Hawaii Mom Blog: Top 10: Tips for First-Time Skiers at Whistler

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October 13, 2016

Top 10: Tips for First-Time Skiers at Whistler

Even though Fall has just begun, it's not too early to start planning a trip to Whistler!  The ski season typically starts in a few weeks!

For our first trip to Whistler, we wanted the boys to experience skiing, and after a lot of research, we decided ski lessons would be the best option.

For someone who has never been to Whistler and never skied before, it was quite a learning experience.  Thankfully we were traveling with another family, and our friend also did a lot of research and provided me with some great tips for first-time-skiers.

So if you're a first time Whistler visitor and/or first-time skier, here are a few helpful tips:
  1. Seriously consider ski lessons if you/your kids have not skied before. The instructors at Whistler are so amazing, and they have the knowledge and patience needed to teach you/your kids the necessary skills. 
  2. Family lessons are great for a group of four with similar ability, and it's a fun bonding experience!
  3. Get fitted for skis and boots the evening before your ski lesson to avoid the morning rush. Allow plenty of time for rental fitting (for four of us it took almost an hour).
  4. If the fitter asks if you want to rent helmets, don't hesitate to say yes.  My kids fell a lot during their ski lessons, and even I fell backwards during our lesson, but luckily we all had helmets on. 
  5. Find the closest rental facility near your hotel, so you don't need to lug around all that gear for a long distance.
  6. If your hotel doesn't have a ski valet (our hotel, the Crystal Lodge and Suites, has a ski valet), check with the rental facility for a storage locker (most hotels will prohibit you from storing skis in your room).
  7. Don't forget to bring water and snacks, or money for hot chocolate and BeaverTails for apres-ski!
  8. If you plan to eat at the restaurants on the mountains or just take in the views during a break in or after your ski lesson, make sure you have a ski lock to lock up your skis on the available racks to prevent someone from walking off with them.
  9. Consider taking your regular boots in a backpack with you to your ski lesson.  Because you'll most likely use ski boot rentals, which are not specifically molded to your feet, it's very possible that for your feet, ankles, and shins will hurt - and I mean HURT!  The boots didn't seem to affect my kids much, but my feet were killing me (and my friends couldn't wait to rip off their boots either!). If I had known ahead of time how much they'd hurt, I would've taken my regular snow boots up to the mountain with me just so I could wear them after the ski lesson as we explored the mountains.
  10. If you feel your ski instructor did a great job, don't hesitate to tip (tipping isn't required, but it's a welcome gesture).

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