Northstar, CA Passholder Unhappy With Parking Charges Wins Court Hearing Against Vail Resorts

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Skiers paying to park closer to the lifts upset some pass holders.

A Northstar Ski Resort, CA passholder who was unhappy with the resort’s decision to charge for parking has won a small-claims court hearing to have the cost of his pass refunded, reports This Is Reno.

Vail Resorts owned Northstar California Resort announced back in October that starting this upcoming season it planned to charge guests to park at the Village View Lot. According to the resort, the change was to help reduce congestion on Northstar Drive and encourage guests to carpool, rideshare and make use of local shuttle options and public transportation.

The main issue for those upset was that the decision was announced only after most had already purchased their season passes and the company has a ‘no refund’ policy on all pass purchases. It was estimated that it could cost frequent skiers an extra $2,000 in parking alone.

“I had purchased a season ski pass back in April of 2019, with the understanding that parking would be free, as it has always been throughout Northstar’s entire history,” said Robert Scott.  “Northstar took my money, and then later released a notice that parking in the lot closest to the lifts would be paid only.

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New Northstar parking arrangements. Credit: Resort

Upon receiving his pass, Scott said it was labeled with the notice, “no refunds if used.” So he didn’t use it. And Vail Resorts still refused to refund his pass as Northstar has other terms in the fine print. So he took the resort to small claims court.

The Superior Court of California, Placer County, ordered Vail Resorts to repay Scott’s ski pass costs and court fees. In response to another similar court case brought by two other begrudged pass holders, Vail attorney’s said:

“This is a dispute over the terms of a $429 ski pass, which Plaintiffs mistakenly believe includes guaranteed free parking in a particular parking lot at a particular resort,” they wrote. “Plaintiffs should have filed this case in a local small claims court, not a federal district court.”

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