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Lone parent ski holidays

(17 Posts)
MollieO Mon 12-Jan-09 22:19:48

I posted this in the lone parent section but thought it may get a response here.

Having just returned from my first ski holiday as a lone parent I'd welcome some input on ways of improving our experience for next year.

I took my 4 yr old ds on a chalet holiday. He loved the skiing and the childcare and enjoyed playing with the other children but I had very mixed experiences with the other guests. Everyone in the chalet except me was part of a couple and they were very coupley couples iykwim. I ended up having to sit down first at the dinner table so the couples could sit next to each other. The two times I sat down at the same time I was asked to move to accommodate couples who wanted to sit next to each other shock.

The chalet wasn't large and there were only 11 adults including me but the whole experience left me wondering if there is a better alternative. I chose this type of holiday partly because of the excellent childcare but also because I knew my ds would be sleeping upstairs whilst I was having dinner and could pop downstairs to see me if he woke.

I had hoped that I'd meet people in the chalet to ski with but that didn't happen so I ended up booking group lessons for some social contact.

Has anyone had good experiences of doing a chalet holiday sharing with people they don't know and if so what made the difference?

toomanyprojects Mon 12-Jan-09 22:35:50

Hi MolliO,
I saw your post on another thread and am sorry you had such a horrid time socially in the chalet.
We have been 4 times and it really seems to be the luck of the draw. One time we went in quite a big chalet but about half the people had come as one group and I remember them wanting to sit altogether - there was one long table and we all had to move up and then the ones in the middle (at the edge of the "group" turned their chairs at an angle away from the "rest" of us!

Maybe try coming on the ski boards on here and finding a few other people going to the same place in advance?

Hopefully the next time you'll have more luck - I remember our first yr we all decided to swop chairs every night and I deliberately sat nowhere near my other half!

TheRealMrsJohnSimm Mon 12-Jan-09 22:40:08

Mollie, I haven't any real advice from a single parent perspective but am shocked at you being asked to move etc for couples. Seems petty and childish that couples cannot bear to be parted for a whole meal hmm.

Last year, we had a single parent in our chalet but he was totally included in all meals and any plans to ski out together the next day - don't ever remember him being asked to move or excluded from any activities. As I type this, I can't help but wonder if the problem was that you were a lone female rather than male. Perhaps there were some very insecure and shallow bitches women in your chalet??

MollieO Mon 12-Jan-09 23:21:07

I did meet other people to ski with from my lesson (a fellow MNetter as it turned out!) but I did have a bit of hard time in the chalet. I do wonder if it was a male/female thing. Not everyone was unpleasant but there were two out of the four couples who were (just realised there were 9 adults not 11!).

Couldn't work out what the issue was until the last night but think I discovered it when we were discussing tipping - I wanted to so started a conversation about what we should do. It was then suggested by one of the women to tip an amount 'per family' which I was happy to do and made no comment (even though of course my family was half the size). She then said that their holiday cost more than mine (no idea why as we weren't discussing it). Well of course as there were 4 of them! Very odd comment but it fitted in with the comments during the week - boasting several times about flying business class hmm and what dh did for a living.

They never asked what I did for a living but it appears they spent the week wondering how I could afford the holiday! I think I'm a pretty open and friendly person and reasonably thick-skinned but even I was glad to get to the end of the week. The real bonus was my ds enjoying his first experience of skiing and is very keen to go again. I also met some lovely people from other chalets so enjoyed my days if not my evenings smile.

TheRealMrsJohnSimm Mon 12-Jan-09 23:56:43

Sounds as if she was definitely very bitchy insecure tbh if she feels the need to go on about how much hols cost/what DH does etc.

Glad DS had a great time and that you managed to find some respite!

katiekittlemouse Tue 13-Jan-09 11:23:08

MollieO sorry to hear about your experience.

At Christmas there was a loan parent, a dad with 2 kids at our chalethotel in France. In the evenings at dinner, he would join different tables each evening and was always welcomed by the various groups/couples. I hardly ever saw him on his own.... maybe a chalethotel would be a better option for you. Everyone was so friendly - you could either sit in couples in the dining room, or in groups and we mixed and matched as did the other guests.

jicky Tue 13-Jan-09 20:03:59

My Dh took our two oldest boys to a chalet last Feb and certainly didn't find this problem - but then the group weren't all couples - there was at least one pair of female friends for example.

