Whether you’re a seasoned veteran of the slopes or an excited first-timer, there’s bound to be one or two essential things – other than just that all-important passport – that might slip your mind when packing for your skiing (or snowboarding) holiday. And if this is your first time, there may be some things you wouldn’t have even considered needing in the first place.
To avoid that irritating ‘I know I’m forgetting something…’ feeling, here’s your ultimate checklist of what to include in your suitcase before you head off to the airport, including why you need it.
- Skis/Snowboard. You won’t get very far down the slopes with one of these! You’ll probably need a bag for these too.
- Poles. Again – essential to get anywhere on your skis.
- Rucksack. Even if you’re packing everything in a backpack, you’ll need something smaller to keep your essentials with you while you’re out and about. No good getting all the way to the top of a huge hill and realising you’ve left something important back at your Freedom Ski Morzine chalet.
- Small pack of tools. Just in case you run into trouble and need to make a quick repair.
- Transceiver, beacon and shovel. An emergency kit like this one is very important if you’re planning on heading off piste. It could save your life in an avalanche.
- Water bottle. Though you’re surrounded by icy winds and snowy ground, skiing/snowboarding is thirsty work. You’ll be surprised how hot and sweaty you feel after a while, so having some water handy will help you stay hydrated.
- Helmet. Even if you’re a seasoned skier/snowboarder – you may end up flat on your back. A helmet is, of course, essential for safety.
- Hats. A cosy beanie is the best fit under your helmet.
- Goggles. Again, an important safety precaution when snow and wind are flying into your face.
- Ski jacket and trousers. Make sure you invest in some waterproof outerwear tailor-made for skiing/snowboarding.
- Neck warmer. Something you’re very likely to forget! Make sure your neck isn’t left exposed to the freezing winds.
- Thermals. Tops and bottoms. Bring a couple of pairs to last you the trip.
- Ski/snowboard boots. You’ll need a pair of these as well as your normal everyday shoes to wear on your skis/snowboard.
- Ski/snowboard socks. A few nice, thick woolly pairs to keep the cold out of your extremities.
- Gloves. Again – to stave off any chance of frostbite in those extremities. Make sure you get a waterproof pair, too.
- Sunglasses. You might not realise if this is your first trip, but it can get pretty sunny at high altitudes.
Obviously, you’ll need the usual holiday essentials like changes of clothes, books, toiletries and whatever you need to keep yourself entertained when you’re not on the slopes, but there are a couple of specific things that you’ll definitely need for a ski/snowboarding holiday.
- Sunscreen. Again – that sun can get surprisingly bright when you’re that high up! The snow is also very reflective, so keep your skin protected with some high SPF sunscreen.
- Snowchains. Important to remember if you’re going to be travelling by car.
- High energy snacks. You’re going to be using up a lot of energy, so bring a few of these to stash in your rucksack to keep your blood-sugar levels up.