Never been skiing?

Never been skiing?

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When is the best time to go?


Early and late season skiing - In some resorts, such as Zermatt, you can go skiing as early as November when you can find lower rates and minimal crowds. When skiing in early December or late April, we would generally recommend the higher altitude resorts such as Zermatt, Val d’Isere, Courchevel and Tignes. This would give you the best chance of decent snow conditions.


In April the days are longer, warmer and sunnier which can make things easier, especially when skiing with young children. The snow may get a bit soft in the afternoons, but sitting outside in the glorious sunshine for a mountain lunch is a real pleasure and in my view, more than makes up for it.


Peak weeks – The peak weeks are Christmas, New Year, February half term and the Easter school holidays. The rates tend to be at their highest for these weeks and they do get booked up very early as most families are restricted to the school holidays and demand is high.


Other times – January and February are great months to go for great snow conditions across the Alps. January has some of the lowest rates of the season but if you prefer more fair weather skiing then heading to the mountains towards the end of March might be your preferred choice.



What should I look for in a chalet?


For the true luxury experience I recommend opting for one of our collection of fully catered luxury ski chalets. Having the fully catered service allows you to truly relax and focus on enjoying your precious time with your family and friends.


Wake up each morning to a fabulous breakfast laid out for you, with your chef on hand to create something special.


Many of our luxury catered ski chalets include a driver service to whisk you off to the slopes in the morning and bring your tired group back to the chalet after a day’s skiing. All skiers know how hard it is to walk any distance in ski boots so having a driver service at your beck and call will make the process effortless and means you don’t need to worry about getting to and from the slopes.


Return to your luxury ski chalet after a long day on the slopes to afternoon tea and then an impeccable dinner in the evening expertly prepared by your talented private chef.


Another welcome feature at some luxury ski chalets is a hot tub to soothe tired legs after your tiring day on the slopes. The best ones are outside where you can enjoy a glass of champagne surveying the glorious mountain views while snowflakes fall all around you. Certainly one of the great ‘ski trip’ experiences.


Firefly Collection’s portfolio includes over 500 luxury ski chalets in Europe, allowing our team plenty of high quality options when looking for the perfect property for your perfect ski holiday.



Should I get ski lessons?


Yes, if this is your first time skiing or snowboarding then we strongly recommend lessons from a professional ski instructor.


Booking lessons can be confusing if you are unfamiliar with how they work, so we are on hand to advise you on the most suitable lesson options. We work with a variety of excellent ski schools across all of our resorts and we would be happy to book these for you.



What to wear skiing?


Having the right gear on the slopes is essential for enjoying your ski holiday. The right clothing will depend of course on the temperature up the mountain and varies with the time of year you are travelling. But for the majority of the ski season 3 layers is the best – a thermal base layer, a fleece and a ski jacket. Most people wear a pair of thermal leggings under ski trousers.



Essential items to bring:



Base-layers – a set of thermal base-layers is vital. 1 pair of leggings and 2 to 3 tops should be fine for a week.


Mid-layers – a micro fleece or hoody will come in handy for those colder days.


Outer-layers – staying warm and dry in an insulated and waterproof ski jacket and ski trousers is an absolute must. Onesies are warm for kids but do bear in mind bathroom logistic. From personal experience with my own children, I have found it easier with separate trousers and jackets.


Ski socks – specialist ski socks will fit comfortably in your boot and come up to just below the knee.


Gloves – you’ll need to buy waterproof ski gloves. Tip: mittens are warmer, especially for kids and we would definitely recommend glove leashes for children… and maybe even adults!


Goggles/ sunglasses – wind, snow and sun reflecting off the snow are all tough on the eyes so eye protection is a must. We recommend goggles over sunglasses.


Neck warmer – a warm neck is a warm body. Neck warmers are essential for kids.


Helmet – we would strongly recommend a ski helmet for all skiers and snowboarders. Helmets are essential for children and ski schools won’t accept kids in classes without them. It is possible to rent helmets for children from ski hire shops in resorts.


Sun cream – the snow reflects the sun onto any bare skin and you want to avoid returning home with embarrassing panda eye tan lines from your goggles!



What do I wear when I’m not skiing?


Ski resorts are fairly casual destinations and your ski chalet is your home away from home. We would recommend warm, cosy knits, a woolly hat and snow boots (waterproof boots with a good tread) for your time off the slopes.


Why not try skiing before you go?


Having an initial lesson or two in an indoor ski centre in your home country is a great way to give you a head start before your holiday so you can spend more of your week up the mountain, enjoying the beautiful views, mountain restaurants and long pistes and less time on the beginner slopes.



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