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So, you want to do a ski season?

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    The season ends mid-April, so you're a bit late really, the most you'll get is about a month; your best bet is to phone round the tour operators, and see if anyone's needing peak season staff for the last bit of the season... if you're prepared to do any job, it will help a lot. Don't expect to be able to choose your resort, as this really is heading into the end of winter.

    This assumes you'd be getting a job - if not, then just pick a larger resort, find a bed, and go have a good time. Val D'Isere and Meribel both spring to mind as being full of Brits and having a good ski area, as well as good night life too.
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    I'm thinkin bout applying to be a lifty in Vail, Colorado next season... I guess I should apply just to see if it happens!

    People who've enjoyed their ski seasons despite the hard work - was it just the constant access to skiing that made it so good? How did you meet other people doing the same as you?
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    Hi,
    I'm planning to do a season in Austria winter 2008/9 (get a job in a hotel through a British company such as Esprit or similar)
    How much money will I need to have saved for it? In theory accomodation etc. is covered, and I'll get paid, but what other costs have people found?
    Cheers,
    Kim
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    (Original post by ~*kim*~)
    Hi,
    I'm planning to do a season in Austria winter 2008/9 (get a job in a hotel through a British company such as Esprit or similar)
    How much money will I need to have saved for it? In theory accomodation etc. is covered, and I'll get paid, but what other costs have people found?
    Cheers,
    Kim
    Anyone?
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    Well once you get there, chances are you won't be paid anything until the following month. So I'd advise taking enough to cover you for that period.

    It all depends on how much you'll be going out drinking- because that's more or less all you'll Need to pay for. That and late night kebabs

    Having said that, you may want to do nice things like have lunch up the mountain or eat out for dinner. They're expensive habits in resort and a lot of people don't bother with them.
    You'll probably want to get an austrian mobile too while you're out there.. prices vary, but you'll be able to get a sim card at the very least for around €30.
    Before I started my season I took an impromptu holiday to germany and ended up with under £100 to last me. I managed, but only just.
    The people I was with took around £350-£450 and were comfortable.

    I'd also advise having some security money in your account in case you have an accident- not sure how it works in austria, but in france we had to pay medical bills up front, then get the company insurance to sort us out afterwards.

    Hope this helps
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    I know absolutely nothing about ski resorts and ski seasons, so I would really appreciate some advice! I've only been skiing for 1 week before but had an absolutely amazing time, and now I've got time off in between uni and starting my job, I'd love to do some more skiing. Are most people that do seasons really good at skiing already, or would there be time to have lessons??

    I don't have enough time off to do an entire season as my job starts early 2009 and I'm hopefully studying French until the end of August. I know that would make me much less employable, but are there any companies who would be willing to take me on just for 2/3 months?
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    I found that people doing sseason's had a wide range of abilities. A lot of people were beginners, and learnt with each other.
    When I went I'd done a little skiing, but started snowboarding from scratch along with a load of the people I worked with. I never took a lesson, but pain taught me more than enough

    For more info on companies, I'd check out this site. It should have all the info you need on doing a winter season, and you can apply for winter jobs from there.
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    (Original post by bingo brown)
    Haha thanks thats useful Just need to sort out applications now, very exciting!
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    I know guys who never skiied before, and by the end of the season, were pretty damned good. One of the ski schools in resort did free lessons for seasonnaires, if they wanted them, on certain days, so it's worth looking into that too...
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    Right ok, here's my situation. Me and a mate have decided to take the plunge and do a ski season. Reaaaaaaly excited!

    But just wondering who is the best company to do it with? There seems to be a wide range of companies to do it with; ranging from big companies like Crystal to small chalets who employ like 10 people.

    Whose done a ski season and what would you recommend? My mate knows someone who owns a small chalet who would employ us, but I think i'd rather go with a big companyyy..because you'd meet more people doing a season. Thereforeee the social life would be better?

    The other big question is where? We've decided France, but where would people say is the most lively? I've been Meribel, Les Deux Alpes and Tignes...and they all seemed quite live. But not sure!

