Last week, the largest vacation rental search engine, HomeToGo, released its 2021 Ski Season Report detailing its findings on the 55 most affordable and expensive ski destinations in the United States. Here is what they found:
Most Expensive Destinations
The top of the list may not come entirely as a surprise. Alta, Vail, Aspen, Beaver Creek, and Deer Valley take the top five spots this year. Other top resorts include Telluride, Steamboat, Park City, Big Sky, and Stratton.
Most Affordable Destinations
The general trend is that skiing out west is the most expensive than out east. This year’s most affordable resorts are: Titus Mountain, Bridger Bowl, Mission Ridge, Bolton Valley, and Whiteface. Other affordable mentions include Sugarloaf, Mount Bohemia, Mad River Glen, Mad River Mountain, and Mount Baker.
For the full list of destinations ranked by HomeToGo, click here.
Types of Properties
HomeToGo data shows that cabins and vacation homes have increased 345% in their share of bookings while hotels are down 7% and apartments are down 12%. This is likely due to Covid-19 restricting many of the amenities offered by apartments and hotels and people wanting additional space and security.
Vacation homes and cabins also offer the full amenities of a traditional house, meaning that you can be fully self-sufficient there and not have to rely on going out to restaurants, bars, or other recreational spaces that are currently closed or heavily restricted.
Location Has Only Become That Much More Important
HomeToGo found that homes within half a mile of the ski hill are twice as likely to be booked as homes that are 1-2 miles away.
With traditional shuttle services, restaurants, and other ski destination services being dramatically scaled back if not eliminated this year because of Covid-19, being as close to the ski hill is that much more important. Being ski-in/ski-out or even within walking distance to the lifts allows for skiers to not have to rely on any other services while on vacation. HomeToGo also cites that being close to the hill allows skiers to have lunch at home since traditional on-hill dining options are limited or closed.
Duration of Stays
HomeToGo data also shows that this year that skiers are going on shorter trips this season. Last year, the average length of stay was 3-4 days, while this year it has dropped to only 2-3 days. This again is likely due to Covid-19 restrictions making travel to destinations more local and therefore for shorter amounts of time, as HomeToGo explains.
People are also booking much sooner than their date of departure. As HomeToGo reported, the time between booking and check-in has dropped 42% compared to last year. This is also likely due to Covid-19 and the continually changing travel restrictions and uncertainty, forcing people to book closer to their planned vacations.
With Covid-19 almost hitting the one year mark on making landfall in the United States, the numbers show that people are now more than ever interested in getting away for a little vacation. The way people are traveling may have changed, but the demand for ski vacations this season is nonetheless just as high as in previous years.