Don’t plan your excursion before reading our military savings tips.
By Marguerite Cleveland
Ski Season is upon us but for those who love to ski the costs have skyrocketed in recent years with daily lift tickets crossing over the $100 mark. Here are some tips to enjoy this fun sport without breaking the bank by using your military discount.
- Visit your military base’s outdoor recreation center. If you base is located within driving distance of a local ski resort they will often have rental equipment for skiing. This is greatly discounted for what you would pay at a large resort. Also check out the monthly tours, many installations offer ski trips.
- Your installations’ Leisure Travel Services (LTS) is another place you should check for discounted lift tickets. Fort Carson’s LTS offers discounted Colorado Ski Resort lift tickets and passes.
- Ski Resorts Websites. Most ski resorts offer some type of military discount and some are better than others with some being extremely generous. Do an internet search for Military Appreciation Days at Ski Resorts. Quite a few have special days offering 50% off and some even offer free lift tickets.
- Season Passes. If you really love to ski and are within driving distance to a resort a season pass is the way to go. To ensure the best deal purchase in the Spring. This is the time of year most resorts offer their best deals; some even have military discounts off the price of a season pass. Many also can be used for summer activities which increases the value. This year Vail Resorts offered a $99 military season pass to celebrate their anniversary and military heritage. Unfortunately it is too late to purchase this year but it is an example of why purchasing early and rack up huge savings.
- Smaller Resorts. This is those fun Mom and Pop type places. You won’t have all the fancy chair lifts, gondolas and other amenities and some still have rope tows and t-bars but you will get amazing prices for a day of skiing. These are great for honing your skills and an economical place to learn to ski as well.
- Learn to Ski Packages. Look on resort websites for these packages. They will include a lesson, rental equipment and a lift ticket. Sometimes the lift ticket will have restrictions but over all a good value. Some resorts also offer a multi-day package
- GROUPON and other discount sites have some deals. Looking on GROUPON in Denver, you can purchase a discounted membership to the Mountain Sports Club which will then give you discounts like BOGO on lift tickets at some resorts as well as lodging and rental discounts. Also lots of deals on ski rental and gear on GROUPON.
- Canada has what I like to refer to as the American discount which is an exchange rate very favorable to the US dollar. It works out to a 25-30% discount depending on the rate. Canada has quite a few ski resorts within driving distance of the U.S. border.
When looking for more bang for your buck always check out your military discounts. So many businesses appreciate your service and are willing to show it with a discount. This year my family will be skiing for $99 each for the season because we planned ahead. That is less than the cost of one lift ticket at most places. One weekend trip will have little cost as we turned in hotel points for a free stay. Even though the preseason deals are long past with the tips above you won’t have to pay full price to enjoy ski season in your area.
Marguerite Cleveland is a freelance writer who specializes in human interest and travel stories. She is a military brat, a veteran and now a military spouse. Her military experience is vast as the daughter of a Navy man who served as an enlisted sailor and then Naval Officer. She served as an enlisted soldier in the reserves and on active duty, then as an Army Officer. She currently serves as a military spouse. She lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and two sons. Visit her website www.WanderWordsWine.com