Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Save Money Skiing in Lesser Known Countries in 2014

Still to this day people have the perception that skiing holidays are for the rich, the mountain locals or competition winners! It is simply not true these days. True there are a number of winter ski holiday options out there that will leave most people sitting at home next winter but look closely and most importantly in detail at what you can get for your money and there are plenty of possibilities for the "average" person to get out on the slopes and rip it up with the best of them.

The key to all of this is not picking up a ski brochure, looking at the picture on the front and saying "That's where I have to go." Chances are the brochure cover images are on the top of the highest pistes in the deepest snow on the sunniest day of the last decade in the best resort in the world! Flick to that resorts brochure page or website and the price will be up there with the most expensive in the world. Ask around and the most common answers to "Where should I go skiing?" will be France, Austria, America, Canada and Switzerland. Whilst for this particular article there are no concrete statistics on this answer if you ask 10 people then chances are these countries will come up.

If you then search for skiing holidays in each of these countries on a search engine and take the top result you can click through all the options of what you actually need for a week of skiing. Each tour operator you bring up will most likely offer holidays to each of these countries and a host of other top destinations for skiing such as Italy, Finland and Norway.

Here is a quick list of what you will most likely need for a week skiing so you know what the results below are based on:

    A Return Flight
    Return Airport Transfers
    A Weeks Accommodation
    A Weeks Lift Pass
    A Weeks Ski Hire
    Ski or Snowboard Lessons
    A Ski Bus (In some resorts)

Here are the cheapest options the search results came up with for the following three countries for everything listed above for a week skiing in February 2014 with flights leaving London, UK.

France - £1073 per person (Self catered accommodation)

Austria - £1021 per person (Breakfast Included)

America - £1699 per person (Breakfast Included)

These prices are what put people off skiing. If you are looking to ski for the first time and you are not sure you will like it, if you want to take your whole family skiing or even if you are a regular skier it is difficult to come up with this kind of money year after year.

This is where lesser known resorts come into play such as those in Eastern Europe, which are easily accessible and offer fantastic services and facilities that are slowly becoming more and more popular in the skiing community. The same search for the ski holiday listed above at two lesser known Eastern European countries, Poland and Slovakia comes up with the following prices, both of which are better than half the price of the better known skiing countries above.

Poland - £523 per person (Breakfast Included)

Slovakia - £589 per person (Self Catered)

So with little more than a country name change in your search engine you will pull up smaller companies who run tour operations in these lesser known skiing destinations at very affordable prices. So the answer is, if you want to ski this winter and think it will be out of your price range then think again but most importantly think again about your destination.

Undiscovered Santa Caterina Ski Resort in Italy!

Santa Caterina is a quiet friendly village in the Valfurva Valley just above Bormio and not far from Bergamo in the Italian Alps. The natural scenery is very unspoilt and serene and its the perfect area for skiing. The ski resort sits at an altitude of 1738 km above sea level, in the heart of the Stelvio National Park. The village is typical of any Italian alpine village with wonderful Italian architecture and of course World Class Skiing.

If you decide to book Santa Caterina ski holidays, you will find on offer 34 km of slopes. There is 2 blue slopes, 12 red slopes and 2 black slopes. There is also a famous slope named after Deboarh Compagnoni who was inaugurated during the Alpine World Cup in 2005. There are 10 lifts including a new 8 seater gondola to the Valle dell'Alpe and the Sunny Valley hut which is also suitable for those not skiing and there is also a new 4 seater chairlift which travels up to the crest of Mount Sorberetta. The resort also offers night time skiing and other great facilities to make sure that you can make the most out of your time on the slopes.

Santa Caterina has become synonymous with snow, sun and fun. The favourable climate and an advanced artificial snow system guarantee perfect slopes from late November through to April. Although the area is better suited to intermediate skiers, beginners and children will have fun at the Tapis-roulant area, a modern place to learn how to ski with the ski instructors of the Ski and Snowboard school of Santa Caterina Valfurva.

You don't have to spend all your time skiing. Those of you who like doing different activities can also engage in nature walks in the snow or visit the famous Bormio Spa. The enchanted natural landscape gives you the possibility to discover the hidden gems and secrets of the valley. There are a number of excursions avaialble in the resort which you can enjoy as part of a group headed by the company of local guides.

There are also fantastic options for Apr├Ęs-ski. You can relax and make use of the wellness facilities in your hotel or choose from a number of superb restaurants and bars in the area. Or why not take part in other sports and activities.