Skiers Seek Bargains: Three Quarters Look To Cut Costs

06 December 2011

Skiers and snowboarders are slashing their holiday budgets this year, according to new research from Sainsbury’s Travel Money(1). The findings reveal that only one in five people (20%) who have previously skied or snowboarded plan to go this winter and of those almost three quarters (73%) plan to reduce the cost of their holiday.

More than a quarter of those planning to hit the slopes this winter (28%) plan to take packed lunches instead of eating in mountain restaurants and 26% plan to stay in cheaper accommodation. Nearly one in four (23%) say they’ll stay in a cheaper resort and almost one in five (19%) intend to go to a country where the cost of living and exchange rate lets their money go further.

Sainsbury’s Travel Money’s research(1) reveals that 16% of those planning to hit the slopes this winter will borrow ski clothes and equipment instead of buying or hiring it, and one in ten (9%) will purchase cheaper ski clothes from department stores or second-hand shops. Worryingly, 18% say they will not have ski lessons and 2% say they won’t take out travel insurance in order to save money.

David Barrett of Sainsbury’s Travel Money, said: “Skiing is an expensive sport and in a time of financial uncertainty it seems that many enthusiasts are being forced to either forgo their holiday or try to find ways of reducing the cost of their trip. Looking beyond the traditional ski destinations can provide a way of saving significant sums on a ski holiday. Skiers and snowboarders should also look to reduce the cost in other ways such as shopping around for the most competitive rates on their travel money and arrange it as far in advance as they can.”

He added: “Whilst budgeting and finding the best deal is important, consumers planning a skiing holiday should not scrimp on travel insurance. Should the 2% not planning to take out travel insurance have an accident and hurt themselves, medical fees could far outweigh the savings they have made on the holiday itself.”

Central and Eastern European resorts may provide the best value this winter, according to new research(2) conducted across ski resorts in 18 different countries from traditional favourites such as France and Switzerland to remote spots in Lebanon, Bolivia and Afghanistan. Sainsbury’s Travel Money’s study of the cost of two adults going away for one week including flights, transfers, a three or four star hotel stay and lift passes, reveals that Bjelolasica in Croatia offers the best value of the resorts studied at £1,024(3). This is closely followed by Kranjska Gora in Slovenia at £1,204 and Bansko in Bulgaria at £1,261.

By contrast, Hokkaido in Japan in the most expensive of the destinations studied, at over £5,200 for a week’s stay. This is followed by £4,224 at Faraya in Lebanon (which itself means ‘snow’) and the more traditional destinations of Whistler in Canada (£3,807) and Vail in the US (£3,735).

For those with more adventurous tastes, for around £1,345 two adults could visit Oukaimeden in Morocco, Africa’s highest ski resort where donkeys rather than shuttle buses wander back and forth between lifts. A relative bargain can also be found at the Mount Hermon Range in Israel, at £2,218 for the week, or even Bamiyan in Afghanistan at £2,308.

For £2,552 a couple could visit Ski Dubai, an indoor ski resort with 22,500 square metres of slopes and part of one of the largest shopping malls in the world. Although artificial, this option is much more snow-sure than Chacaltaya’s glacier in Bolivia, which since 2009 has been restricted to a 600-foot stretch that sometimes has sufficient snowfall for skiing. To visit there for a week it would cost in the region of £3,000.

Those who prefer staying closer to home could visit Aviemore, one of the first ski resorts to be established in Scotland, though it could still cost upward of £2,100 for two people for a week for those flying from London.

Sainsbury’s Travel Money offers a range of benefits including Travellers’ Cheques and the Cash Passport™ prepaid currency card. In addition, free next-day delivery to your billing address on foreign currency, if ordered before 2pm Monday to Thursday, is available for orders over £500.

To find out more about Sainsbury’s Travel Money log onto
Or call 0845 30 12 724. Customers can also get foreign currency instantly from our Travel Money Bureaux in selected Sainsbury’s stores.

