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DIY ski holiday - what do I need to book?

(11 Posts)
aweewhilelonger Tue 31-Oct-17 15:15:31

Hi, ski holiday novice here.

We already live in France, not far from the Alps, but we've never splashed out on a ski holiday. We've got two boys, DS age 10 who has had two ski trips with the school and DS age 7 who's a total novice. Our aim is to have them both on skis by the end of the week. DH skis, he's planning to make the most of the mornings by himself and practice with the boys in the afternoon (if they are up for it). I've had a few lessons, but I'm not fussed TBH - I'm happy with a book and a hot drink.

If we don't go for a package - and since travel is not an issue, we can be there in an hour or two - what do I need to book for a DIY holiday? So far I've come up with:

Accommodation - the closer to the lifts the better
Ski school - lessons for the boys
Ski gear - for all the skiers
Ski lift passes - I'm a bit confused by this. Will the boys need lift passes if they are in ski school at the beginner level? I think DS age 10 will nearly be ready to hit the slopes proper at some point. And for DH - if he's practising with them on the baby / lower slopes, will he need any kind of pass?

Is there anything else I need to book (other than a spa for me ;-))?

And is DIY any cheaper than a package? Though it'll be a French package, not sure if they are the same as UK ones.

Thanks from a novice. We're looking at Les 2 Alpes, Val d'Isere / Tignes, and it'll have to be during the French school holidays which start 10 February for us.

CaurnieBred Tue 31-Oct-17 15:23:39

Lift passes are the main one. If you go to Val/Tignes you can get a pass just for either the Val side or the Tignes side, or for the entire area. Obviously, the more area you want to cover, the more expensive it is. If your DH is planning on bombing about in the morning, he would probably need the full area pass.

Which ski school do you plan to book the boys into? You should speak to them with regards to the area pass they will need. You might not need much of one for DS2 - maybe towards the end of the week, but the school would tell you.

Where do you plan to park? Will the accommodation have parking? If not, you should investigate the cost of indoor v outdoor parking.

You say DIY - does that mean self cater, or hotel/chalet?

LIZS Tue 31-Oct-17 15:24:25

Whether they need lift passes will depend on the resort, often beginners' lifts are covered by a more limited pass and children sometimes get free access, especially off peak.

aweewhilelonger Tue 31-Oct-17 15:25:45

By DIY I mean booking accommodation, lessons etc all separately with the providers / Air BnB etc, rather than taking a package deal.

And yes, happy to self-cater.

Mary21 Tue 31-Oct-17 18:28:57

Booking skis online can usually save you £££ also I believe a French decathlon card can offer some discount on ski hire.
If you go to Espace Killy don’t book a lift pass for your youngest as they will probably use the free lifts for the first few days and the instructors will tell you when to get lift passes. I imagine a 10 year old with 2 weeks skiing under his belt will be bombing around with his dad in no time. And will probably need a lift pass from day one. If by 2 ski trips you mean 2 days skiing he maybe on the free lifts for the first day or so but not long at all.
Have fun

Mary21 Tue 31-Oct-17 18:32:51

Meant to add you can often find a discount code for alpin resorts (ski hire) on line

NHSparent Tue 31-Oct-17 18:38:21

They are likely to need lift passes if they are in ski school but you might be best to wait and see what the instructor says.

DIY ski holiday booking is much cheaper. I booked ours on Sunday for February half term. Costing just over £2600 for four of us including flights, lift passes skis, poles, boots helmets, all food and all drinks including alcohol. No lessons though since DH and the DC are good and I just potter about and am really happier reading and people watching. You'll get it much lower than that if you don't need flights and are doing airbnb and self catering.

aweewhilelonger Tue 31-Oct-17 19:25:00

Wow NHS that is a good price... I had a look at a package (Ski Planet) and it's 1700€ for the four of us, including lessons, passes and gear hire for the boys and dad, but no food or drink. And no flights, as you say, though parking is included.

NHSparent Tue 31-Oct-17 19:45:31

If you're looking at Tignes and your Ds1 has been twice before with school you'll definitely need a lift pass for him. The nursery slope in Tignes is very handy in that its right in the village but it will soon get boring for him going up and down it dodging the little ones all the way. It will also be very busy in the school holidays (it's quite narrow and is busy for learners even outside the holidays) and so your DS2 will be better off learning on the slopes after a day or two on the nursery slopes. Personally I'm not a fan of Tignes for real beginners since to get to nice easy slopes is a bit tricky (although kids are often fearless anyway).

cestlavielife Tue 31-Oct-17 23:59:04

You could look at Pierre et vacances for accommodation . apartments on the ski slopes

rookiemere Wed 01-Nov-17 13:52:41

I’d check out what ski school options are available for your 7 yr old. ESF classes tend to be very big - fine for the 10 yr old who can ski- but depending on your younger DSs personality and style of learning he may feel more comfortable in a smaller class.

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