Snow. It’s magical stuff, and many believe it’s simply out of touch for most family budgets.
The good news is with the right information and a few helpful hints you can get your family to the snow for not much more than $1000*!
Yep, from whoa to go you can afford a family snow holiday this year.
There’s no arguing that a family snow holiday can be expensive. From snow gear to petrol, food accommodation, lift passes and lessons – the list goes on.
It’s enough to make any average family think a snow holiday is out of the budget, no matter how much the kids are begging for it. Let’s however be honest. A family snow holiday is an unforgettable bonding experience of non-stop fun set against a powder-covered, winter wonderland.
Can you think of anything more fabulous?
(Insert long sigh here)
Okay mum! Stop the sigh and listen up. We’ve the skinny on getting your crew to the snow this year for under $1000.
The good news is with a little preparation you can have the affordable family snow holiday you’re dreaming of, and without the pressure of selling a kidney to pay the bill!
Affordable Family Accommodation at the Snow
Your snow accommodation needs to be comfortable as well as somewhere you can relax, dry-off and get warm after being out and about in the chilly snow. It also needs to be safe, clean, offer family-friendly dining and have facilities to accommodate your group, big or small.
When comparing snow accommodation, the prices are most impacted by:
a) how fancy the accommodation is
b) how close to the snowfields the accommodation is located
c) how many people the accommodation can sleep
The other factor that can allow for huge savings in your accommodation costs is to seek out the affordable mid-week specials. For example, the mid-week special at Howmans Gap which is private accommodation with shared facilities is only $45 per person, per night! Be sure to look for these deals, we know the kids won’t protest a few days of missing school!
There’s also benefits to timing your trip, later in the season can offer better rates as can booking with a long lead time (when it’s not ski season). The tip is to watch for deals and leap on one that suits you!
Affordable Snow Gear for the Family
Not having the right gear for a snow holiday is almost a guarantee of having a crummy time. Being cold and wet or using equipment that is wrongly sized or poor quality is a complete fun killer! Snow gear is pretty much a non-negotiable. So, how do you do it on a budget?
There’s a few ways to handle the snow gear situation. The first and most desirable one is to beg or borrow it from friends. If you know people that have gear – ask them! Secondly you can buy it (The ALDI Ski Week in May is your go-to or check out local Buy, Swap, Sell for second hand bargains!) Lastly, you can hire which ensures the fit is perfect and you’ll get everything you need!
Hiring snow gear is something you should research and compare as hiring off the slopes or at a third-party place can reap generous savings. The best deal we could find was from Falls Creek Cross Country Ski Hire which offered ski gear for two adults and two children at a family rate of $70 a day. Comparatively a resort in the same area was $258. That’s a lot of left over change to spend on something else!
Affordable Food & Dining at the Snow
Some families will bring in their own food staying in self-contained accommodation. If you do this our best tip is to buy your groceries closer to home as the alpine village shops do have more inflated pricing.
Other families will choose to eat out and enjoy the holiday feel of mum having a break from the kitchen. (Yes please!) You’re well advised to seek accommodation that includes a dining package as there’s great savings to be made by pre-paying this kind of discounted daily dining. For example, if you stay at the Howmans Gap Alpine Centre a family of 4 can eat for $126 a day which includes a hot breakfast and two-course dinner while kids under two eat free! Be sure to look for such offers when you book your accommodation.
Affordable Activities at the Snow
The snow has so many fun family activities for all ages that being bored is literally impossible! Being exhausted however is a total possibility! Your choice of activities will have a big impact on your snow weekend budget so it’s important to choose wisely.
- Little kids will be happy to simply snow play or try tobogganing (it’s about $15 to hire one per day).
- Cross country skiing is more affordable as it doesn’t require lift passes.
- Skiing and boarding do require a lift pass which for example at Falls Creek is $652 for a weekend for a family of four and hire for the equipment is about $250.
Don’t forget that midweek hires will see bigger savings so be sure to do your research!
A family holiday at the snow is not as out of reach as you might have imagined! Our best tips to make it an affordable family break is to seek out special rates and find yourself an economical place to stay and eat. Mum Central recommends you do your research – or check out Howmans Gap Alpine Centre which is definitely Mum Central’s best tip for making your snow weekend budget-friendly. Aside from cost-savings it’s amazing location, great facilities and range of accommodation options means its sure to suit any family!
(There’s also the extra consideration if you need any further convincing, you know the ‘memories are priceless’ argument. What number can be put on two amazing days of quality time, endless laughter and seeing the pure joy of experiencing the snow together for the very first time…? None! Go make some memories mum!)