How to save money and still go skiing in Norway
They say everyone in Norway is born with skis on their feet. But will you need to sell your shoes to pay for ski boots? Here's how to try and save money on winter sports in Norway.
Buy a season pass
A ski pass can be a rather significant outlay- especially for a whole family. However, If you plan on skiing even one weekend each month, you can probably save money by taking the cash flow hit and paying for the year upfront.
For example, with Skimore in Oslo, a season pass costs 3,468 kroner a year, while a single-day lift pass costs 470 kroner. At this price, four weekends of skiing -or more than seven days- will work out cheaper overall. The more you manage to ski with the annual pass, the more you will be able to save.
Norway's most sought-after resorts, like Trysil and Hemsedal, will require you to have around 14 ski days for the season pass to be cheaper, though. That said, they have flexible options that will save you money if you buy a skipass that allows several days across the season rather than individual tickets. Geilo will require you to ski around 12 times to make it worthwhile.
However, if you live and work in some of these areas, you may be eligible for a much more significant discount.
Consider a smaller resort
Season passes at some of Norway's biggest resorts will cost adults between 6,500- 8,500 kroner.
This will be far too steep for many, even if the skiing at destinations like Hemsedal, Trysil, Hafjell and Kvitfjell might be some of the best found in Norway.
Opting for a season pass at a smaller resort may mean staying more local and having fewer runs at your disposal, but it also saves a lot of cash.
The money you save on a season pass at a smaller location can be put towards having a few ski days at the bigger resorts if you feel the need to stretch your legs and tackle more challenging slopes.
Smaller, less steep resorts also offer better value for money for beginners. There's no point paying out for the extra slopes if you don't know how to use them.
How to save on equipment
This is where you can make real savings. Getting a complete set of ski gear can run into tens of thousands of kroner depending on whether you are starting from scratch.
But there are several ways you can shrink or completely eliminate this cost.
First up, plenty of buying and selling groups on social media will allow you to pick up secondhand bargains. For example, in Norway, there is the popular listing site Finn.no (the link will take you to ski listings), in addition to Facebook Marketplace and the like. But just remember, if an offer seems too good to be true- it probably is.
After that, several organisations will lend out free ski gear to help people get into the sport. For an overview of such places in Oslo, click here.
Buying out of season, such as in the summer, can also help you save money on brand-new gear.
Try ski touring and other winter sports
This tip applies specifically to the more advanced skiers reading this, but ski touring (hiking up a mountain and skiing back down) could be an option. You won't need a ski pass to try this. However, you may need to borrow or pay to rent special equipment, such as grips and specific skis, to give it a go.
You will also need to look at the conditions due to the very real risk of avalanches. For this reason, avalanche detectors (to help locate you) are also recommended.
Then there are also the thousands upon thousands of free cross-country ski tracks dotted over Norway. These can give you your winter sports fix, so you won't need to head to the alpine slopes as often.
Book as a group
A lot of accommodation around Norway is self-catering- meaning you'll be able to cook and prepare your own food rather than eating out every day.
Inviting more people along is an excellent way to ensure a great time and split the cost of food and accommodation for the trip.