Accommodations at ski resorts run the gamut from budget hostels to five-star resorts. But if you're traveling with your family or a large group, it's cost-effective to rent a condominium or home with plenty of space to spread out. Ski-in/ski-out access is wonderfully convenient, but a centrally located condo or private home that's close to public transportation or ski shuttles works well, too. Here's how you can find a ski vacation rental that's perfect for you:
- Check the ski resort's online accommodations listings. Every large ski mountain, from Mammoth and Vail out west to Killington and Sugarbush in the east, has a comprehensive online website with links to "Where to Stay," "Vacation Planning" or "Accommodations." (Find your ski resort's website via your favorite search engine, such as Google.) Typically resorts advertise condo- or home-rental deals and specials online, too, so you'll want to seek them out anyway, perhaps to find a sweet package deal on housing, plus lift tickets and transportation. Many ski-resort websites allow you to book directly online.
- Search for a ski town's property management companies. Many homeowners employ property management companies to take care of and rent out their homes or condominiums when they aren't using them. Do an Internet search of "[name of ski mountain/town] property management" to see what might turn up.
- Visit the ski town's Chamber of Commerce online. Some resort condominiums may be members of the ski town's local Chamber of Commerce, so find it online and search the business listings under "lodging" or "accommodations."
- Visit ResortQuest.com. This "Vacation Home Network" offers rental properties at ski resorts in British Columbia, Utah, Colorado and Idaho. Options range from luxurious, multi-bedroom homes to studio condominiums. It's fun to browse this site and just consider all the vacation possibilities!
- Visit ResortsandLodging.com. This comprehensive site lists resorts and lodges all over the world. You'll have to weed your way through hotel listings, but you may find a gem of a home or condo rental.
- Ask friends and family for referrals. Oftentimes the best source for vacation ideas is people you know. After all, they are likely aware of your likes and dislikes in accommodations and can share their own experiences with specific vacation homes or condos.
- Always visit TripAdvisor.com. I never book any accommodations without reading reviews at this website where "real people" post their opinions, raves and rants. Naturally, I wouldn't make a decision solely on strangers' advice, but rather add it to my research to make a final decision on where to stay.