Every year, ski resorts are dedicated to creating a better experience for all of their guests than the season before. They do this through thorough grooming efforts, optimal snowmaking methods and offering good eats, drinks, and events to partake in. And every year, they try ensuring that you’re getting the best deals around. Resorts take a look at a lot of things like cost of rentals, lift tickets and season passes. After determining those prices they get ready for the season and for eager snow-buffs to make their way to the resort.
Some locations across the U.S. and Canada are even fortunate enough to have “sister resorts” close by. And that means visitors can maximize a unique skiing experience by exploring not one, but multiple mountains all in one trip. There are instances when passes will also work even if means the resorts aren’t next door to one another. This is particularly true when large companies like Alterra Mountain Co. acquire several resorts. They’ll create things like the Ikon Pass, which allows you to ski and ride “where you want, when you want, with the most days and the least restrictions.”
But for those looking for passes that give some pretty incredible perks, there are quite a few options available. From the east coast to west coast, let’s take a look at the ones you can select from.
The Epic Pass is a great way to have access to multiple resorts across the globe. However, you might not have your sights on a European ski resort excursion. So if you’re sticking around to just one place (like Colorado for instance) then you still have a good selection you can pick from. Try utilizing either CO Ski Country USA Gold Pass or the Colorado Gems Card if you’re itching to hit up more than one resort.
The former gets you into all 23 Colorado Ski Country member resorts, but you do have to apply for it before obtaining the coveted membership. When you don’t want to wait to get on the list, the latter gives you the choice of either two 2-for-1 lift tickets or two 30% off lift tickets at each of the 11 Colorado Gems Resorts. It’s a pretty great deal considering how lift ticket costs can easily stack up.
There is one pass that local ski and snowboard enthusiasts in the New England area can’t get enough of. The Peak Pass offers affordable season passes for adults while keeping costs at a reasonable price. Skiers in Vermont, New York, Pennsylvania, and New Hampshire can enjoy the perks of this pass and enjoy more than one resort during the season at their leisure.
Like many places during the weekend the roads can get crowded, so if you have the opportunity to hit up resorts during the week that’s always more advisable! What’s also great about the Peak Pass is that you get unrestricted access (no blackout dates) to seven resorts, plus savings on lodging, retail items, and more.
Easily one of the best outdoor sports states in the U.S., Utah has an array of ski resorts that both locals and travelers find exciting. Which is why people are happy there are so many multi-resort passes available. Currently, there are five distinct passes. However, it’s best to keep in mind some years might add or remove these options (though it’s rare when they are popular enough).
Perhaps one that could be said to have the best perks (but the steepest price tag) is the Gold Pass. This pass gives you 50 days or more at each of Utah’s 14 ski and snowboard resorts. It’s fully transferable so if you’re not skiing friends and family can take advantage of it instead. And if family members use it enough, you could always split the cost (its 2018-2019 season sat at $5,200) to evenly split and share it with everyone.
Another pass to consider is the Yeti Pass, which gets you a free lift ticket at each of the resorts in the state. It’s a great pass option for individuals who are interested to see what Utah’s resorts have to offer. Even if you’ve already been to some of the resorts, now you’ll have the chance to check them all out (or at least a few of them) throughout the season.
West Coast skiing is incredibly fun (and diverse) and has a vibe about it that you don’t find in other resorts sometimes. And like some states, they are geographically fortunate enough to have ski destinations within close distances from one another. Guests also get to reap the benefits of this fact and can plan on skiing or riding more than one spot throughout the season.
For skiers interested in visiting resorts up north, you can hop on the Tahoe Super4 Pack to get four days of skiing in right off the bat. Valid at both Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows, ticket holders save more money than at the ticket window. They also can avoid waiting in line and can simply head off on the resort to maximize their ski time.
In Canada, skiing can sometimes be harder, steeper and more epic than in other places around the world. And the same can be said about the Banff ski area, one of the favorite ski destinations in the country. Lucky for locals and those who travel there, the opportunity to hit multiple mountains in one fell swoop is an easy thing to do.
With the SkiBig3 Pass, guests can enjoy skiing at Banff Sunshine, Lake Louise and Mt. Norquay. Each resort offers a unique skiing experience and has plenty of trails to match beginner to advanced skier needs! Additional perks to the pass include night skiing and riding at Mt. Norquay, resort benefits at each of the three, and even great discounts on rentals to really make it worthwhile.