Vail Raises Single Day Ticket to $160

ameliatraynor | | Industry NewsIndustry News
Vail, Colorado | Photo: International Alpine Design
Vail, Colorado | Photo: International Alpine Design

Single day, walk-up lift tickets have seen another increase in pricing this week at numerous Colorado ski destinations owned by Vail Resorts. 

Selling at $145 the Wednesday before Christmas, single day tickets to Vail and Beaver Creek are now $159 during the holiday season. These tickets also provide access to Breckenridge, Keystone, and Arapahoe Basin, all of which are owned by Vail Resorts.

Resorts outside of CO are raising prices for the holiday season too, such as Deer Valley, UT and Whistler Blackcomb in British Columbia.

  Regular Rate Holiday Rate
Vail Resorts $145 $159
Aspen Snowmass $124 $129
Deer Valley, UT $114 $120
Whistler Blackcomb, BC $109 $119

Officials at Aspen Skiing Co. claim that single day, walk-up lift tickets account for only 10% of all sales, and customers should be looking into multi-day packages in order to get discounts. Aspen Skiing Co., a top competitor of Vail Resorts, has raised its price to $129 for a daily pass that’s good at Aspen Mountain, Snowmass, Aspen Highlands, and Buttermilk.

Jeff Hanle, spokesman of SkiCo, says the high daily prices are an incentive for guests to buy in advance and purchase multi-day packages. “You don’t buy an airline ticket the day you fly,” added Hanle. For example, if purchased seven days in advance, SkiCo charges $218 for a two-day ticket and $396 for a four-day ticket. The four-day ticket knocks the per-day price down to $99.

According to analysis by Aspen Daily News, pricing on single-day walkup tickets have gone up 65% since 2005:

It has gone up incrementally since: in the 2007-08 season, the single-day, walk-up ticket price was $87; in the 2008-09 season it was $96 and in March of 2011, SkiCo broke the $100 mark when it charged $104. It went up to $108 in December of 2011, according to Daily News archive articles. Vail was more expensive than Aspen in every instance except in 2005 when the single-day, walk-up price was $77. –  Aspen Daily News

With these steady price hikes, it’s becoming more indicative that the middle class may be priced out of skiing.

Want to visit these top resorts without emptying your wallet? Sites like and offer an online marketplace for unparalleled values on lift tickets. Liftopia has over 250 resort partners, offering up to 90% off. Make sure you do your research online before shelling out for single-day walk-up tickets.  Vail Resorts tickets aren’t available on, but Vail does offer a discount on tickets if you buy on its website in advance.

Some other ways to save money? Ski off-peak dates — midweek, not during a holiday. Most resorts will drop prices after the holiday rush. You can also check out smaller ski resorts in the area, which will offer more competitive pricing, or looking into season passes, which can pay for themselves in as few as 4 or 5 visits.



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16 thoughts on “Vail Raises Single Day Ticket to $160

  1. Alta ski resort charges $84 dollars , best skiing you can get in Utah and no snowboarders !!!
    If people would just learn how to carry their own gear and not pay for valet parking and all of the other crap that is totally unnecessary , lift ticket prices would be a lot lower , and not sue the ski resort for their own stupidity and lack of skill . Mountain safety ? Skiing is inherently dangerous !
    Take a lesson , be a better skier , learn the code

  2. You don’t buy 3 plane tickets to fly somewhere? How is that a logical comparison? Is there a discount for buying your one day ticket 2 weeks early?

    Snow sports… Always been a trustafarian activity

  3. or you have the option for skiing for free if you’re willing to hike a little and deal with the dangers of avalanches in the backcountry. there’s your $0 lift ticket!

    heck, you can spend $98 skiing a day back east at Stratton!!!! makes skiing Vail look like a good deal IMO.

  4. i was one of those people to pay $159 at Vail last week for a day of skiing, and I can safely say that it was worth every penny I spent. it was the best ski day i’ve had in 11 years, and i loved it. Vail is a world-class resort, and my one day was so much fun that i won’t need to ski another day this year; i’m that satisfied.and if you want something less expensive, you can always go to A-Basin, Monarch or Eldora. a holiday day ticket at A-Basin is 44% less expensive than the same at Vail.there you go.

  5. you know what , that 160 is a much much better value than the 120 squaw wants to wait in mile long lines to ski on 3 rock strewn runs, seriously

  6. Save your lift ticket money and ski the backcountry. No lines, no waiting, no loud music or crowds. Enjoy the solitude of the mountains and get a good workout on the way up. It makes for a more rewarding experience. Happy New Year!!!!!

    1. No, go to the ski area. The backcountry is dangerous with avalanches, ungroomed snow, hungry bears and wolves and sasquatches, and no ski-through coffee. Besides, mogul skiing is where it’s at! And once the resorts completely get rid of everyone that is not a 1%er, there will be plenty of room to spread out.

  7. sub alpine ski resorts are for pussies. have fun bump skiing all those lame ass timberline runs cause that’s what those big resorts have more of than anything else.

  8. “You don’t buy an airline ticket the day you fly,”

    -Well yeah, but it really isn’t a weather dependent sport.
    I’m afraid corporate mentality is losing track of what it is exactly that they are selling .

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