Right, all booked! Got Ryanair flights with luggage and seat reservations, hotel transfers, 2 large double hotel rooms with full board for the kids, full day childcare for DC3, ski courses, and generous half board for us for £3500, which I think is pretty competitive. I am beside myself with excitement.
New Year is the absolute peak week of the season for most euro ski hotels unfortunately. Very many of them will be full. But am sure it is doable. I would definitely ditch tour ops amd opt for independent - it sounds as if you don't need childcare which makes things easier.
I would start by looking at flights - see where you can get to reasonably and go from there. Some handy but usually cheaper airports are: Linz ( eastern salzburgerland); nuremberg - bit further out but ditto; Zurich is sometimes not too bad price-wise; possibly verona or Venice treviso for dolomite resorts; Munich for salzburgerland and tyrol; Klagenfurt for Carinthia. With 5 bodies flights is going to be a major cost.
I have spent the evening trying to find a ski holiday departing just after Christmas for a week, preferably in the Alps, but the only thing I can find are megabucks holidays. I was wondering if anyone has any inspiring ideas about unusual Alpine places to go with reasonably priced hotels? I'll be taking DC1 (15, good skier) DC2 (12, beginner) DC3 (ski refusenik) and DH (Beginner, wants to spend a lot of the holiday sleeping apparently).