Friday, October 16, 2009

Resort yet to set lift ticket prices

Full-day lift ticket prices have historically increased year-to-year


By TREVON MILLIARD
Express Staff Writer

A skier takes flight on a powder day on Bald Mountain, Sun Valley’s primary ski mountain. Photo by Mountain Express

In previous years, Sun Valley Resort announced one-day lift ticket prices in September, but the company is still deliberating on prices for the 2009-10 winter season.

Peak-season day passes last winter cost $80. In recent history, the price has increased year to year with each bump usually being larger than the previous year's.

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A full-day adult lift ticket cost $66 in 2004, $67 in 2005, $69 in 2006, $74 in 2007 and $79 in 2008.

Sun Valley Co. spokesman Jack Sibbach said he doesn't have a date nailed down for price announcements.

"It has to be soon before ski season starts," he said. "But a lot (of resorts' full-day lift ticket prices) aren't up yet."

That's true for Aspen Skiing Co., which controls four lift-served mountains around Aspen, Colo. Neither Vail-Beaver Creek nor Keystone-Breckenridge, also in Colorado, have announced their prices.

Sun Valley's ticket price was cheaper than those resorts last year, with Aspen charging $96, Vail-Beaver Creek $97 and Keystone-Breckenridge $92.

Sun Valley's adult season pass for 2009-10 costs $1,699 if bought before Oct. 31, a price competitive with Aspen, which is charging $1,689 if bought before Nov. 13. A Sun Valley season pass will cost $1,999 after Oct. 31. That's a $51 decrease from last year, but still far more than passes at some other resorts.

Sun Valley's season pass is almost three times the price of unlimited skiing at Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Keystone, Heavenly (Calif.) and Arapahoe Basin (Colo.). This so-called Epic Season Pass costs $599 and allows unrestricted access—no blackout dates—to all six of those resorts if bought before Nov. 22.

Ski areas that offer lesser-priced passes are generally closer to population centers from which they can draw higher volumes of sales.

Sun Valley's other passes

Sun Valley offers an array of other specials, including a 20-day pass discounted by $100 to a price of $900 if bought before Oct. 31 and the $199 early/late pass that can be used from opening day through Dec. 14 and March 29 to close.

The College Six-Pack is new to this year's lineup for full-time college students. It costs $224 no matter the time of the year and can be used for any six days of the season with a six-day extension allowed.

Dollar Mountain season passes are $300 and children's passes are $150.

For more pass and ticket information, go to Sun Valley's Web site at skipass.sunvalley.com.

Trevon Milliard: tmilliard@mtexpress.com




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