Yay, it’s almost winter again! As a ski or snowboard lover, you’re probably already getting itchy feet when thinking about it. But you’ve got kids now, so how in the world are you going to take your baby skiing?
It seems like a daunting task, doesn’t it? But no need to fear! Having a fun family ski holiday is not an impossible task! Read on to get the best travel tips, the ultimate ski gear for your baby, toddler or child and a packing list for each age group.
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PICKING THE RIGHT LODGING OPTION
Your family ski trip can make or break with your choice of accommodation. You do not want to bring a baby into a hotel famous for their after ski parties or for its luxury silent retreats.
However, a lot of winter sports accommodations
An added bonus to picking a family-focused property is the fact that other guests will have children too – who’s up for instant playmates for the little ones?!
What to consider when picking a place to stay?
Baby cots: If you are traveling with a baby or toddler, you can ask for a baby bed. A lot of parents, however, prefer to bring their own, especially if they travel more than once a year. Take a look at this baby travel bed and give your little one their own safe place.
Family rooms: depending on the size of your family, you may want to upgrade that double or triple room to a family room. Unless your kiddos are big enough to stay in their own hotel room, one room for all of you is definitely the best choice.
TIP: if you are traveling with a pre-schooler or small child, you can bring your own mattress (take a look at this one, for example, which has integrated security rails). Most hotels will allow you to let the kid sleep in your room for free or for a minimal fee.
Family-friendly facilities: keeping your child occupied and happy is the number one rule for having fun ski holidays with kids. Look for accommodation that offers a pool, game rooms and/or kid’s clubs. For babies and toddlers think about microwaves, food processing equipment, high chairs, changing stations, etc.
Daycare & babysitting service: a lot of hotels and chalets offer a nanny service throughout the day or at night. In-room babysitting services are available but
Nursery slopes and snow gardens: if your little ones are old enough to give skiing a go, look for family-friendly ski accommodation with adjacent nursery slopes. These gentle slopes are created for beginners and ease your child into the sport. Some domains also have snow gardens, which is basically a playground/ski class for the youngest skiers. Kids (usually between 3 and 5) can discover the new activity with games that will teach them how to use their skis and glide.
Location: ski in/ski out is a great idea when choosing your next family snow holiday. Your bigger kids can ski in and out of the resort (pick a domain with gentle slopes that ski right up your hotel’s doors). It is much easier for yourself as well, since you don’t have to lug your equipment around while holding a baby. And we’re pretty sure you don’t want to wait for the shuttle bus with an overtired toddler. Staying close to the slopes is key!
5 TIPS FOR A SMOOTH BABY SKIING HOLIDAY
TIP 1: Bring family or friends
Family ski holidays are the perfect moment to get some quality time together. However, if it’s only yourself, your partner and kiddos, you’ll have to split up to get some skiing done.
So bring out the wide meaning of family! Ask your parents, other relatives or friends, to tag along. If they have little ones themselves, you can take turns watching the children.
This way you get to enjoy both some family time and a bit of action on the slopes.
TIP 2: Research
Unless you’re a very chill person, going on holidays with kids can get stressy. Anticipate by researching and planning to perfection. Well, ok, you don’t have to overdo it and get more stressed out by going on your trip than by staying at home.
However, look into your ski domain in advance. Figure out what activities your family would like to do, how to get there and how you’ll schedule the skiing.
TIP 3: Book in advance or go all inclusive
Things can get rather busy, especially if you are traveling during school holidays, so save some precious time by booking in advance.
Arrange your equipment, book restaurant tables and figure out how to teach your kids to ski. Do anything you can think of beforehand. This way you can breath, relax and have fun once you arrive.
If you really want to take it easy, go all inclusive. Everything is taken care of from the food & drinks to snowboard lessons and lift passes. It’s also a great way to monitor your budget as you won’t see the expenses adding up.
TIP 4: use your baby’s inner alarm to your advantage
As much as you would like to get to sleep in while on holiday, that just isn’t going to happen. So, rise and shine along with the kids and get straight into action.
Early mornings mean early lunches and this way you can avoid the rush hours on the slopes and in the restaurants.
Depending on nap times you can add in some more snow fun in the late afternoon. Or you can reserve the mornings for skiing and snowboarding and the afternoons for other activities like swimming or hiking.
TIP 5: Sniff that mountain air
A lot of children spend many hours inside – at school and at home. Getting your kids outdoors and into that fresh mountain air, will do them nothing but good.
