What Equipment Should You Buy

Writen by Jason Gibson.

Skiing can be an expensive sport – what should we spend our money on?

We all know skiing can be an expensive sport, forget about the flights, transfers and accommodation as those are things you’d spend on any holiday. It’s the little things like goggles, gloves, helmets, jackets and ski pants that add up and can make skiing more expensive than is necessary.

Here at Sweet Snowsports we have all been on enough ski trips and seen enough people on holiday to have a pretty good idea of how best to spend your money. If it’s your first ski holiday then we recommend that you beg and borrow as much as you can. Who knows, you may be one of those crazy people we hear about who don’t enjoy it and there’s no point buying everything if you’re never going to use it again.

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The First Purchase

Most people buy outerwear as their first purchase and then spend the whole holiday with cold hands and a headache from squinting! We recommend that you try as hard as you can to borrow ski jackets and pants and spend the money you save on a good pair of goggles and gloves. A goggle with double lenses is a must and a nice orange lens will do the job in all weather. If you have a helmet (or plan on getting one) it’s a good idea to take it with you when buying goggles to make sure it all fits together and you avoid the dreaded goggle gap. With gloves, invest in some Gore-Tex ones as they really will make the difference and if you suffer from the cold, mittens will always be warmer than gloves.

The First BIG Purchase

Never, ever, ever buy skis before you buy boots. Skis require far more upkeep than a lot of people realise, are only ever as good as their last service and are constantly changing in terms of the technology they use. We believe that it’s far better to rent and to take advantage of the latest skis every year. Unless you are skiing at least 2 or 3 times a year buying skis is not going to save you any money either. Almost all airlines now charge for ski carriage and with the hassle of moving them around it’s just not worth it.

Boots on the other hand (or foot!) could well be the best thing you ever spend money on. We’ve all had that pair of rental boots that make you hate skiing and unless you have a very generic foot you’ll always find it pretty difficult to find a well-fitting boot. A good fitting ski boot can make all the difference not just to your comfort levels but to your performance as well.

The techniques involved in boot fitting now mean that purchasing a pair of ski boots will often take over 2 hours and the end product will be custom moulded to your individual foot. A good boot fitter is a must and they will ask you detailed questions relating to how much skiing you have done and offer you the opportunity to try several models before deciding upon which one suits you best. Please do not buy ski boots from eBay as however much money you save, you’ll spend it in the bar drinking away the pain of sore feet!

Additional Purchases

Now you’re ready to buy the rest of your gear little by little. You don’t need to spend a fortune on outerwear but good quality ‘breathable’ gear is a must. Good thermals can be a lifesaver and like your grandma used to say, it’s always a good idea to wear layers. Although that big puffa jacket seems like a great idea for those cold days it’s easy to get too hot when the temperatures creep up. A good layering system means you can remove layers and regulate your temperature as conditions dictate.

We hope that this advice helps you avoid those easy mistakes and helps you make the most of your money. If you want to clarify anything or would like further advice please drop us an email at info@sweetsnowsports.com and we’ll happily get one of our experienced instructors to give you a call.

From all at Sweet Snowsports we hope that you have a great holiday and to see you on the slopes of Courchevel, Meribel and La Tania.

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