So you’ve decided to start planning your first ski trip, but have no idea of where to start. What should you look for when choosing the best packages? What sort of gear would you need for your trip?
Club Med have answers to all these questions… and even some you might not have even thought of – like: Should I go the DIY way or the Club Med all-inclusive route?
There’s a preconceived notion amongst potential travelers that DIY travel (i.e. booking your own accommodation, flights and activities) is cheaper than choosing an all-inclusive package. The truth is that most times, DIY actually works out to be more expensive because you have to pay for everything separately. Not forgetting the amount of time it takes to do all the research and planning yourself.
Therefore, all-inclusive seems the obvious way to go. Consumers are cautioned however, when choosing an all-inclusive option, to be aware of what that really means. Many holiday packages are labelled as all-inclusive, but actually only include flights and accommodation. As the originators of the all-inclusive holiday concept, Club Med offers consumers a holiday that includes almost everything you can think of. All-inclusive the Club Med way means one call, price and payment that includes;
- Transport: return flights and transfers to and from the Club Med Resort.
- Accommodation: A range of accommodation from comfortable club rooms to lavish suites.
- Fine dining: Full board throughout your stay including wine, beer and soft drinks with breakfast, lunch and dinner.
- Open bar and snacks: served during the day and night.
- Sport Activities: Ski passes, ski lessons for beginners and pro skiers
- Club Med Baby Welcome: For babies up to 23 months (at most family resorts)
- Mini Club Med: For children from 2 to 10 years.
- Juniors’ Club Med: for teenagers from 11 to 17 years (in selected resorts).
- Activities and evening entertainment: Leisure and relaxation as well as night life.
Does the holiday include ski lessons?
Ski lessons and passes can add up to quite a surprising bill. All the Club Med ski resorts have expert ski instructors to teach adults and kids how to conquer the slopes like a pro. If you’re a seasoned skier you don’t have to waste valuable ski time learning with the beginners, the GOs (Gentils Organisateurs) will also show you the best routes and slopes and maybe let you in on a few hidden gems. The resorts also offer skiing equipment so you won’t have tons of things to declare at customs (or lug with you through the airport).
What else can you do besides skiing?
If your adrenaline junky partner is trying to convince you to tag along, but you aren’t so keen on skiing yourself, Club Med still has plenty to keep you busy. Beyond winter sports the Alps also offer a spectacular backdrop to sight see and try out the local cuisine. Tours can also be arranged through the resort at a discounted rate. If that doesn’t sound good, you can always enjoy some good old rest and relaxation at the resort’s spa.
What do I pack?
Hang on… don’t pack your whole wardrobe, you aren’t going to Antarctica. Contrary to popular belief temperatures don’t reach bone chilling lows. The European Alps are at the same longitude as Bordeaux and not far from the Mediterranean so, while there might be snow on the ground, bad weather is unusual and the sun is often shining. Here are a few must have items for your snow adventure:
- A warm snow jacket that is breathable and waterproof.
- Pants: pack a pair of thick, warm, waterproof pants.
- Under layer (thermal underwear): the most important thing is to pack layers that you can peel off if you get too hot.
- Fleece or a thick jersey.
- Gloves: Thick waterproof gloves are a must.
- Ski boots
- A wool or fleece hat.
- Neck Gaiter: less fashionable than a scarf, but most skiers and boarders prefer the gator.
- Skiing Socks: Your everyday socks aren’t going to cut it in the snow. Make sure to pack some hefty wool socks for the trip.
In the Alps a common weather pattern is a couple of days of snowfall followed by a long clear spell, often with warm sunshine but don’t go pulling out your bikini, it doesn’t get that warm.
So what are you waiting for? Clearly, there’s nothing to have sleepless nights about. All that’s left to do is book your holiday and go enjoy some winter holiday fun.