Now that autumn is quickly descending around us, it’s time to start thinking about autumn and winter travels.

Thomas and I went on our first ski trip last year and absolutely loved it. Because it was our first ski trip, we spent a lot of time researching and planning, So, I wanted to share what we learned through the experience so that you can put our tips to use when planning your own trip.

Find a destination that suits your ski ability

If you’re a complete beginner to skiing you’re going to want to go somewhere there are plenty of novice and beginner slopes. Equally, if you’re a bit more advanced you’ll want to find a destination suited to you. There’s absolutely no point booking a trip somewhere where the slopes are too difficult for your ability. Who wants to spend the entire trip terrified and going down slopes that are too hard for them? Not me!

When researching potential destinations you can easily check what type of slopes they have online. All the ski resorts have websites with all of the information you need to make an informed decision.

Also, no matter what your ski ability, it can be a good idea to book ski lessons or just a refresher course to start off. You’ll get experience and knowledge from local instructors who know the slopes best. Even if you’re a confident skiier, they’ll be able to give you some tips on how to improve and some advice based on the slopes that are there.
how to plan your first ski trip

Make a smart packing list 

As it was my first ever ski trip, I spent a considerable amount of time wondering what I’d need to pack. How many layers would I need? Did I really need thermals? What would I wear for apres ski? All the information I could find online was conflicting too, which really didn’t help.

After my trip, I put together a fairly detailed packing list that you can find here.

My main piece of advice would be to check the temperatures for daytime of the place you’re going. This will determine whether you’ll want to pack thermals and loads of layers more than anything else. Just because you’re going to a destination where there’s snow dozens mean it’s going to be absolutely baltic. Plus, when you’re skiing and moving around you’ll be warmer than you otherwise would be.

Oh, and pack ibuprofen, because you’ll almost certainly end up with sore legs at some point!

how to plan your first ski trip

Research your destination 

No two ski resorts are the same. They vary wildly and you’ll want to make sure you pick one that’s going to suit you. 

For example, if you’re travelling on a bit of a budget, there are plenty of ski resorts you’re going to want to avoid. Some ski resorts are astronomically expensive in terms of eating out, going out for drinks and other general things when you get there. Equally, if you aren’t limited cash-wise then there’ll be lots of destinations that’ll suit you. 

Spend plenty of time researching online to ensure your chosen destination is suited to your needs. For our first ski trip, we picked a fairly budget-friendly destination in Bulgaria. This worked for us as we didn’t want to spend thousands of pounds on our trip in case we got there and didn’t actually like it! We didn’t know if we were going to love it or hate it as it was our first time, so didn’t want to waste a tonne of cash finding out. 

Also, check how far it is from the airport to your ski resort. Ski transfers can be notoriously long as you move from the airport into the mountains. It’s not uncommon for transfers to be 2-4 hours, so be prepared for that.

planning first ski trip

Do you have any tips for people planning their first ski trip?