On December 6th last year, I left for my ski season. This day included a crash on the motorway, an incident involving an Argos that I’m a bit fuzzy on and so many swear words I’m guaranteed a trip to hell based solely on that. There was also a moment with my brother that, every time I even let it enter my mind, my chest gets simultaneously heavy and weightless and I smile. I had been saying goodbyes for a solid two weeks and when the day came, there was a moment when I was sure I couldn’t do it. If you feel like that just as you’re about to board your plane or bus, just swallow it. Trust Me.
I probably googled ‘what to pack for a ski season’ 14,000 times between September and December. So this should be about the time of year, all you lucky seasonaire-to-be’s are doing exactly the same. I had never skied a day in my life, I had never even put ski boots on before, so I was ultra-clueless.
Equipment and Gear– Obvious. If, like me, you’ve never skied before and don’t own skis or a board or even boots, don’t worry about it. But If you’ve got it, take it. The stuff you get as a ‘perk’ is decent, but if you’re unlucky enough to have irritating boots or odd shaped feet, you’ll find it’s a nightmare. Also, ski/board bag and boot bags give you so much more space. Good quality Ski Jacket, thermals, salopettes, goggles, gloves (mittens recommended for boarders) and HELMET. Nobody cares how uncool you look, helmets are about to become your best friend (that and the local barmen)
Clothes– I know the advice given to you is “pack like you’re going on a two week holiday”, but don’t. Be a massive tart, you’ll thank yourself for it later. I didn’t and made my family spend a fortune shipping stuff out to me. You will be going on a lot of nights out as well as skiing so that unachievable place between slob and nice-casual is what you want to be aiming for. Remember your faithful hoody, boots that can take a beating (I recommend black Doctor Martens, they go with everything) and maybe a nice outfit for New Year’s or Christmas Eve or even just a couple of nice accessories. Remember, Jeans take ages to dry and knitted doesn’t equal warm.
Also, the thing about underwear…. It has a tendency to wander off. Stock Up! Tights, Underwear and SOCKS. All manner of socks.
Electricals- I didn’t take my laptop because I thought it would be a bit excessive. I regretted it. iPad/Laptop/iPod/Phone and all the relevant chargers are the obvious personal items that are crucial for entertainment and communication. Take an iPod dock, your roommates will love you. Take as many adapters as you can get your hands on, but I recommend a couple of extension leads too. Hairdryer, 2+ pairs of ear/headphones, hardrive with extra movies/music on if you’ve got it.
Toiletries- Fun fact- Ski resorts are expensive! Just take a big’un of everything. If you don’t use it, your roommates surely will, girls especially. Don’t just go out there with half a tube of toothpaste you’re currently using. I recommend the hefty Treseme shampoo and conditioner bottles, they were a life saver. And take at least one spare tooth brush, trust me. Sun cream, moisturiser (boys too!), and lip balm.
Girls only, stock up on whatever it is you need. This includes but is not limited to; pill, tampons, razors, make-up. Also, don’t just leave contraception to the guy….nobody likes that girl, okay?
The Rest Of It- A pack of cards, travel wash, hot water bottle, rucksack, re-useable water bottle, folder for your paperwork, extra passport/id photos, ID, hip flask, home comforts (i.e. coffee, cadburys chocolate, marmite, hard to come by in the alps), needle and thread, lay a multi-hanger or a collapsible divider/storage on the bottom of your suitcase, Berocca, Andrews Salts, ibuprofen and paracetamol up the wazoo, make your own medical kit, spare crappy phone, (you can buy a local sim and use it to contact your resort friends or like in my case, use it in case you murder your normal phone,) sunglasses, hairbands galore, corkscrew, cute things to decorate your staff accomm. with, a couple of stamps to send letters/cards home with, and I recommend a Post Office Euro Card.
If it’s not on this list, you’ll live without it, but comment or get in contact for more advice. Part two of this will be Seasonaires advice.
originally posted 14/11/2014