too drunk to get out on the snow the first week of the year and before you know it a couple of big storms dump a ton of snow and you just don't feel like going out at all.

Did someone say "dump?" January tends to be a stormy month and most people stay away from the slopes. Good skiing is intricately connected to snowfall which in turn is a product of snowstorms. Using this logic one could argue that January is the best month to ski and I agree.

I don't want to scare you away by mentioning storms. The actual weather patterns depend on more than just calendar month but January seems to have more snowy days than other months. This doesn't mean that there will be a blizzard every day.

Because people tend to stay away in January many resorts and travel agents will offer discounts. This is great news for me because I get more deep powder skiing days in January than any other month.

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