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Friends skiing in the Back Bowls in Vail, CO.

The best tips for an unforgettable family ski vacation

Planning a ski vacation can seem like a stressful undertaking, especially if it's your family's first time. Not to worry, the Christiania is here to help. We've got the best tips for planning your ski getaway to make your trip to Vail as seamless as possible, so you can relax and enjoy the slopes. 

1. Rent, don't buy your ski equipment: Renting your ski gear is an excellent way to cut down on the cost of your trip. It is much cheaper than investing in your own equipment and you can save on extra airline baggage fees. Renting also gives travelers the opportunity to try out new, high-quality "demo" equipment. For rental equipment we recommend Troy's Ski Shop, conveniently located right across from the Christiania Lodge.

2. Trail Maps are your best friend: Trail maps are key for navigating the mountain and learning the terrain. Vail Mountain's vastness is the reason it is one of the best places in the world to ski but also can present a challenge for those unfamiliar with the layout. Trail maps show in detail the different runs and their difficultly level, as well as a variety of zones available for each level of rider/skier. Becoming familiar with the trail map will allow your family to go beyond the bunny slopes and have a true ski adventure.  

3. Hydrate and take a rest day: Drinking plenty of water is key to having a great ski vacation. The altitude can prove difficult for those coming from a lower elevation to adjust to. We recommend starting to hydrate a week prior to coming to Vail and continuing to drink a lot of water during your trip. Taking a rest day is also important, especially for those new to the sport. Vail has an endless array of non-skiing activities including: snowmobile adventures, sleigh ride dinners, and hot springs. Adventure Ridge provides an entire day of fun on the mountain with tubing, ski biking, and a roller coaster.

4. Ski LessonsSki lessons are an invaluable way not only learn the sport or hone skills but also to get to know the mountain. You have the luxury of an instructor to guide you around Vail and get to skip the lift lines, which means more time on the slopes! Family lessons are a great option for those who wants to enjoy the day together and are at similar skiing levels. For parents wanting to enjoy the day kid-free, Vail has a great ski school program for children and teens. Be sure to arrive on time in the morning and leave extra time for putting on ski gear. Pack your child's pocket with extra snacks for the day and make sure they have waterproof gloves, googles, and a helmet. 

5. Consider a season pass: During the holidays window lift ticket prices can go up to $220 per day to ski in Vail. If you're planning on skiing for a week it is often times cheaper to buy an Epic local pass. These start at $719 and allow for 10 days at Vail and Beaver Creek with unlimited skiing and Breckenridge and Keystone. 

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