Ski Australia’s Snowfields On a Budget

in Australia

Winter’s only just begun, but already Australia’s snow fields are enjoying steady falls.

Taking advantage of the thick white powder can prove expensive, but there are a few ways to cut the costs of your skiing adventure.

The most luxurious ski resorts often come with luxury price tags, but there are a few affordable options to be found on the snow fields. The acclaimed backpackers chain YHA has two snowy locations; one in Thredbo, New South Wales, and the other in Victoria’s Mt Buller.

The Thredbo YHA is located in the center of the skiing village, a convenient stumbling distance from the restaurants and pubs. Twin rooms start from $68, but if you bring some mates you could pay as little as $27.50 for a four-share dormitory. You’ll find the Mt Buller YHA a stone’s throw from the chairlift, so you can literally ski to your front door. It’s a little more expensive with rates starting from $79 for a six-bunk room, but still much cheaper than anything else you’ll find in the area.

Another option is to stay a little further from the ski fields. While you might need to forgo your sleep-in to get an early run at the slopes, you’ll save a pretty penny. Consider Jindabyne when skiing at Thredbo or Perisher, Dinner Plain if you want to hit Mount Hotham, and Mount Beauty when skiing Falls Creek.

A snowboarder at Thredbo, Australia

A snowboarder at Thredbo, Australia

When it comes to accommodation rates, timing is everything. While you’ll pay through the nose in August, June and September prices are much more reasonable, even if the snow isn’t quite as impressive. You’ll also save money by traveling through the week, rather than weekends.

It’s tempting to invest in skis, snowboards, and outfits to match, but unless you’re considering regular snow holidays hiring the kit may be a better financial decision. Or if you want a ski job in Australia then you might buy gear too. If you do want to own your own, you’ll be surprised at the bargains you’ll find on eBay or in second-hand stores. It also pays to ask around, as the closets of your friends may have everything you need.

Lift tickets are a necessary expense, but there are still ways to save cash here too. Look for early-bird specials before the start of the season, discounted rates at the start and end of the season, and half-day tickets if you prefer a sleep in or tend to tire in the afternoon. You can also save money by visiting the smaller slopes. Mt Baw Baw in Victoria and Selwyn in New South Wales offer very cheap rates for their fields, which are mostly made up of beginner runs. That won’t suit if you’re a regular snow bunny, but novices will be very happy here.

While not always the most economical solution, it can pay to look out for package deals. If you want to stay at the best accommodation, and ski the best slopes in Oz, you’ll probably save money with these all-inclusive offers.

[Image Source: SnappedUp/Flickr]

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