Think snow! The best Family Ski Guide has arrived and it's time to start planning your time on the snow.
I've dedicated so much of my life to this travel guide. Last year I was on snow for more than 60 days—from Mt. Hood to Mt. Tremblant, I've waited in a lot of lift lines for you. Why all this work? Well, number one I'm passionate about skiing. And number two, when we give a resort the thumbs up, we mean it. I've skied miles and miles and visited all the ski schools to get you the information you need to book the perfect family ski trip.
Why listen to me? I think like a mom that needs to get the most out of every vacation. I know how important it is for you to make memories. And I also know you've got limited time to plan, you've got other things to do and that your vacation dollars are carefully spent. That's why each year we put more and more energy into our ski guides, trust me, this is the Best Family Ski Guide yet!
Here's the methodology: We sorted the best of the best into buckets. Flip through the pages and get ready to be inspired. Each category has three winners, I've always believed in curating options to make things easier on our community. This is where we started—we came up with this master list of questions we wanted answered.
Rules For Planning the Perfect Family Ski Trip
1.) How's the snow? Pick a location that will have reliable snow during your visit. Nothing is guaranteed, but there is such a thing as seasonality.
2.) What percentage of the trails are beginner/intermediate/advanced? Find a resort that matches your family's ski abilities. There are resorts that are great matches to young kids and beginners and those that are best suited to powderhounds and kids who crave jumps.
3.) Do you like to cook? Figure out if you want to dine in or eat out. If you want to cook some nights, book a condo.
4.) How's the aprés-ski scene? Research what other activities the resort has on hand. If the weather is too cold, it's nice to have an indoor pool or movie theater or trampoline park.
5.) What about mom? Don't forget about you! If downtime is important to you, opt for a resort with a spa or fitness center.
6.) How's the ski school? If you plan on sending the kids to ski school, ask about what the teacher-to-student ration will be.
7.) Can I stay on mountain? Stay as close as possible to the mountain. Ski in, ski out is optimal for families to help make nap time feasible and cut down on meltdowns in the shuttle.
8.) When are you going to travel? Decide if you can handle lift lines. Christmas and Presidents Day weekend will likely have the longest lines.
9.) How are you going to get there? Long drives can zap the fun out of the trip, look for convenient access to airports or city centers.
10.) Does money matter? You can save money by visiting on off-peak times and during the week. Buy tickets in advance and plan on doing some cooking. There are also options that are extremely luxurious—taking all the worry off of mom's plate. There are resorts to suit most budgets.
Once you've let us help you pick the spot, then the fun begins. Don't worry, we know a great trip involves more than just the snow. We've got plenty of ideas on what to do when the weather isn't cooperating or when you just want to get pampered. You can pick a ski resort based on best restaurants or best spas. If you are the mom in charge of booking you definitely get to make your votes count. Aprés-ski is just as important as on the mountain fun. Memories are made in the condo over a game of monopoly just as they are on the chairlift. Oh, we've also got the packing lists you need and a few exclusive recipes for you to enjoy while on mountain.
Beaches, yes they can be great. But think about it, you're escaping winter, not embracing it. When I fell in love with Mr. Momtrends, I signed on for being a ski mom. It's brought us closer together as a family. The giggles on the chair lifts, the epic fails over the tiniest jumps...these are the things memories are made of. As we flip through the albums of vacations past, the kids always gravitate to the ski trips. I hope this is the year you try someplace new or book that very first trip.
We've got a new booking tool to help too. Ski.com is our exclusive booking partner. Call them and you'll get a real person to help you plan all the details of your trip. Our guide will get you pretty far, but we can't book for you. That's where Ski.com comes in. They are there to sweat the details. Pretty cool isn't it?!?!
Let us know what you think and be sure to visit the Ski Moms Survey on page 26 to let us know where you love to ski. And remember #thinksnow.