Travelling solo gives you a unique sense of freedom and adventure. Yet going on a solo ski holiday might seem daunting, even if you’re a seasoned skier.
Maybe at some point you’ve considered a solo trip. Especially if your friends or family aren’t interested in snow sports or they’re not usually available to travel at the same time.
But, don’t let nerves get the better of you! Preparation is key and with our simple guide, you’ll be able to take off on your own skiing adventure with confidence.
How to plan a solo ski holiday
1. Don’t only consider cost when choosing accommodation
If you are an advanced skier and don’t want to take lessons, you might want to consider accommodation where you're likely to meet other skiers.
Booking a room in a ski chalet is a great way to meet others winter sports enthusiasts. Not only do you have company over breakfast and dinner, but you’re also likely to meet intermediate and advanced skiers who will be equally happy to have company on the slopes.
Many chalet companies also offer ski guiding in addition to catering so this will practically guarantee you an amazing ski experience, fun company and a stress-free holiday.
If you’re staying in a hotel or apartment, ask the manager if any other solo travellers are staying and see if anyone wants to join you on the slopes or for some après-skiing.
2. Hire your ski equipment in advance
If you don’t have your own skis and/or boots (which most of us don’t), then find out where the nearest hire shop is at the resort. Contact them to book your gear before you leave, while you’re planning the details of your trip. You can ask your accommodation manager for a recommendation or just Google the nearest one.
The other bonus of booking online in advance is you’ll usually get an online discount. If you are unsure what’s right for you, contact the store directly, they’ll ask you a few questions and you’ll have the right type of skis for your level of ability waiting for you when you arrive.
Sometimes you’ll find, if you’re really lucky, shops deliver straight to your accommodation.
3. Find out about ski classes in your resort
If you’re a beginner, then you’ll need to book ski lessons to get you started on the slopes. It’s just too dangerous (for you and others around you) to try skiing by yourself without learning first.
Note that group lessons are much more reasonably priced than private lessons and are really good fun! You’ll be surprised how many adults of all ages are total beginners so this is a great opportunity to socialize and get to know other skiers who might be travelling on their own too.
Even if you’re an intermediate or advanced skier, it's always helpful to improve your technique - and getting a few lessons in will no-doubt give you some new tips. You’ll also make new friends with a common interest which will make your holiday more enjoyable (and give you an excuse for long lunches and an après-ski drink or two!). And who knows, you might make some friends for your next ski holiday.
4. Don't skimp on planning - make a packing checklist!
Your luggage for your ski trip needs to be carefully planned. A skiing holiday isn’t like a beach trip where you can just throw in some flip-flops, light clothing and swimsuit. You really need to think about what you need.
There’s your ski suit, of course, then ski socks, thermal underwear, layers of tops and jumpers, ski gloves, goggles…the list is long!
If you forget something, such as your goggles or gloves, you’ll likely be able to buy them when you arrive. But expect to pay a little extra if it's a touristy place and you'll probably have a smaller variety to choose from, too. It can be frustrating to fork out a lot of money for a pair of sunglasses that, albeit functional, you don’t even like.
5. Get in shape for your solo ski holiday
Whether you’re a beginner or a more advanced skier, you’ll need to be fit to hit the slopes. Otherwise you’ll collapse in a heap after a couple of days and be more concerned about resting those aching muscles than looking forward to the next day out on the ski run.
But most importantly, fitness prevents injury! Which you want to avoid at all cost, and more-so when you're travelling on your own. Regular visits to your local gym, going for a run, cycle or a swim, yoga and pilates will all help improve your overall fitness and flexibility.
Choose a form of exercise you enjoy and that will strengthen your core and thigh muscles (those glutes, quads and hamstrings!), and try to exercise two to three times a week for two months leading up your ski holiday. That’s the ideal setup, but if you’ve started too late or booked a last-minute ski holiday, just increase the number of sessions per week.
It’s never too late to get fit for the slopes and each session will pay off.
6. Have a plan in place in case of emergency
It’s important to make a note of a contact person in the event of an emergency, and ideally, not only carry these details with you but also leave this with the hotel reception or manager of your accommodation.
Most importantly, find out the emergency number of the mountain rescue service of the country you're visiting, in case you injure yourself on piste and no one is around to help. This may seem unlikely, as there usually are other skiers on the slopes ready to stop and help. But you would be surprised how quickly the slopes empty when the weather turns. And how easy it is in an unknown resort to go off-piste inadvertently.
If you suffer from a medical condition, you’ll already be aware that it is advisable to keep your own medical emergency details with you at all times so that emergency services can act faster.
7. Enjoy the experience of the anticipation
Check out the route map and get excited about almost being there. Plan which runs you want to take and set yourself a goal for which red or black runs you want to master by the end of your trip.
Also research what other winter activities might be happening near your resort where you might meet other skiers or solo travelers. Many resorts offer ice curling, snowshoe hikes and toboggan evenings which are all sociable fun activities and ideal if you are looking for a bit of fun company.
7 Helpful Tips to Planning a Solo Ski Holiday #travel #skiing
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Are you planning a solo trip to the snow? Have you got any tips to add? Tell us in the comments below!