He didn't want to ski with the others (since he was skiing with the boys) but they fell asleep by about 7:30 and he certainly didn't spend the evenings feeling excluded.

MrsGuyOfChristmasBorn Tue 13-Jan-09 21:08:04

sad you had this experience, because as a 'lone parent' for the purposes of ski holidays, I have always had very posisitve experiences, and not come across couples wanting to sit together - how weird! I prefer chalet hols for the same reason you chose - adults to talk to in the evenings, and children safely in an adjoining room. I have just returned from a fantastic hol with SkiBeat, where there were two couples, with a child each, and two men who had come together without children, and we had a brilliant week, interesting conversations, very relaxed and friendly atsmosphere. And have been lucky on previous similar chalet hols with Mark Warner, Ski Esprit and Lotus Superski. Please don't give up - is deffo better that sitting alone in a hotel dining room, and hoping the children are okay upstairs in the room, and then retiring to bed after dinner, or sitting in the bar...

MollieO Wed 14-Jan-09 10:42:48

I wonder if I might be better off booking a ski holiday that offers childcare rather than one that was totally family focused? Skibeat sounds excellent. I think a mix of friends, couples, singles sounds perfect and would mean I wouldn't be billy no-mates every day! Spoke to a friend who has just returned from a ski hotel holiday. Sounds fab but her dc ate every night in the restaurant with her and dh and ended up going to bed after 10pm. Too late for my ds and frankly I need a bit of me time in the evenings!

RockinSockBunnies Wed 14-Jan-09 17:45:25

I'm off next month skiing in Romania with DD. We're travelling with Mango Holidays, specifically for lone parents. I've heard good things, so I'll report back and let you know!

MarinaIvy Mon 31-Jan-11 14:16:39

I've only just stumbled across this board, so please forgive the two-years-on posting.

I'm looking for a skiing weekend/long weekend for single parents. I want to take my (currently, 10-month old) later this season, and would vastly prefer the Austrian alps to the French or elsewhere.

By way of background, I'm not normally a single parent. But, alas, Daddy loathes skiing and cold-weather anything, and I absolutely adore it, so we're happy to have separate holidays. And I want to start my sweet babes (who is already walking, btw) off right!

Any advice on operators, resorts, etc?

One last bit of background, we live in Sarf Essex. Ahem, Innit.

CaurnieBred Mon 31-Jan-11 16:46:34

As you are only after a weekend and would prefer Austria, what about one of the Kinderhotels like this one.

CaurnieBred Mon 31-Jan-11 16:51:05

Or this one

Kiwinyc Fri 04-Mar-11 22:06:37

I have no experience of Esprit except during the Summer but i often see last minute deals that are for a single adult and 1-2 children and my DH has considered going with Esprit because of that.

It sounds like you had bad luck regarding the others in your chalet though and can't believe you were subjected to such incredibly rude behaviour!

Skifit Thu 10-Mar-11 11:20:06

Weel i think the folk at your chalet were dam rotten.
I know what its like being a single parent and you get ignored and left out. Its so unfair.
I would have skiied with you MollieO and sat next to you and DS every meal time. People can be so selfish...and mean.
My DP has a ski studio apartment in Megeve, French Alps and we go there 2x a year.
My Ds is 10 yrs and loves younger children, so if you every want a cheap week skiing with low accommodation costs, then let me know.
We could go together. I live in Wiltshire so i tend to fly from Bournemouth. Where abouts are you ?

Skifit Thu 10-Mar-11 11:20:59

I hasten to add that my DP wouldnt be coming , just me and DS !

devastatedofdorset Tue 21-Jun-11 10:26:58

Hi - only just discovered this as i am looking to book a summer holiday with DD and separated from my husband just after Xmas. We went skiing to Megeve in the French Alps with Simon Butler skiing - we were always going on our own because my soon to be Ex H didnt like it but i love it.

I had been with this company once years ago with my best friend before i got married and would recommend it - there were quite a few singles and families and we met soon reallly nice people. I caught my H having an affair and things were still a bit raw- i am much better now - and all the staff were great and people we met very understanding.

Megeve is great - and i alos live in Dorset and was able to fly from Bournemouth and they came and picked us up.

Good luck for next year- let me know if you fancy linking up!

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