    But anyway, any help is aprreciated...thanks!
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    Small chalet companies are often more expensive, with higher standards - you may have to treat it more like a traditional job than a season with them... they're also likely only to offer chalet hosting jobs. The pay might be better than a larger tour op, although that will vary - you can usually pick the resort you want to be in, just by selecting a local chalet company.

    Large companies have a range of jobs, and operate in different resorts - but you won't usually get to pick where you're going, just say where you'd like to be; whether you end up there is the call of the company! You meet a lot of people quickly, working for a tour operator, and will often live with a lot of them too - that can get a bit overwhelming after a couple of months, as you basically NEVER get any time away from them, even if you are best mates.

    The biggest deal with the larger companies is that you often get an employment package, consisting of the likes of food, transport, lift pass, insurance, and accomodation (housing is REALLY expensive in resort, so this can be a big deal). YOur pay will reflect whatever they give you though - more stuff = less pay, usually. My season was with Mark Warner (well, one of their sub-divisions), and I'd recommend them.

    As for resorts - I went to Meribel, which has great nightlife. Courcheval 1850 is nice for skiing but totally dead in the evening, lower resorts in the valley are better (1650 especially). Val is good but expensive, and very British, and Les Deux Alpes is quite studenty from what I've heard. One thing you hear again and again - wherever you end up, you'll have a good time... it's nothing like being in a resort as a punter, as it's home for you, not just a holiday.
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    Ah thank you for your post...biiiiiig help!

    The chalet who has offered us a job is in a lower resort in Courcheval (guessing maybe le Praz 1300) - so not sure what to expect from that resort. I want a lively nightlifeeee where I go, but I'm thinking this might not be able to offer us this as much as maybe a chalet in Meribel. But, I loveee skiing the 3 valleys - my favourite resort for actual skiing! And this is what the season is mostly about I guess..so should really base my decision on that lol!

    Also, generally speaking what sort of ages are people who do a ski season? i'll be 18, but I read somewhere that some companies don't employ under 21's? I dont see it being a problem, just wondered really.
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    If nightlife is important, forget Le Praz, it's tiny, and the snow is also unreliable! I'd say you should try and get a job in Meribel, but then I am biased!

    18 is the lowest age - you can pretty much work in a bar or restaurant, or as a chalet host/assistant.
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    I was pretty much all decided on doing a season in France, either Val Thorens of Tignes if I could chose. But now a friend has suggested going to Canada, probably Banff over Whistler. Anyone have any experience of either doing a season in canada or even just skiing/boarding holiday there? I know its a bit more of a hassle getting visa's etc sorted but a few people have said its much better than european resorts, more guaruntee of snow etc.
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    Canada is something else - make the Alps look a lot smaller once you've been! My friend has started applying already for jobs in Whistler with Supertravel, Ski World and Mark Warner..they have already started recruiting for the 2008/9 season and reckons the jobs in Canada go very quickly. She is applying for these through www.ski-jobs.co.uk but I know BUNAC also do a scheme where they get you a job in a hotel and sort your working visa out and everything.
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    Just remember the drinking limit in US is 21!
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    Aw cool thanks, my mate knows people who manage a bar or resturant in Banff so going to see if we can get a job there. If not better get applying soon!

    And no worries about the drinking age, I'll be 22 when I go!
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    my sister did a season in whistler through a company called OWH. she really enjoyed it and ended up staying from november - september due to finding new jobs once skiing was out of the question and having a flexible(ish) return flight. she met loads of friends through the provided staff housing and also managed to fit in a 3 week trip to california. hope this helps!

    oh and the drinking age in canada is 19 (i think), although i got served at 18 (shh)
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    Anyone been to Lech in Austria? That's where I'm gonna be working this winter
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    All of those that did chalet hosting, did you do a cookery course? And if so how did you afford it, the companies are recommending 4 week ones which are £2450!

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Updated: December 20, 2014
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