Packing for a ski vacation is an important task. You need to make sure you have enough warm clothes to keep you and your family warm on the ski mountain while also packing cozy clothes for the family to wear off the slopes. In the end, when it comes to packing for a ski vacation, more is better—more layers, more options, and more warmth.
Here’s how to pack for a ski vacation.
Down coats are warm, waterproof, and easy to move in, making them an ideal coat for a ski vacation. Pack down coats for your entire family to wear on the slopes to ensure everyone is nice and warm as they practice downhill skiing (whether they’re on a bunny hill or a black-diamond run). When packing down coats, just remember to pack hip-length varieties so the coat length doesn’t restrict your leg movement—a knee-length down coat would only make it harder for you to move your legs.
Winter hats, gloves, and scarves are all important items to bring on any ski vacation—and you should bring a few options of each. Why? Your gloves, hats, and scarves can get wet from falling snow, and you won’t want to put on damp winter gear as you head out for a post-skiing dinner. Better yet, bring different colors of your go-to cold-weather accessories so you can match your outfit to your winter gear. And remember, as you’re packing winter gloves, make sure you bring a waterproof pair. Your hands will get cold quickly if you only bring non-waterproof wool gloves.
Make sure each member of your family has a pair of warm and waterproof winter boots to wear throughout the ski trip. Winter boots are a crucial item for any ski trip. Your trusty sneakers will likely get wet as snow falls into their low slides and thin fabric layer. Boots will keep your feet protected whether you’re going for a quick walk or trekking through a foot of snow.
Have you heard of the phrase “après-ski”? It’s a French phrase that translates directly to “after ski” and references the act of eating or drinking after a long day on the mountain. You’ll want to bring some casual winter clothes for any après-ski adventures: a cozy cashmere turtleneck for a happy hour drink, flannel shirts for lounging at the lodge with hot cocoa, fleece-lined leggings for dinner by a fireplace. When packing, keep in mind that while you'll be on the slopes for a lot of your ski vacation, you’ll also need clothes to keep you warm as you explore the restaurants, bars, and other attractions throughout the ski town.
While on your ski vacation, you'll likely want to layer leggings under your ski pants, t-shirts underneath sweaters for women and sweaters underneath your fleece pullovers. Make sure you bring plenty of layers for every member of your family so everyone has something to keep them warm while skiing.
When it comes to ski vacations, you can’t have enough layers, so throw in a few extras, too. You'll be happy you did.
Ski towns are known to get cold at night, so you’ll want to pack your family’s favorite family pajamas (ideally flannel PJs) to keep you warm. Bring a few pairs of pajamas per person to make sure everyone has enough warm pajamas to wear throughout the vacation.
While you’re at it, pack some thick socks and slippers, too. Best of all? Those thick socks can also be worn underneath your women’s snow boots when you venture into town.
Just because you’re going to be spending time skiing and in the snow doesn’t mean you can skip the sunblock. Sun and ice reflect UV rays off of the snow and can result in some surprisingly bad sunburns. Remember to pack sunblock for your ski vacation—and don’t forget to put it on before you hit the slopes.
When packing for a ski vacation, the main thing you want to keep in mind is packing warm clothes that will keep you warm on the mountain, in the ski lodge, at the restaurants and other attractions in town, and in your hotel or home rental. Pack plenty of fleece and flannel for the slopes and cashmere to wear after your post-ski shower. Be sure to pack items you can layer on especially cold days and items that give you some outfit variety.