Skiing December 2017

(23 Posts)
splodge2001 Fri 14-Apr-17 19:20:47

After 20 yrs of waiting I hope to be able to take my family on a skiing holiday later this year. We would go via Eurostar and would like somewhere which makes everything easy. We are all beginners and would like to have skiing lessons together - 2 adults two children aged 8 and 15. Is this possible? We'd like somewhere suitable for beginners and probably need self catering as DD has severe allergies. We're not minted so were looking for the best value option. Would it be better to book everything separately or as a package?

Blowninonabreeze Fri 14-Apr-17 19:25:59

Are you planning to go in December? Or just at some point next season?

If December, choose your resort carefully for snow coverage. For the past 2 years lots of resorts in Europe have had very little Christmas snow.

LIZS Fri 14-Apr-17 19:30:08

I'd agree. December can be very risky snow wise with short and cold days. Not ideal beginner conditions. You may also find limited number of lifts are open and resorts quiet.

PestoSwimissimos Fri 14-Apr-17 19:41:57

If you're thinking of December you'll have to go high, preferably somewhere with a glacier.

splodge2001 Fri 14-Apr-17 20:04:48

Ahh! Ok - newbie here! I was going to go for 30th December - 6th Jan. No good?

splodge2001 Fri 14-Apr-17 20:05:24

If not then Feb half term.

Blowninonabreeze Fri 14-Apr-17 20:15:02

Feb half term is generally safer. But super expensive.

We've done 2 Christmas breaks in obergurgl, Austria, which is pretty safe snow wise. But not so easy to reach via Eurostar.

rookiemere Fri 14-Apr-17 20:22:43

We have friends that go to Courcheval for that period and they seem to get ok snow. If you check through crystal then you can filter on resorts above a certain height or most snow sure.
I'd try to narrow it down to a couple of resorts and then price up doing it yourselves. Remember to factor in transfers/ car hire as they are usually quite pricey.
If you're willing to try half term or Easter hols instead then Easyjet haven't got their flights out yet - they are due out end of this month. If you know what you want and get in fast then even feb half term can be affordable.

LIZS Fri 14-Apr-17 20:52:49

NY is probably pretty entertaining but £££. This year I think there was a snowfall but not onto a good base. Later season more forgiving.

splodge2001 Fri 14-Apr-17 21:01:24

Ok so if Feb half term then what about places like Les Arcs and La Plagne? These are easily reachable by Eurostar and I don't fly. Is it possible to have lessons all together kids + adults?

HanShootsFirst Fri 14-Apr-17 21:04:18

For Easter you should go high as well. We're at Val d'Isere/Tignes now and by afternoon everything below the glacier is quite sloppy.

LIZS Fri 14-Apr-17 21:05:13

You'd have to book private lessons for the 4 of you as adult groups won't allow younger dc. You might want to check the cost. Be prepared that after a day or two the dc may need to progress faster and want to join their peers. Prebook skischool for peak weeks as resorts can be very busy and English speaking instructors already allocated to groups.

splodge2001 Fri 14-Apr-17 22:22:39

Now I'm looking at Val Thorens, Tignes and Val D'Isere. Which is the best for beginners?

rookiemere Fri 14-Apr-17 22:53:15

Easter is early next year so a bit less risky. I don't think that Tignes or Val disere particularly recommended for beginners, best thing to do is google the resorts and you should get the information fairly easily.

HanShootsFirst Sat 15-Apr-17 06:26:11

Don't know about Val Thorens but Tignes and Val d’Isère are not for nervous beginners. If your family is athletic and adventurous then it could work but there is very little beginner terrain here. Even runs that are marked green would be blue elsewhere.

Check out the Snowheads forums, lots of good info on the website.

juneau Sun 16-Apr-17 17:09:13

As a seasoned skier I would encourage you to send your kids to ski school, simply because they'll have a better time. My two (aged 9 and 6) love being with kids their own age and ski school is good fun. Once you're all competent skiers it can be nice to have a family ski, but for lessons I would get an instructor for the adults and let your kids join ski school, unless there are specific reasons why that wouldn't work.

juneau Sun 16-Apr-17 17:10:45

PS. Val Thorens is not really a beginner's resort. Not sure what the SC situation is either - there never used to be a supermarket there - but maybe there is now? I haven't been for a few years, so I might be wrong.

lampygirl Mon 17-Apr-17 19:49:56

I'd look at easter. We are pretty hardy and will ski in most things, but have decided we arent going to bother with Xmas and NY in resort this year as even in Saas Fee which is a village at 1800m and skiing up to approx 3600m the snow has been pretty dire for the last couple of years and we are sticking to Mid March, which does drop us to one trip this year but reduces the chance of having a week on an ice rink.

Possibly also consider self drive if you won't fly. This gives you the option to get to supermarkets lower down the valleys etc rather than paying the resort premium and may give you a better choice of DC need more specific diets.

HanShootsFirst Mon 17-Apr-17 22:55:50

Problem with Easter is high likelihood of no snow or mashed potatoes, esp on lower beginner pistes. In Val d’Isère last week the only good snow by noon was on the glacier.

SkiBike007 Thu 20-Apr-17 18:32:17

Les Gets an hour from Geneva, is lower altitude so less snow sure but fine if half term. It's excellent for beginners as lift tickets cost less as you really don't need a massive multi mtn pass when learning. We've been two years in a row and kids and DH were beginners. 360 international were good for lessons. If you booking 6day lessons they give you a reduced rate voucher to get your lift pass even cheaper. Lots self catering options have a look at GroupLB rental agents in the town they have an internet search page with lots local apartments we used them twice with no issues booking apartments. You can walk all around town so no need for a car once in resort.

nightswimming1 Fri 21-Apr-17 19:51:55

I've been a beginner in Val d'Isere and it's absolutely fine - good in fact. So long as you accept you need to download from Solaise on the chair or Bellevarde on the Olympique gondola, there is heaps of brilliant green/blue really Accessible terrain and because you are up high the snow is good (I was always there at Easter). You just can't ski back to the resort without being a decent intermediate but this never bothered me!

nightswimming1 Fri 21-Apr-17 19:53:37

I do concede however the received wisdom is that Val isn't good for beginners!

Bamboobeanbags Fri 21-Apr-17 22:11:40

As beginners, I would recommend looking at a pre-christmas holiday. It is cheaper and so much quieter than other school holiday weeks. You do have to balance that with a risk of poor snow, but most mid sized resorts have extensive snow canon coverage these days and are able to get a variety of slopes open early in the season despite the conditions.

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