Tips for planning a family friendly ski trip

Tips for planning a family friendly ski trip

With the snow gods smiling down on the northern hemisphere this time of year, it is time to start planning one of the best parts of the season – family ski trips. Whether this is your first time hitting the slopes together, or a yearly family tradition, there are a few things to keep in mind to keep the whole family happy as you head out.


The first thing you will need to consider is where you want to ride. Each resort will be slightly different in what they have to offer, so do your research before you make your selection. When looking around, consider the availability of the following benefits:


  • group and private lessons, especially those geared toward children

  • free or discounted tickets (for both children and adults)

  • availability of equipment rentals

  • kids clubs or day care programs

  • activities available off the slopes


The following resorts have been listed by multiple sources as family friendly, so take these into consideration as you make your plans:


  • Beaver Creek, CO

  • Big Sky, MT

  • Breckenridge, CO

  • Bretton Woods, NH

  • Grand Targhee, WY

  • Heavenly, CA

  • Killington, VT

  • Northstar-at-Tahoe, CA

  • Park City, UT

  • Solitude, UT

  • Smugglers Notch, VT

  • Sugarloaf, ME


Now that you have a location selected for your winter outing, consider the following tips:


Book Early: Depending on the time of year you are going, resorts can be busy and even fill up. If you are going away or plan on hitting the slopes during a busy time of the year (such as during the holidays), book everything you can ahead of time.


Lessons: Whether or not you are an experienced skier or boarder, sign your family up for lessons, at least for half of the day. This will give them a chance to receive professional instruction in a safe, controlled environment without the potential drama of family dynamics. You can either sign up for lessons yourself or enjoy a kid free morning and then have them show off what they learned when you get back together.


Equipment: If your children do not own their own equipment, or equipment that fits them correctly, look into rentals. Properly fitting equipment will make all the difference in your children enjoying the experience. If you are looking to purchase their equipment, look into skis or snowboards with fun designs like these Never Summer snowboards. Along with skis or snowboards, make sure your kids have snow pants, long socks, a good winter coat, waterproof gloves, a hat (or even better, a helmet) and goggles. Take the time to add a layer of waterproofing to give the clothing an extra layer of protection.


Rentals: If you know where you are going to be heading, do a little research to compare rental prices at the resort versus off the mountain. Occasionally, you can find package deals with rentals and lessons or lift passes that may make the difference for you. Keep in mind that while off the mountain stores may save you money, the luxury of not having to transport the equipment on and off the mountain can be convenient if you have young children.


Layers: One tip that will help you to be comfortable is to make sure everyone dresses in layers. It is a lot easier to remove an extra sweater or scarf than to be miserably cold. However, be sure to only wear one pair of socks! This will help the boots to fit properly. You can purchase warmers that can go both in gloves and in boots to help keep toes and fingers warm.


Meeting Place: Once you get to the resort, select a meeting place for the family to reconvene should you get separated or the older children want to go try a different part of the park. Safety first!


Don’t Overschedule: Many mountain resorts have a lot more to offer than just what’s on the slopes. Especially if you are away from home, leave time for your family to enjoy the other activities available or maybe get in some extra slope time.



Skiing and snowboarding is admittedly a more expensive hobby and can start adding up quickly when you take more members of your family. If you are looking to watch your wallet a little bit closer, try some of these money saving tips:


  • Pack lunches and snacks rather than purchasing food on site. Be aware of areas of the resort that may not allow for picnic lunches.

  • Plan to hit the slopes on off-peak times of the season, or keep your eye out for deals before making plans.

  • If you can, go midweek as it tends to be less crowded and there are more options for deals and coupons.

  • Utilize the hot deals available on resort and ski area sites (such as Ski Utah).

  • Some resorts offer free lift tickets for children up to a certain age.


Giving your children the chance to experience winter in the mountains is an experience they are not likely to forget. By following these tips you and your family can enjoy quality time together and create memories you will talk about for years to come.


You might also like:

how to keep kids warm and dry during the winter

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    MyMommyStyle Meet Camille

    Hello! I am Camille, a wife, mother of four, Disney obsessed, certified teacher, and reality optimist. Motherhood comes with its ups and downs, and I hope while you're here you'll find something that makes your #momlife easier!


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