Last ski season, we over-passed. Some people overeat, some over-sleep, we over-passed. We over-passed out of fear of under-passing. You see, Aspen/Snowmass changed their Classic Pass structure and we didn’t like it. So, we broadened our horizons and estimated the number of days we wanted to ski and then we tried to maximize the deals at resorts within a 2.5 hour radius of our garage.
We ended up with season passes and discount cards at 5 different ski resorts. Our strategy worked from the standpoint that we were able to pre-pay and ski at a discount every day of the season. Our strategy didn’t work from the standpoint that we ended our season in late April exhausted from trying to maximize the return on all these passes (nobody’s fault but our own).
This year, we are trying a different strategy. We are buying passes at one resort. Our kids get a hugely discounted pass and we will pay the full adult fare. We will ski there the majority of the time and if we decide to go somewhere else, we will find the best deals we can at the grocery store and the gas station. I have no idea if this strategy will be better or worse than last year. We will still end the ski season exhausted from trying to maximize our pass because that’s just how we roll.
August and September are the months when ski passes are cheaper, as many resorts raise the prices as the ski season approaches. Check out your resort’s website for special deals and specific deadlines.
Want to broaden your horizons? Ready to make some decisions? Check out the Brave Ski Mom Adult Season Pass Strategy Decision Tree. It is pretty much as cumbersome as its name, but the payoff on question 6 is enjoyable.
Wondering about the pass strategy for kids? Check back next week.
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