What To Pack For A Skiing Holiday

It’s finally time for you to go on that long-awaited winter holiday. You’ve already picked the best ski resort for your getaway and can’t wait to hit the slopes.

You've been reading up on the details and you have a plan, but some questions linger in your mind like:

And the list goes on and on!

It is not just about finding the best ski holiday deals. And it is not just about choosing the resorts with great slopes and snow. It's also about packing the necessary items that you might need during the ski break for a comfortable experience on and off the slopes.

This guide is all about the different things that you might want to take with you when going on a ski holiday. It can seem like there are a million things that you need to bring along and you may get overwhelmed. Hopefully, this article will help narrow down your packing list.

In a nutshell, you need to carry the following essentials before embarking on your epic skiing adventure:

  1. Essential Travel Documents
  2. Ski Equipment
  3. Winter Clothing
  4. Basic Non-Ski Winter Clothing
  5. Toiletries and Selfcare Effects
  6. Extra Accessories

Essential Travel Documents

Every skiing trip often begins with – you guessed it – traveling. When you embark on a skiing trip, especially to international destinations, you need to make sure all your bases are covered. There are so many variables that need to be taken into consideration for the trip to be a success. 

Chances are, you may forget something, for example, an important document that ruins your entire travel experience. While that can be a major setback, it becomes a lesson for your next trip and a story you’re not too keen on retelling. And it happens to the best of us.

Before embarking on your winter destination, you need to make careful considerations about what documents and travel essentials to carry and which to leave at home. However, without any exceptions, you need to carry with you the following essential documents and travel essentials:

1 Passport and Travel Visa

This one is a no-brainer but it can also be easy to forget during the excitement of the upcoming trip. Whether you’re traveling domestically or internationally, you need some form of proper identifying documents. 

Ensure that all your travel passports are valid for at least 6 months ahead of the trip and are valid from the date of issue. You may carry with you multiple versions of the documentation and sometimes copies may also work (although you need to check with your travel agent).

You may also consider bringing your birth certificate as sometimes if you lose your passport, it may help identify you as the citizen of the country to which you claim citizenship.

2 Local Currency

It can be a real hustle when you’re trying to buy something and you don’t have the local denomination. While some service providers may consider accepting cash using your native currency, it may be wise to have your cash converted beforehand. Often, it is easier and cheaper to exchange currency at home.

3 Credit/Debit Cards

These are the better alternatives to carrying wads of cash which can be cumbersome and present a security risk. Remember to inform your bank before traveling.

4 Ski / Travel insurance / EHIC card

This is an absolute necessity when traveling. In some instances, you may be required to present one or all of these before you can be granted entry. 

The EHIC (European Health Insurance Card) card is usually a must-have before gaining entry into a European ski resort but it is essential to have it topped up with ski insurance.

5 Prescription or Regular Medication

Ensure to pack enough prescription medication to last you the entire duration of your trip. This is because the drugs may not be available at your destination. In addition, have a photo of your essential medication so that if you run out, you could order from the local drug stores if in stock.

Pro Tip: It can be useful to take a photo of all the documents you’re carrying and back up the photo to a cloud service or email it to yourself. This is useful and acts as a manifest to help you’ll know if something is missing or misplaced.

Ski Equipment

This will usually be the first thing you start packing as soon as the holiday bug hits you. If you’re an avid skier, you know exactly what to pack. However, if you’re a beginner, our guide will be of great help.

Chances are, an experienced skier will carry their equipment with them. For beginners, however, it may be best to hire your equipment at the resort instead of investing in expensive gear right from the outset. Hiring gear also helps beginners figure out if skiing is their thing and which style of skiing is best for them before they commit to buying their equipment. However, for items that require a precise fit like helmets or ski boots, you might consider investing in your own.

If you intend to hire the equipment, it would be best to check with the ski resort whether they have the equipment you need in stock. This ensures that you can get everything you need before you hit the slopes.

That said, the following ski gear is essential:

Ski Winter Clothing

The kind of winter clothing that you pack for your ski trip could make or break your vacation. Ski winter wear is a unique combination of different clothing, each serving a specific purpose to keep you comfortable as you shred powder.

Whether you’re an expert or a beginner, you must be ready for any prevailing weather conditions on the mountain. A great skiing experience on the slopes is pegged on dressing right for maximum comfort.

Dressing right for the slopes involves layering up, which involves putting on the right fabric for each layer. Ensure to follow a three-layer rule to help you stay comfortable and active as you hit the slopes. The three layers consist of specific materials that serve to protect you from the elements and include:

  1. The Base or Wicking layer – This layer consists of long underwear made of a material such as wool. Wool is a great material whose advantages include wicking away sweat and keeping you warm. This layer is your first defense against freezing ambient temperatures.
  2. The Mid/Insulating layer – This layer consists of a material that traps the body temperature keeping you warm. It should be thin enough to serve this purpose better. The best material for this should be a mid-weight fleece or wool.
  3. The Outer layer – This layer should be a snug fit and directly protects you from the weather elements. These exteriors are often made from multilayered nylon known as GORE-TEX. The shells are also made from tightly woven fabrics reinforced with a coating or laminate. These materials provide robust protection from snow, wind, and moisture. 

The three layers help you adapt to the current weather conditions and allow you to add or remove layers depending on your exertion level.

The basic clothing to carry on your ski trip includes:

Basic Clothing (Non-Ski Clothing)

As you pack appropriately for the slopes, don’t forget to pack clothing to wear off the slopes. In as much as your ski jacket may double as an all-purpose jacket, a winter coat may be preferable. You also need to look good when hitting the bars and restaurants and meeting new friends.

Some of the basic clothing that you can carry include:

Toiletries and Selfcare Effects

These are easy to forget and yet are essential items. It is often a bummer when you have to pay a hefty price for an item that costs less. Can you imagine paying $8 for a toothbrush? Some effects such as sunscreen are easy to overlook. However, note that the sun up on the mountain can be quite strong due to the effect of the rarefied air. in addition, the snow acts as a reflector which can lead to a serious sunburn. 

Some of the essential items that you can pack include:

Extra Accessories

Some of the accessories that you carry for your ski trip include:

How to Pack Your Gear

After you’ve identified all the things you need to carry and have created a manifest to help you keep track of each item, it is essential to know how to pack all your items into manageable luggage(s). While it can be harder to pack your stuff and still stay within the weight limit allowed by most airlines, you can learn how pros do it.

Some of the methods to help you get organized and pack your gear appropriately for your trip include:

Final Thoughts

There is no doubt that skiing is a fantastic way to spend time with your friends and family. You may not realize it but there are tons of heated debates when it comes to deciding what should be packed in your luggage when you're heading off on a ski holiday.

Beginners will want to consider packing some items that everyone should have in their luggage, including skis, poles, and goggles. The more experienced will want to equip themselves with more gear, from boots and skis to avalanche rescue equipment. However, the best place to start when deciding what items you should take with you on your next ski holiday is by selecting the destination you're going to visit and working out its terrain profile. This will give you an idea of what kind of skiing experiences you can expect at different resorts in the area.

Planning a winter getaway can be a daunting task. However, Brealpa can help you plan the perfect and unforgettable skiing and snowboarding holiday. From our website you’ll learn: