Friday, November 16, 2012

5 Places to Ski on a Budget

If you love skiing, you know that the best part of your trip is the time you spend on the slopes. So why spend too much on lodging. Some opt for low cost motels, but you can actually find vacation rentals for about the same price as low-cost motels, and you’ll get benefits only vacation rentals can offer, such as full kitchens and perhaps even a private hot tub. So if it's you and a bunch of slope buddies, book a less expensive condo at one of these areas and spend an extra day or two doing what you love—skiing or snowboarding.

Here are five ski areas where you can find rooms for about $60 a night. (These don’t work for you? Then check out Perfect Places for even more options.)

WinterPark. One of Colorado's most popular ski areas, winter park boasts over a million visitors a year. Because it's so popular, you'll find plenty of shopping, conveniences and amenities to keep you entertained when you're not skiing. Fly into Denver and ride an Amtrak train for a truly stress free time.

Vail. Ski Magazine ranked Vail as the 2nd best ski destination in North America. It also boasts world-class spas, shopping and restaurants. It’s a hotbed for the rich and famous, many with permanent condos and home in the area. With an abundance of lavish spenders, you’re sure to find 1st-class things to do. Not to mention 1st class skiing. If you can't find an accommodation in the $60 range, you can certainly find plenty for around $100 a night--still a bargain. Plus, Vail is one of the most family-friendly ski areas in the world, and it's celebrating it's 50th anniversary during the 2012-2013 ski season.

Killington, Vermont. Killington has the largest vertical drop in New England (3,000+ feet), 141 trails, 22 lifts and extends across six mountain peaks. It has one of the longest ski seasons on the East coast (most often the longest) and is simply one of the best areas on the East coast for skiing.

Steamboat Springs.  Located in Northwest Colorado, Steamboat is a complete mountain range with six peaks and ridges offering outstanding skiing. It's about 3 hours from Denver by car. You can also reach it by air with direct flights from seven major airports. With the money you save on lodging, treat yourself to a flight directly into Steamboat.

Tahoe. While Tahoe may conjure up images of celebrities and jet setters, you can still ski and stay for cheap, if you look. The Tahoe area's easy to navigate and offers some of the best skiing in the world, so why not save on your room and spend the extra cash rubbing elbows with the rich and famous in Heavenly village?