What is it about visiting a buffet? All of a sudden we become obsessed with getting every last penny of dietary value (and we usually measure that by quantity and not quality) out of our entrance fee? You probably do it and so do I, normally we go to a sit-down and spend twice (or perhaps 3-4 times) as much and not fee like we are getting ripped off, but when we go to a buffet we feel as we have to eat like a prolonged famine is about to hit. Yes, admit it you do it and so do I! A season’s pass to a snow resort is essentially the same thing.
Season’s Passes — the Positive
A season’s pass can help save money when skiing, just divide the cost of a pre-season’s pass into the cost of the season’s pass and if you will ski at that resort around that result (more or less) then it could very well be worth buying the season’s pass. Buying a season’s pass also allows the resorts to get some cash in advance to keep their operations going through the lean summer months (there is still costs even though they are not operating). It also gives the resort the ability to know how many people at a minimum will be visiting their resort throughout the season.
Season’s Passes — the Negatives
Greg Ditrinco the editor of Ski Magazine sums it up very well in the November 2012 issue of Ski Magazine: “But a pass can act as a leash, tethering you to the convenient and familiar”. He goes on to observe part of the wonder of skiing is the thrill of exploration and discovery. Indeed that is true.
I have held a number of season’s passes for two separate resorts and there is the pressure to ski at those resorts and only those resorts and I want to ski at different resorts throughout the season. Any place or setup no matter how cool and exciting at first does become boring, mundane, and routine; and like most of us I get enough of that at my 925er.
Season’s Passes — My Final Word
A season’s passcan be a good deal but only if it is a place you can get to on a whim. If you have to plan it out in the slightest, forget it. If you live five miles from a resort and you might want to ditch the 925er (and can) early one day to get some carves in, or hit that hill on a weekend when you are home then I would believe it is a good deal. if going to the resort is not a trip down the bunny hill then buy pre-season passes. Its bad enough the demands of life ties us down enough, why add another — leash?
Season’s Passes — Your Turn
What is your experience and ideas regarding snow resort season’s passes?