Your older children can explore and exercise in a whole new environment, but make sure to bring along your youngest as well. It is not too cold for them!
Put your little one into a cozy baby snowsuit and head out. It will be so much more fun than staying inside. But mind the sun and the wind! Always use a good sun protector, sunglasses and a hat.
EXTRA TIP: You can rent snow buggies: this makes getting around the resort a lot easier. And bring along a baby carrier suitable for winter weather, this way your baby can enjoy your body heat and you have your hands free!
BABY SNOW GEAR: WHAT DO YOU NEED?
As your baby is still too small to be a planker, you’ll mostly just need stuff to keep them warm. Scroll down to read more about the best baby ski wear. These tips work for any kind of family winter destination, not just for family ski trips. F.e. when you are visiting Iceland in winter.
The number one way to keep your little one warm, but make sure to keep the following criteria in mind:
- Waterproof or
waterresistant: unless you have a newborn that can’t sit on their own, you want a baby ski suit that is waterproof. This way you can put your baby down to play or crawl around in the snow, without worrying that they’ll get wet. That being said, if it’s only for short periods of time, a water resistantbunting will do the job as well.
- Hands and feet: the outer parts of our bodies tend to get colder more quickly, so especially with little ones, you want to keep those warm. With infants, it might be more convenient to pick up a snowsuit that has integrated feet and even gloves. This way your baby is all snuggled up for the snow fun. Some buntings come with fold-down cuffs, which is an easy way to protect hand and feet but only suitable for infants that don’t play in the snow yet.
- Convenience: look for an infant snowsuit that is easy to get on and off. You’ll be grateful for your choice when you’re changing that diaper for the umpteenth time.
- Size: we know it can be tempting to buy a size bigger so that they can grow into it, but it’ll get frustrating for your little one to try and play in a snowsuit that is too big.
Columbia Baby snuggly bunny bunting
This machine washable baby one piece snowsuit is made in a lightweight material and not bulky at all. As it is water and wind resistant, you can let your little one play happily in the snow (but maybe not for hours on end).
There is a microfleece lining in the hood and torso, but not in the legs. Another thing to keep in mind is that it lacks a bit of fabric to protect the neck from the zipper.
At the hands and feet, there are fold-over cuffs for extra warmth, but they tend to be too small when you have a
Arctix insulated snow bib overalls
These Arctix snow pants are made for fun in the snow! As they are lightweight and not bulky, your little one can crawl or run around as much as they’d like. You don’t need to worry about tears either, as the seems are reinforced and thus provide a durable quality.
It consists of a multi-layered construction with a wind & water resistant outer shell, breathable inner material and
Unfortunately, there are no buttons or a zipper on the legs, so you’ll have to undress your baby all the way to change a diaper.
The ski bibs have to be combined with an insulated jacket, for example, this one
Leveret Quilted baby snowsuit
This quilted infant bunting is perfect for newborns. We’re not really into the whole quilted look, but it’s available in brown, pink and white and covered with easy snaps, all the way down. This way it’s very easy to get your little one in and out for a diaper change.
As it has a complete fleece lining, it does its job perfectly in keeping your little one warm. The newborn snowsuit is machine washable (cold water only!) and has integrated feet and fold-down cuffs to keep the hands warm.
The only downside is that the snaps are a little too far apart which causes a bit of air to sneak in.
HAT & MITTENS
While it may be tempting to pick the cutest hats, scarfs,
The following infant ski gear is both adorable and comfortable.
This cute bear hat is available in white, grey and brown and is a great choice for some snow fun with your little one. It covers the neck area and is lined with a soft furry fabric.
This baby ski hat is available in 4 colors and sports earflaps that will keep your baby nice and warm, as will the fleece lining. The chinstraps make sure the hat stays were it is supposed to be.
Aren’t these mittens simply adorable? And yet they were designed for snow and skiing, making them perfect for your winter holiday! They are water and windproof and sport no thumb (for children up until 2 years). They have a long, wide opening for the sleeves and an easy pull system which ensures the mittens stay put. The lining isn’t the thickest, so some people have reported them as begin not warm enough.
These fluffy mittens will do their job at keeping your baby warm. The elastics on the wrists make sure that they are easy to put on and off, while the hook and loop strap makes sure they won’t fall off. They are available in a bunch of colors and come as a 2 pair pack!