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Do I sit tight and wait till the last minute for a ski holiday or take a £100 off "bargin" now

(11 Posts)
VivaLeBeaver Thu 02-Dec-10 17:51:36

I have a week off in mid Jan so we have to go that week. I need want a catered chalet. Not bothered where, but ideally France and well located with in the resort.

Normally book early with Esprit, they have some offers of £100 off per person. Which isn't a bargin as when booking this late you have to pay for coco club and ski carriage so will work out the same as if we'd booked in July.

Will there be more bargains nearer the time?

greygirl Fri 03-Dec-10 11:26:34

i think there will be more nargains because mid jan is low season, as long as you don't mind where you go. if you have somewhere specific, or you are a non-standard family (ie not 2 adults, 2 kids) it might be trickier. the benefit of waiting of course is you can book where the snow is, rather than hoping.

orienteerer Fri 03-Dec-10 13:57:48

Wait until after Christmas

mary21 Fri 03-Dec-10 17:37:47

I would wait. + look at other kid friendly companies not just esprit. There seems to lots of Xmas deals this year so i am sure there will be january deals. if you go with esprit its worth getting your skis independantly as We have found Esprit to be very expensive for ski hire

CaurnieBred Fri 03-Dec-10 20:55:04

We found that Le Ski in La Tania were offering very good deals for the January dates closer to the time. Don't know ages of your kids but they do have a creche and will collect kids from the ESF.

natation Sat 04-Dec-10 08:29:34

Catered chalet and bargain don't exactly sit well together, it's generally the most expensive way to have a ski holiday. If bargain is what you are after, I certainly wouldn't concentrate on a particular package company such as Esprit, I'd make us of google and other search engines which lead you to websites which collate chalet holidays with many different companies and independant chalets. If it's France you are interested in, nearly all resorts have child care, you can get return flights for less than £50 a head, easily less than £100, transfers to the Chamonix valley from Geneva for example cost only €50 per head, ski hire from a local shop, check resorts which do package ski passes for families. This is of course far more leg-work for you but you can put together your own chalet package alot cheaper than the big companies such as Esprit. Yes I'd certainly wait if going in January, possibly the only thing I would not wait for is if I were booking my own flights.

VivaLeBeaver Sat 04-Dec-10 10:45:56

Thanks for the advice, I'll sit tight for now. I'm happy to go with a different company ratehr than Esprit, it doesn't have to be child friendly as long as DD is allowed in the chalet!

I don't mind doing the accomadation seperate to the flights. We have done this once before when we went to Chamnonix. DH is muttering about driving down which I'm not so keen on.

natation Sat 04-Dec-10 12:39:49

How about flying with Easyjet to Geneve? Cost for 2 adults and 1 child mid January would be around £160 return. Transfers with a company called "ChamExpress" would be £126 return.

There's a luxury catered chalet in our current favourite resort Les Houches (a satellite resort of Chamonix with own area pass or part MBU area which includes Cham, Argentiere, Vallorcine, Courmayeur, Verbier), This luxury chalet is a few minutes walk or 30 second ski to the main ski bubble of the resort, is also the meeting point for ESF. The cost for 6 days 16-22 jan (6 days due to Christmas/New Year falling on weekend, chalet returning to Sun chageover) is £538 per person, perhaps there is a chlid reduction, says in-chalet child care available, but the very cheap communal gardere is again only a few minute's walk and collects and drops off at ESF too. A 6 days ski pass for Les Houches for 2 adults and 1 child is only £320. Ski hire for 6 days. 2 adults and 1 child, from the ski shop opposite the main ski bubble is from only £120.

Travel for 2 adults and 1 child could cost you therefore as little as £286 return from Gatwick to the Chamonix area. Buses and trains are free throughout the area, so not sure if a self-drive would be cost-effective there.

A luxury chalet could cost you £1614 for 3 for 6 nights, but you could get something even cheaper than that. A self-catering chalet would be a third of the price in the same area.

Ski passes and ski hire could cost as little as £480, less if the child is under 5 years old.

VivaLeBeaver Sat 04-Dec-10 15:50:02

£538 per person is more expensive than Esprit. They already have prices for £599 each inc flights and transfers. And they do child reductions.

SpiderWilliam Sat 04-Dec-10 15:56:48

Wait until after New Year. I was a rep and the January weeks were by far the quietest. As a client I have travelled in January on half price deals but booked the week before travel.

Are you familiar with the website "If you ski"? It's a good place for tracking the discounts for lots of the chalet tour operators both small and large.

Have a great holiday smile

orienteerer Sat 04-Dec-10 20:03:42

Pre DS we always skied in Jan and never booked until last minute, always good deals.

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