Ski Holiday 101: What do you actually need?

Whether a first-timer or a ski veteran the question of what to bring, or rather how to fit it all in your case, can be a perpetual challenge. Do you change for après? How do you stay warm at 3500 feet? Here’s everything you need to know about how to make your skiing holiday the best (and warmest) yet.

1. Check your forecast

Whether you’re jetting to the States or joining the inevitable “unay” ski trip, make sure you check the weather before you travel. Although it sounds obvious, finding yourself dripping with sweat halfway down a blue run can make the holiday less than ideal. Having a couple of thermal tops as base layers is a perfect way to ensure you stay warm but can also cool off; whip them off, stuff into your pockets and (hopefully) catch the rays at après. Although the high-tech designer versions exist, Uniqlo and M&S have perfect substitutes at more reasonable prices.

2. The proper ski gear

Salopettes and ski jackets are words familiar to the experienced skier, but I also have fond (or not so fond?) memories of being bundled up into an all-in-one jump suit by an anxious parent. If you plan on going more than once, and are on a budget, TKMaxx do excellent ski wear. But if not, what are friends for? Ask around and make sure you try on before you embark. Ski boots, helmets and actual skis are unsurprisingly a must, so check out where you can hire them from at your resort, or include them as part of your holiday package. Warm gloves are also a necessity and splashing out more money on a decent pair will help to avoid frozen, chapped hands. You could also treat yourself at the end of the day with a good quality hand cream.

3. Travel insurance

Whether you’re planning on having a few pints after skiing or heading for a chilled one with family, it’s always essential to make sure you have the correct insurance to cover all possible skiing incidents! Even sprained ankles can be a fear on the slopes, so check you’re covered before you head off. To make life easier the Foreign and Commonwealth Office offer lots of guidance on how to pick the right insurance for your trip.

4. Other essentials

Spare socks are a DIRE MUST! There’s nothing worse than having to put your damp socks on again, I can promise that’d ruin your holiday. Other things to consider are an SPF lipbalm, sun cream to protect your skin, although goggles tan lines are a certain way to make sure everyone knows you’ve been skiing… Things like sweets in pockets are great for keeping up sugar levels if you’re feeling fatigued, and slippers to sooth aching feet at the end of the day are always a lifesaver.

Above all, remember to have fun and make sure a charged phone is always on hand, not only to contact those abandoned on the green slopes, but also to get the most gram worthy pics – I’d recommend filter C2 on VSCOcam.

Naina Mangtani

Featured image courtesy of Bad Kleinkirchheim via Flickr.

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