Skiing Holidays With Kids

If you’re like us and love your winter sports, taking a ski holiday with the kids has turned into a different kettle of fish. It’s not only become twice as expensive, but there’s a lack of time for apres ski and staying out on the slopes until the last lift has shut is just not as appealing.

Well don’t worry, we are here to help. Both Charlotte and Ellen have been on a ski holiday already this winter and wanted to share their tips on accommodation, flights, transfers, childcare, ski lessons and some ways to save money to make a winter holiday feel like a holiday!

All inclusive versus chalet package

This all depends on the age of your children and the time of year you are going. If you are going in the school holidays or all your children are of an age to start skiing ,then all inclusive is the way forward. Most companies include flights, transfers, accommodation, food, drink, ski hire, ski passes, ski lessons for kids, entertainment for kids and a creche on site for childcare.

You might not get the cosy, Alpine, around the fire kind of experience but if you go with friends, you can make it your own experience as well as saving an awful lot of money!

Good companies that have been tried and tested:
Club Med
Mark Warner
Ski Esprit

If you have under 3 year olds, going out of season and/or going with a group of friends, then sometimes the chalet holiday experience can be cheaper and more relaxing.

You can negotiate some really good off peak rates, share childcare costs (e.g. share a nanny between two families) and not worry so much if your baby isn’t sleeping too well as you can have dinner and keep checking on them.

Charlotte and Ellen opted for the chalet experience a couple of years ago and it was the best holiday they have had since their first children were born. The nanny came in every morning, they went skiing for the day with a lovely lunch, got back for afternoon tea, while the boys were being fed. They even had time to have a sauna and shower etc. before doing bath and bedtime with their boys. This was a real treat after 8 months of doing everything and never getting a break!

Good companies that have been tried and tested:
Gourmet Ski
Chilly Powder
Family Ski

What you need for the kids:

Thermals are the most important items you need for the kids.

Marks and Spencers do a great range and you will need vests, long sleeve tops, long johns and fleece jumpers.

Socks are worth spending money on, you don’t want complaints of cold feet! Blacks, Snow & Rock, Cotwold Outdoor etc will have these for kids.

For Outer gear it is well worth looking into second hand as at the rate they grow, it’s not worth the expense. For the under 2’s an all in one is recommended  and for those that are potty trained, get a two piece as it’s much easier and you can use the jacket as their winter jacket that year.

If ski hire isn’t included in your package, then book online before you go, same with ski lessons. You can get up to 50% off packages and all children’s packages come with ski helmets.

Ski Passes; if these aren’t included in your package then do some research into which resorts offer deals on buying an adults full price and get children’s half price etc before even booking the holiday. Remember a ski pass is now EUR250+ which soon ads up for a whole family.

Ski Helmets if you don’t have one, get one! Especially after Michael Schumachers accident, they keep you really warm and safety is key.

Eye wear; for kids under 4 get sunglasses as they are more likely to wear them and they fit better. Remember get glasses that are UV protective, especially important for the young ones on the snow.

Fly or Drive:

We have done both and due to the price of fuel, toll charges etc they now work out roughly the same. To drive from London to the base of the Alps will cost roughly £500 for a round trip.

Start the holiday as you mean to go on. Do you really want to be driving 12hrs + there and back with screaming kids in the car? I know I don’t, so we always fly now as once in the resort you never need your car.

Trains from Clapham Junction are quick and cheap, we have done it with 2 x luggage bags, 2 x ski equipment bags, 2 x cabin bags and a buggy! For the 5mins of stress getting on and off the train you save a lot of money with fuel and car parking fees. If you know you and your husband might have a divorce in trying to attempt this then drive and use Meteor Car Parking, they meet you at the terminal, take your car, park it and then deliver it back to arrivals when you land and all for about £60 per week! VIP service without the price tag and well worth it.

Winter holidays are always the most expensive, but if you spend some time researching all the deals out there you can save yourself a lot of money.

Hope this helps you enjoy your next one.