Ski Trips-Prices? Best time of year?

Old Oct 3rd, 2005, 02:12 PM
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Ski Trips-Prices? Best time of year?

What is the best time of year for skiing in Europe? Is mid-december too early? Would one area be better than another for the early season. (we have mainly been looking at Austria and Switzerland)
Also, I am trying to find cheap ski packages. I am open to any resort area. Could you recommend any web-sites /travel agents that have a decent ski trip on a shoe string budget. Thanks so much
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Old Oct 3rd, 2005, 02:18 PM
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Personally, I think March is the best because the days aren't as cold and there's usually plenty of snow. January and February can be bitterly cold or bring in heavy snowfalls that can hinder the skiing conditions. Mid December is only good if you go high enough in the mountains. A lot of the lower skiing areas don't have enough snow mid-December.
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Old Oct 4th, 2005, 12:53 AM
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Mgtr - If you want cheap in mid December you might want to consider the Dolomites.

Resorts in the Val Gardena offer great deals between 5-20 December for the start of the ski season.

If there is not enough natural snow they use the canons, so skiing is guaranteed.

There are 2 World Championship races in this area the week before Christmas.

Steve

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Old Oct 4th, 2005, 01:15 AM
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Yes, you have to keep in mind that Europe is located at a higher latitude than the US, which means that one month either side of the winter solstice, the light is low and so are the temperatures! For France, you should avoid early Feb-early March, when French school vacations are in progress. March is usually considered to be the best option, as schuler emphasised it. For more info, you can log on skifrance.fr (clicking on the British flag to get the English version), it's a consortium of all French ski resorts.
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Old Oct 4th, 2005, 11:55 PM
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Most resorts in Austria and Switzerland are owned by families. A lot of these small properties do not corporate with travel agents.

Best way to find a package is to contact the local visitor information center. They have the best overview regarding packages and they know, which resorts offers the packages.

End of November until mid dezember is early bird season. This is the season with the lowest price-level, but sometimes there is lack of snow and not all slopes are open.

The whole march is high season and you will have to pay much more for accommodation and skipasses. On the other side you will prop. see more snow than in early december (but snow level varies from year to year).

I recommend to concentrate to the glacier resorts, if you are looking for 100% snow gurantee,
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Old Oct 5th, 2005, 12:10 AM
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Glacier skiing? If so, I'd recommend Soelden, Austria. They offer quite a bit for glacier skiing.

Zermatt also has glacier skiing but I've never been there. Saas Fee has glacier skiing too but it's not a very big slope. However, the village is very nice.
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Old Oct 5th, 2005, 04:18 PM
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Does anyone have recommendations of web-sites or travel agents in which I could find the resorts mentioned above (Val Gardena, Solena)
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Old Oct 5th, 2005, 04:18 PM
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sorry-Soelden
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Old Oct 5th, 2005, 11:24 PM
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Try with

http://www.soelden.com/main/EN/WI/in...thod=main.html

www.val-gardena.com/?pagid=4&newlang=eng
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Old Oct 6th, 2005, 12:25 AM
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Mgtr - Here's the official Val Gardena website:

http://www.valgardena.it/eng/page4.html

http://www.valgardena.it/eng/page38.html

Some other links to whet your appetite:

http://www.ifyouski.com/features/dolomites/

http://www.valgardena.it/eng/page120.html

http://www.valgardena.it/eng/page182.html

I'm already planning my next trip

Hope this helps ...

Steve
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Old Oct 6th, 2005, 12:55 PM
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When looking for airfare what do you think the would be the cheapest/closest major airport to fly in from the USA
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Old Oct 6th, 2005, 01:12 PM
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I've been coordinating trips for a group from the Boston area for the last several years and spend a lot of time searching airfares. For the area you're interested in skiing, the lowest commercial fares from BOS are usually into Munich. For the French resorts, Lyon usually is the cheapest. That's a big generalization, of course, and other departure cities will likely be different as well. A little time spent on Travelocity or Orbitz with a map on hand will probably tell you what you need to know.
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Old Oct 6th, 2005, 04:27 PM
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We are mainly looking at Val Gardena. After some research it seems that it would would be a good match. What would be the best airport to fly into?
Also are there any spec. reccomendations on (cheap) hotels or B&B's. There seem to be so many choices.
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Old Oct 7th, 2005, 12:59 AM
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The nearest airports are Bolzano or Innsbruck, but I usually fly into Verona or Venice from England.

From the U.S your best options for a direct flight might be Munich - as Flyfish says - or Venice.

There are many excellent budget B&B's in the Val Gardena. I stayed there last year for 8 days (- for the price of 6) - for less than € 200 - in 3* accm.

Many B&B's & hotels offer this 33% discount in early-mid December - up to about 22 Dec.

The main ski resort is Selva, but I usually stay in nearby Ortisei from preference. It's well connected by ski-bus with Selva (20 mins) and Santa Cristina (10 mins).

Here are some B&B's I've used and can recommend in Ortisei:

www.hotelvillapark.com
www.snaltnerhof.it
www.garniwalter.com

Some Ortisei B&B's also include free entry to the new swimming pool in the village.

Let me know if I can be of more help ...

Steve
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Old Oct 13th, 2005, 11:01 AM
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I skied Cortina this year with the family February and paid 5,000 for air, 7 nights hotel, transfers and Breakfast/dinner for 2 adults and 2 kids age 15 and 9. We went Presidents week which was mid February. This year we booked Innsbruck Austria for the same price going February Presidents week 2006 for the same price w/half board and air and tranfers. Cortina price was 7,000 this year so we decided to go to Austria. I would look at packages that include 1/2 board which is breakfast dinner. We used a ski tour group Moguls mountain. They give you a choice of hotels, air and transfers. I found the ski experience at Cortina fantastic. I would go back but the cost was much higher. For value Banff Canada is still a good deal.
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