There are a number of things you can do to snowboard for less. If you’re on a tight budget for the winter and still want to get in as much snowboarding as you can then check out the tips below for how you can save.
Snowboarding isn’t the cheapest of activities – but well worth the cost! But that doesn’t mean that you can’t use a few cost saving tips to make it more affordable.
Try the following 7 tips and tricks, if you aren’t already doing them, to save some significant dollars for your next snowboarding season.
Tip #1: Coffee Flask (a.k.a. Thermos)
If you haven’t invested in one of these yet and want to save cash this is a great place to start.
If you drink coffee or tea and always get one or more when you’re on the mountain then you know how expensive these can be.
I’m a tea drinker and when I used to go up the mountain and look for a caffeine hit it was like $3 for a tea (and I don’t drink it with milk so I was essentially paying $3 for a tea bag and some hot water!). Then I went riding with a mate and when I went in to get a tea he went to his car and came out with his flask – brilliant!
Get a good one like Hydro Flask and it will keep your coffee/tea hot for hours – so you can enjoy your coffee hot even half way through the day – or the end of the day, depending how long you go up.
The best thing is that these are really handy on road trips and for keeping things cool in the summer too.
Tip #2: Pack your Lunch
Same concept as tip#1 above – you can end up spending a small fortune on food on the mountain. Bring your own and you don’t spend any more than you would of if you were sitting at home.
Again, store it in your car or locker until it’s time to eat.
Tip #3: Lift Passes
If you’re a 50 day year kind of rider – or even a 10 day a year rider then get a season pass.
In fact, depending on your mountain of choice, sometimes a season pass pays for itself in just 4 days!
So suck it up and make the big purchase at the start of the season to save yourself heaps. The more often you think you’ll go up the better an idea it is to get a season pass.
If you think you won’t go up enough times to make a season pass worth it then look into multiple day passes. Most mountains will have some form of multi day passes that save money over just buying single day passes.
Tip #4: Wax your own Board
When you think about getting your board waxed as costing $10-$15 it doesn’t sound like much – and it isn’t if you only have to get it done once in a blue moon.
But if you’re riding regularly you’ll need a lot more waxing than just once.
How often you need to wax will depend on whether you have a sintered or extruded base on your board too.
So if you have a sintered base and you’re spending 15-20+ days on the mountain then learning how to wax your own board is definitely worthwhile.
Irons tend to go for anywhere from $30 to $100. So get a $30 one if you’re on a budget!
You can get 25 ounces of wax for around $25. You should only be using around 0.5 to 1 oz of wax per waxing so you should get between 25 and 50 waxes out of a block. So that’s $0.50 to $1 per wax.
So, 25 waxes will cost you around $45-$55 – around $2 per wax, compared with $15 per wax.
Over time that adds up to a lot of savings.
>>How to Wax a Snowboard: Step by Step Guide
Tip #5: Buy Second Hand
If you can find good quality second hand gear you can usually pick it up pretty cheaply.
It’s more of a risk as you can’t be certain of the condition and there aren’t any warranties. But with that risk comes cheaper prices.
Personally I’m not that keen on buying boots second hand! But other stuff I would consider. Although often you can get brand new gear from last season for almost as good a price as second hand stuff.
Try GearTrade.com if you’re looking for used snowboard gear or want to sell your old gear.
Tip #6: Buy Last Seasons Gear
If you buy the previous season’s gear you could save a whole lot. Sometimes last season’s gear can go for up to 70% off.
You will have more trouble finding exactly what you want – as there may not be any old stock left – but if you can find it then it will be a lot cheaper than the latest gear. And there shouldn’t be too much difference year to year.
The best time to buy last season’s gear is at the end of the season. So for 2014/2015 gear the best time to buy is between May, June, July and August 2015. From September the new season’s gear starts coming out – and there won’t be as much 2015 gear left (but what is left will still be cheap).
Try one of the following outlet stores to see if you can find previous seasons gear for a cheap price.
>>the-house.com’s outlet store
Tip #7: Buy on Sale
If you can’t wait until the best time of year to buy or you just have to have the latest gear then try to wait until there are sales on. If you can wait until boxing day there are normally some pretty good sales then.
But both online and physical stores tend to have sales at other times too and these are worth waiting for to save a decent amount of cash.
Thanks for Reading
I hope this post has given you some new ways to save some money when snowboarding this winter.
These are some of the things I do to save money. Do you have any other money saving tips? Something I haven’t mentioned? Any comments or questions are very welcome in the comments section below.
By (WT-shared) Johnycanal at wts wikivoyage [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons
John L. says
I can’t speak for Thermos, but I have a bottle from a company called Hydroflask that is simply incredible. It keeps liquids cold for at least 8 hours, and when I tried it with hot tea, the liquid was almost too hot to drink after about 6 hours, even when sitting in a cold car.
Another way I save money is through the camelbak bladder in my backpack. I put my own hydration in that vs. buying drinks at the resort.
I hadn’t heard of the Hydroflask but sounds awesome. I’ve got one that keeps stuff hot for about 2-3 hours but 6 hours is awesome!
The bladder is an awesome idea too. I usually keep drinks in the car but then you can’t drink while on the slopes and not so convenient if you haven’t got a park near the lifts.
Thanks for your input!
Hey Nate, great post. I’ve never been much of a snowboarder, but I have been skiing my entire life. I have employed most of the strategies you have listed in order to save a buck or two.
Also, isn’t there ways to usually save on lift passes? I usually can find coupons in local papers and grocery stores, but maybe not all areas have that option.
Thanks for stopping by and for the ideas.
Yeah definitely finding coupons is a great way if you can find them. I know there’s a thing called Groupon (like an online coupon thing) in Vancouver that probably has deals on lift passes. There’s probably online coupon places you can get in most places these days I’d imagine.
As well as the things mentioned in the post above, like getting multi-day passes in advance, if you get your season pass early there are usually big discounts.
I just got my season pass and it was like 70% cheaper by getting it before the end of September. I’d say most ski resorts have some kind of early bird season pass deal.