30 years of experience in winter sports holidays have enabled us learn one or two lessons. One of them is definitely: How to pack bags for your well-deserved winter holiday, without forgetting the most essential things.
Although most airlines restrict the maximum weight of hold luggage to 15-20kgs and bags have to be packed more economically than one would like, it should not be a problem to include the most important items for your holiday.
To help you with your selection, we have created the ultimate skiing holiday packing list with our top 10 tips, which will ensure you have everything you need and help to avoid spending a fortune in resort.
Of course you will need your ski or board equipment (unless you intend to hire in resort)! Either way you will need: Waterproof, but breathable ski trousers, goggles, sunglasses, ski gloves, a ski helmet, ski boots and other protective equipment, if necessary. It is also advisable to pack thermal layers (fleeces or thin woollen jumpers, which can be worn on top) into your bag.
Good basic clothes, a long-sleeved top plus long underwear, are the perfect base for any ski outfit. Ideally, you should always have two pairs of basic ski clothes in your bag – especially if they are made from man-made fibres.
But why do you need two pairs? Mainly, because you will need one to wear, while the other one is being washed, as this material is highly likely to become whiffy quite fast.
If you prefer to renounce washing during your holiday, you might want to pack 3 pairs of base layers in your bag. Wool-based base layers tend to smell less quickly. However, it is often more difficult to keep these dry. For a week you will probably get along with one pair, but to be on the safe side, I would still recommend 2 pairs.
The right choice is really important for your feet too: After a long day on the slopes there is nothing better than to put on fresh and cosy underwear and socks.
Therefore, you should bring as many socks and underwear as possible. In addition to ordinary socks, actual ski socks are a must! Particularly if you rent boots (which have already been used by many other skiers and boarders) you will ideally need a pair of socks for each day of your trip.
So in general, it’s a good idea to have a pair of socks and underwear for every day of your journey in your bag – plus a few spare pairs as a backup. If you have the opportunity to wash your clothes during your trip, then three pairs for one week should suffice.
This is not necessary, if you pack some travel wash in your bag. Your socks and underwear can be hand washed in a few minutes.
Leave most of your regular clothes at home. One or two pairs of trousers, a couple of sweaters, T-shirts and tops are more than enough. Really? Why?
During your skiing holidays you will be wearing ski clothes from morning to late afternoons. If you are going to après ski huts or bars after your skiing day, you will wear ski clothes even longer. Thus, you will have only a fraction of your vacation time to wear normal clothes, which means that it is absolutely sufficient to have a only small selection on hand.
Does that sound familiar? You just came back from your winter holidays and everybody is approaching you with the words: “Oh, you really got a tan”.
Unfortunately, in most cases, they don’t mean ‘a nice tan’, but rather ‘a significant sunburn’.
As the air is thinner in the mountains, and the effect of the sunshine reflecting from the snow is even stronger, you should always have enough sun cream packed in your bag. This, of course, can also be bought locally – but why pay inflated resort prices when you would get three times the amount for the same price at home?
In addition, dry lips are a common problem too during skiing holidays. So pack enough lip balm to avoid the problems caused by the dry mountain air.
Although many guests rather prefer the products of their favourite brands, in luxury hotels it is very common that shampoo, shower gel and body lotion are available for free. Unfortunately however, cheaper hotels, quite often lack these amenities. So you should not rely on the hotel providing these ‘freebie’ personal hygiene items. Generally only hand soap is available in the room.
In addition to your toothbrush and toothpaste, as well as the usual tubes and ointments, you should also remember to pack headache pills in your ski holidays bag.
For all among you who have already forgotten: Countries on the European mainland use different plugs to the UK! You can simply avoid asking your fellow travellers or the hotel staff, whether you can borrow an adapter to charge your phone or laptop by getting one yourself in advance. This will also save you money and time in most cases.
If you do not have your own adapter yet, you can buy it at your local electronics store, at major supermarkets or at the airport. It is worth investing a pound or two more and buying a multi-purpose adapter from the outset for all international plug types.
Skiing days can stress your body and especially your muscles. In order to regenerate your muscles, there is nothing better than to swim and splash around in a hotel pool in the evening or to simply enjoy the relaxing effect of a whirlpool.
If your choice of accommodation does not have a pool, most ski resorts have a public swimming pool, which can be used for reasonable prices by any tourist. Especially when you have children with you, a visit to the swimming pool is a wonderful opportunity to round off the skiing day, or to fill the time between end of ski school and dinner.
Among other things mentioned in our skiing holiday packing list, remember to buy a certain amount in foreign currency beforehand online, at your bank or your local post office, or a prepaid foreign currency card in order to avoid the very unfavorable exchange rates at the airport or on the ferry.
Of course, you should not only think about your wallet, but also passport, credit and debit cards. In addition, of course, you must ensure you have suitable and reliable ski insurance in place, so you can enjoy your holiday in peace.
So what are the most important things, you should have packed in your bag for your next skiing holiday?
First of all, of course, your ski equipment / outer skiwear along with your ski gloves, a ski helmet and ski boots etc. Furthermore, you will need good basic clothes, such as a long-sleeved top plus long underwear. You will also need a certain amount of under clothes, especially socks and underwear –which should be packed for every day of your journey. And if you can’t pack fresh clothes for every day (maybe because your stay is a little longer) then you should definitely consider packing travel wash into your bag.
Furthermore, you should not pack too many ordinary clothes for your skiing trip, as you will be on piste for most of the day when you will be wearing your ski clothes.
To avoid sunburn and dry lips, you should also bring along enough sun cream and lip care products, whilst not forgetting your toiletries.
If you want to charge your phone and other electronic devices regularly, it is also a good idea to pack a plug adapter for European plugs into your bag. And to enjoy the hotel or resort leisure facilities after an exciting day of skiing, you should definitely remember to pack your swimwear. Last but not least the most important documents that will make your holidays successful: remember to pack your wallet, passport, credit and debit cards.