Table One:  Ski destinations across the globe this Christmas
Ski resort Guide price for 2 adults including flights, transfers,  3 or 4 star hotel and 6-day lift passes, between Christmas and New Year(2)
Japan – Kiroro Hokkaido £5,271.55
Lebanon – Faraya £4,223.93
Canada – Whistler £3,807.10
USA  – Vail £3,734.70
Norway – Voss £3,508.31
Bolivia – Chacaltaya Glacier £3,002.11
UAE – Ski-Dubai £2,552.20
Switzerland – Verbier £2,527.71
Austria – St Anton £2,311.77
Afghanistan – Bamiyan £2,308.04
Italy – Cortina £2,301.92
Israel – Mount Hermon Range £2,218.04
France – Val d’Isere £2,186.44
Scotland – Aviemore £2,155.63
Morocco – Oukaimeden £1,345.31
Bulgaria – Bansko £1,260.55
Slovenia – Kranjska Gora £1,203.50
Croatia – Bjelolasica £1,024.36
Source:  Sainsbury’s Travel Money

Table Two:  Cost-cutting measures being employed by skiers and snowboarders this winter
Cost-cutting measure Percentage of skiers planning to do this
Take packed lunches on the slopes instead of eating in mountain restaurants 28%
Stay in cheaper accommodation 26%
Go to a cheaper resort 23%
Go to a country where your money goes further 19%
Not have ski lessons 18%
Borrow ski clothes/equipment instead of hiring or buying it 16%
Go for a shorter holiday 14%
Use a friend / family’s accommodation 11%
Buy cheaper ski clothes from department stores or second hand shops 9%
Leave the kids at home or with a family member 3%
Not take out travel insurance 2%
Other 3%
Source:  Sainsbury’s Travel Money


For further information, please contact:
Ian Morris / Charlotte Pascal
Citigate Dewe Rogerson
020 7282 1037 / 1021

(1) 2,024 GB adults were interviewed by ICM in an online survey between 23rd and 25th September 2011. Interviews were conducted across the country and the results have been weighted to the profile of all adults.  ICM is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.  Further information at
(2) Sainsbury’s Finance conducted research between 18th and 21st October 2011 from sources including:,,,,,,,,,,,,, and, and currencies converted using the currency converter on 7/11/11. Flights are from London airports and hotels are 3 or 4 star standard as far as possible. Every effort has been made to use comparable services in each country. Prices referenced are supposed to provide a typical guideline cost rather than indicate the cheapest or most expensive deals available.
(3) Prices taken from the same aforementioned sources between 18th and 21st October 2011

About Sainsbury’s Travel Money
Sainsbury’s Travel Money online and instore is provided by Travelex Agency Services Limited, registered number 4621879. Sainsbury’s Travel Money ordered by telephone is provided by Travelex Currency Services Limited, registered number 03797356. Registered office for both companies: 65 Kingsway, London WC2B 6TD.

Sainsbury’s Travel Money offers a range of benefits including very competitive exchange rates, foreign currency, travellers cheques and the Cash Passport™ prepaid currency card (only available in store).
In addition, free next-day delivery to your billing address, if ordered by 2pm Mon-Thurs, is available for orders over £500. It also rewards Nectar Card holders with preferential exchange rates on Euros and US Dollars transactions made at Sainsbury’s in-store Travel Money Bureaux.
About Sainsbury’s Cash Passport
Sainsbury’s Travel Money offers the Cash PassportTM with no ATM fees(1). The card allows you to pre-load money onto the card and you can choose from six different foreign currencies, including Euro and US Dollar, plus Pounds Sterling. It is Chip and PIN protected and offers a 24/7 Global Emergency Assistance service with free replacement fund up to available balance on the card. The card is not linked to your personal bank account. Travelex Cash Passport is issued by and remains the property
of R. Raphael & Sons plc. Registered no. 1288938. Registered office: Albany Court Yard,47/48 Piccadilly, London W1J 0LR.

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