For many people winter means skiing. Skiing is a great family sport. There aren’t too many activities for a whole family to enjoy together. We taught our kids to ski as soon as they could walk and spend many winter weekends skiing.
The only caveat is that skiing is very expensive. Everything about skiing is expensive from the lift ticket to the skis and everything in between. There are no two ways about it you are going to lay out some serious money in order to enjoy this sport. Especially if you have a large family.
Therefore I am always on the look out for ways to save on skiing. When my kids are little I take advantage of the 4th and 5th grade Ski for free pass offered by many states. I also hand down ski jackets, pants and ski equipment from my oldest daughter to her younger sisters.
The most consistent way to save money at the ski lodge is to bring your own lunch. You can purchase lunch at the lodge but the prices are astronomical. Bringing your own lunch saves a lot of money. A family of five buying a hamburger or chicken nuggets, french fries and a drink can be anywhere upwards of $50. Do this over a few days time and you will break the bank.
When I was little and my father would take my sisters and I skiing he actually fed us K-rations from his time as a Coast Guard Reservist. For anyone who has every had a K-ration you know it’s not the lunch for kids. Fortunately, I have come a long way from the K rations days but I have discovered a few tips for DIY lunch at the ski lodge.
1.) Bring food the kids like and lots of variety. Remember you will be competing with french fries and mozzarella sticks. I bring all their favorite cold cuts and snacks. I try to avoid making it similar to the brown bag lunch like they take to school everyday.
2.) Don’t make individual lunches. The easiest way to bring lunch is to throw it all in the bag. I bring bread, lunch meat, peanut butter, meatballs & whatever else we have for sandwiches and we make it all there. This saves you time at home in the morning when you are trying to get out to the slopes.
3.) Be creative.. My children are picky eaters. They don’t all love sandwiches and I sometimes have to think outside the box. One of their favorites is to bring pasta in a thermos. Once we even made macaroni and cheese and brought it in a big drink cooler. I haven’t tried this but I have even seen people bring a crock-pot and plug it in at the lodge.
4.) Bring plates, napkins, and plasticware. Although you can get napkins and plasticware at the lodge I find it is just easier to bring it with you.
5.) Sometimes you have to give in. You are definitely saving lots of money so it’s okay to give in and get a french fry or a hot chocolate every once in a while. My kids look at it as a special treat.