Reporting Jay Lloyd
How about Tiffany quality at coupon clipper prices? Bargain fever has hit the nearby slopes, and discount skiing and snowboarding have become the norm. That is, if you know where and when to look.
Close to home, if you’re 70 and over, the ticket is on the house at Bear Creek Mountain, Blue Mountain and Shawnee. And lift tickets are only $5 on weekdays at Spring Mountain and $10 at Jack Frost and Big Boulder. But how about a break for the rest of you? – Jay Lloyd
If there’s a 4th grader in the family, (s)he skis free at this popular Montgomery County ski spa. But you have to sign up by January 31st or “free” goes up to $50 (which is still a good deal).
In fact, discounts are offered throughout the week at Spring Mountain, and everyone gets a day. There are weekly $18 specials for men and women–that should cover most of us. There are weekly specials for college students, high school students and business people. Plus, Spring offers senior discounts like the popular $5 lift ticket for the 70-plus age group.
BEAR CREEK MOUNTAIN RESORT
Active and retired military members, their spouses and their children get a $10 break on extended-day tickets at the family-friendly Bear Creek Mountain. The same offer goes for police, fire and EMS personnel. And on Mondays, college students can score a $20 ticket while ski club members are able to pick up $15 tickets – sharp discounts from the midweek extended-day price of $47.
The easiest way to buy lift tickets to ski or ride at Blue Mountain is online. It beats the ticket lines and serves up a discount–most tickets come with a $4 break. Meanwhile, active duty military members can ski Blue at a $10 discount.
JACK FROST/BIG BOULDER
College students get a break every Wednesday night this winter with $25 lift tickets at Big Boulder. And you don’t even need equipment; ski and snowboard rentals for the college crowd ring up at $10. Active and retired military, spouses and kids under 18 sound off for $25 tickets during the week and $30 on weekends at both Jack Frost and Big Boulder.
Off the slopes, chow down with a buffet meal for $2.50.
Shawnee Mountain in the eastern Poconos has posted a midweek “Miser 5 Pak” that serves up five lift tickets for $125. It’s structured to allow the buyer to use it on five trips to mountain, one trip for up to 5 family members or a combination of the two. Single midweek tags regularly go for $45. Also, check out the Shawnee website for discount coupons that cover lessons, rentals, multi-day tickets and specials.
The best deal at the lively Camelback Mountain is the $49 “Camelcard” that can be bought online. It gives the holder 50% discounts for night skiing tags as well as for midweek day tickets. To sweeten the pot, every third ticket is free. And, Camelback is also offering a $99 “Triple Ticket” card that cuts the cost of lift ticket to $33. That’s a hefty slice off the respective $49 and $59 midweek and weekend tolls.
These are discounts offered by the resorts themselves. However, a savvy ski shopper will find bargains lurking off the mountain as well. Virtually every ski shop celebrates “customer appreciation days” that feature discounted lift tickets or even “demo day” trips to a nearby mountain. Many suburban recreation departments organize low cost ski trips and offer reduced price tickets, too. Look for radio and TV promotions that cut as much as 50% off the price of a ticket. And of course, joining a ski club comes with a cornucopia of discounts. Check it out.
The Pennsylvania Ski Areas Association sponsors a 4th and 5th grade free skiing program and hosts a $5 discount coupon for its 22 member resorts. That can be found at: www.skipa.com