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Kids Skiing and Snowboarding – What Parents Must Know

Do you want to enjoy the ultimate winter experience? Making snowmen and throwing snowballs is only the beginning of the fun!

Hitting the slopes is a winter leisure activity not everyone gets to experience. Sunny, tropical Queensland doesn’t provide the environment required for a winter wonderland but you don’t have to miss out completely! You can take the kids skiing or snowboarding this year but consider the following before making your decision.

Winter holiday – all the important questions answered

Even though the rest of Australia wants to fly north for the warmer weather, Queenslanders find themselves in awe of fun snow photos and feel they are missing out. You don’t have to miss out but it doesn’t always come cheap to take kids skiing or snowboarding.

Accommodation – Ski resorts such as Perisher, Thredbo, Mt Buller and Jindabyne are great but they are expensive, particularly when you are taking the kids skiing. Resorts tend to fill up fast so get in early! It is also a good idea to check the weather report to make sure the weather is optimal.

Pack food – Ducking to the shops for a few things isn’t as easy as you think so purchase a few groceries before arriving and it will cut your costs dramatically. Make sure you have snacks, drinks and even some meals; there are shops and canteens open but they charge a premium for convenience.

Passes – Open up your wallet because a one day lift pass will set you back $125 per adult and $69 per child and that is even before you see your kids skiiing or snowboarding. *Beginners – Thredbo offers a beginners packages for both adults and children where you get your lift pass and group lesson for $134 adult / $98 child.

Lessons – Queenslanders typically only visit the snow annually whilst on holiday so it is advised that children take lessons each year to refresh their skills and knowledge. This will also assist them in keeping safe on the snow.

Group lessons per day for children are: 3-17yrs $102 per day or one hour private lesson is $164 (this does not include lift pass).*May vary depending on ski resort.

Kids ski gear – hire or buy

Children grow so fast that it doesn’t make sense to purchase new snow gear for them to use once a year. You can hire gear for your whole family at a fraction of the price.

Kid’s snowboards, boots and bindings – Rent: $33, Buy: $300.

Kid’s skis and poles – Rent: $30. Buy: skis – $350, poles: $30 each.

Ultimately the choice is yours but when everything else is expensive this is an easy way to save some money.

Skis or snowboards – Which is best for kids?

There is no simple answer for this but if your children are younger, skiing is the easier option because they have more control over their movement and can stop whenever they like. They have more balance with skis due to their legs being on separate boards. If however your child is a little older (say 7+) and they have good coordination, snowboarding might be more fun. This requires a lot more endurance and young children don’t typically have enough stamina required to keep riding. If your child skateboards, this will help them maintain their skills in the off season.

If you’re looking for advice on how to choose the best skis for your family, this editorial has some great tips on what to look for when buying skis for beginners.

Watching all the kids skiing on the snowfields is enough to change your snow holiday desire into ‘book it now’. Childhood memories are created from winter vacations when snowmen are made, snowballs are thrown and triumph is achieved by your kids snowboarding.

Have you taken your kids skiing? What do you wish you knew before going?

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Janine Mergler

Janine Mergler is a veteran Queensland teacher, graduating from QUT with a BEd majoring in Social Sciences. After many years in the classroom, Janine moved on to academia. She has proudly trained new generations of teachers in her role as a lecturer at Queensland University of Technology Faculty of Education. She has also worked in the Queensland Government as an education specialist, developing education resources and delivering community awareness programs to help families conserve water. Currently she is the owner and editor of Families Magazine, a publication specifically targeted at parents who value a quality education for children.  Janine leads a team of professionals who write about family lifestyle, early childhood, schools and education information and family-friendly events.

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