With the first snow of winter covering higher slopes through the Alps, ski fans are snapping up discounts of more than 30 per cent off brochure prices on early-season holidays either side of Christmas.
And with the downturn hitting harder outside London, some of the best ski deals include regional departures: Ski Total offers seven nights’ catered chalet stay at Chalet Hermann, Solden, Austria from £448 (saving £200) from Birmingham on December 15. Seven nights’ catered chalet stay at Chalet Hotel Montpelier in Verbier is £438, saving a whopping £260, from Manchester on December 16.
Ski Total has cut £260 off seven-night catered chalet stays in Verbier, the top Swiss resort, from December 16, bringing the price down to £399, including return Southampton-Geneva flights (other departure airports available), transfers, and catered accommodation with Wifi and buffet breakfast, afternoon tea, and five-course evening meals with wine on six nights.
At highly-regarded St Anton, Austria, which also had its first snowfall last weekend, Esprit Ski offers a catered chalet stay in Chalet Markus for £325 (saving £400). A family of four, with two under-12s, could get the week for about £1,300, saving £741.
Crystal Ski managing director Simon Cross says: “Skiers have become much more value conscious in recent years and in the last couple of weeks we’ve seen strong bookings for Austria, Italy and Slovenia, which offer tremendous value for money for savvy skiers.
“Christmas and New Year as well as February half-term have sold well – and current trends in North America suggest more skiers crossing the Atlantic this winter than last. A big favourite is Whistler, Canada, which opened its ski area early, and good snowfalls across Colorado, Utah and California suggest bumper seasons there too.”
The Post Office Travel Money Ski Resort Report tips Italy as the top value option for 2012-13 because leading resorts like Livigno have slashed the cost of ski passes, equipment hire, ski school, meals and drinks by about 10 per cent.
The survey compared in-resort living costs in five Italian resorts with those in Austria, France and Switzerland – and Italy’s prices were more than 30 per cent below those in Switzerland, although the survey confirms Bansko, Bulgaria, as the cheapest ski destination in Europe with Soldeu, Andorra, as the best for value.
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Weather for Yorkshire
Monday 20 May 2013
Temperature: 10 C to 18 C
Wind Speed: 16 mph
Wind direction: North
Temperature: 8 C to 14 C
Wind Speed: 14 mph
Wind direction: North