This is How I Got a Ski Resort Job

Ever dreamed about working at a ski resort? If you want to live in the mountains, this is one of the best ways to do it. Not only will you be living in a beautiful place, but you’ll have the chance to ski or snowboard all winter long. Why visit a ski town on vacation when you can make your whole life a vacation? The dream of living the mountain life is actually very obtainable. If you’ve thought about applying to a ski resort, but didn’t know where to start, keep reading!

Finding Job Opportunities

For best results, I recommend applying to several resorts at a time. If you already have a few options in mind, you can go straight to the websites for these specific mountains to find job opportunities. When I went through my first application process for the ski industry, I wasn’t familiar with very many mountains. I applied to the ones I knew and searched for others. Perhaps search for resorts within a certain area that you may be interested in working. For me, I knew I wanted to work in either California or Colorado, so I researched resorts in those areas and applied to several.

It may make the process easier to apply to multiple resorts owned by the same company. If you’re looking to work for an independent resort, this won’t be an option, but many mountains operate under the same corporate entity. Check out the company’s main website for openings. You should be able to easily send in applications to a few resorts at a time.

Generally, the hiring season for ski resorts picks up in the fall. Most resorts are going to do the bulk of their hiring in October and early November, though they will probably start looking in September. It is in your best interest to plan ahead and apply early to get the position that you want. However, if you’ve missed this window, don’t worry too much – it’s likely that applications will still be taken through the new year. Job options will just be more limited.

What Job Should I Apply To?

If you want to work outside, the easiest position to get hired for is Lift Operations. No skiing or snowboarding experience necessary, in most cases – but you’ll get the opportunity to be on the mountain every day. This is one of the best positions if you’re looking to improve your skiing! Once you pass the basic ski test, you’ll be able to ride for work. If you’re already an experienced skier, you may want to try instructing. A little more coveted of a job, it will also pay better. Bilingualism is a plus for this position.

Service industry experience also comes in handy in the ski industry. Food and beverage gigs are a little more competitive, but it can also be some of the best paying work you’ll find. There are many general customer service positions, too. Hotel front desks, ticket sales, or retail are all great options. If you’ve got customer service experience and at least a little skiing experience, you might be able to land a job as a ski tech.

Unsure what you want to do for the mountain? Check out job postings and apply in bulk. This is probably your best bet to get hired. Cover all of your bases! If you do have something in mind, go for it, but don’t get too set on one specific job. Getting your foot in the door may be the most important part in some cases. Resorts do like to hire internally for some jobs, so keep this in mind. Many people work a season in one position and are able to move up or over to a better job as soon as the next winter rolls around.

Employee Housing vs. Finding Your Own Place

Unfortunately, the most difficult part of the process will be finding housing. Many resorts will offer employee housing for their workforce, but it is first-come, first-serve and will be limited. If you’re applying later in the season, this may not be an option for you. The earlier you apply, and the earlier you arrive, the better your luck will be with getting staff housing.

Keep in mind that to a certain extent, priority will be given to applicants that do not need employee housing. This is not to say that you will not be hired for a job because you ask for staff housing, but if you do not need housing, you will be at the top of the list.

If you do choose to live in employee housing, expect something similar to living in a dorm. You may be sharing a room, and you will definitely be sharing common areas with several roommates. Rent will likely be much cheaper than searching for your own place, and you will probably not be on a lease.

Your hiring team will have resources for you if you choose to search for your own housing. They should be able to direct you to local Facebook groups, classifieds, and apartment websites. Check out local Craigslist posts, as well. Housing is always in high demand, so act quickly on any listings you’re interested in. Don’t get too discouraged if places get snatched up, though. There will be more!

The Interview

During your interview, you can expect general questions regarding your past work experience and how it would relate to the job you are applying for. None of the questions should be too difficult, but prepare answers regarding past challenges as well as your strengths and weaknesses. If you’re applying for a service position, you will probably be asked how you would handle a difficult customer. You will likely also be asked how you function in a high-paced environment, as the holiday season can be extremely busy at ski resorts. Your interviewer will want to know that you will be able to handle the crowds without too much burnout. Specific stories that show how you do well under pressure will be beneficial.

Enthusiasm will go a long way in your interview – possibly more than anything else. If you’re excited about the opportunity to work for that mountain, let them know! The hiring team is looking to cultivate a work environment made up of individuals who are excited to be working on the mountain. The more you make it clear that this is you, the better. Doing a little research on the resort won’t hurt, either. Why DO you want to work there? Prepare an answer that shows your interviewer that this is more than just a seasonal job for you. If you really want to get into the ski industry, tell them.

Enjoy the Mountain Life!

So, you’ve lined up the job – now get prepared! Bring warm clothing (avoid cottons – they don’t dry out well in snowy weather), good winter boots, wool socks and plenty of beanies. No ski gear? No problem. You’ll be able to take advantage of plenty of employee discounts and local thrifted gear once you arrive. Most of all, get excited! The ski town life is a one-of-a-kind experience. Whether you plan to become a lifelong mountain local, or just want to check it out for a season or two, it’s something you won’t soon forget.

Heavenly

heavenly ski jobsHeavenly Job Fairs:

Come for the JOB – Stay for the EXPERIENCE!
2010/2011 Heavenly Resort Job Fairs at the California Lodge
• Saturday, October 23rd, 9:00am-4:00pm
• Tuesday, October 26th, 4:30-7:00pm

  • Free Ski Pass
  • Health Insurance
  • Great benefits

• Apply online at www.jobs.vailresorts.com prior to attending the fair.

Heavenly resort at California’s Lake Tahoe fits its given name. Heavenly’s landscape is second to none in beauty during any season. To fully appreciate the loveliness that surrounds Heavenly take a ride on the Heavenly Gondola. On your way up stop at the Gondola Mid-Station. At Mid-Station you will find an observation deck overlooking Lake Tahoe, Café Blue and Shop in the Sky. But this exquisite resort has much more to offer than its beautiful views. At the top of Heavenly Gondola is Adventure Peak. At Adventure Peak you can walk hiking trails, climb the climbing wall, crawl through the Spider Zone or grab a bite to eat; it is the perfect stop for kids and adults.

Heavenly has many lake activities to offer its guests. Spend the day boating, kayaking, or parasailing out on Lake Tahoe. You might enjoy taking a scenic helicopter tour or a hot air balloon ride over majestic Lake Tahoe. If your stay at Heavenly resort is during the ski season then you are sure to have a great time in the snow. After a busy day on the slopes take a relaxing break at Heavenly’s hot springs or hit the town for some fine dining, shopping or the casinos. Whether you visit Heavenly resort in the winter or summer you are sure to feel like you’ve tasted a little piece of heaven.

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Lake Louise Ski Area

canada ski jobsIn the heart of Alberta, Canada’s historic Banff National Park is located Lake Louise Ski Area. Lake Louise Ski Area has ski runs for every skier’s ski level and ability, including beginner to expert. Lake Louise is known for being one of the largest resorts in North America, so come ski on any of Lake Louise’s 4200 acres and experience the resort’s beautiful terrain.

Lake Louise offers a unique opportunity for corporate team-building activities at their Race Center. Take a day away from the office and bring your work group to the resort to help build the group’s camaraderie by a friendly ski race competition. Besides winter sports, such as skiing and snowboarding, the resort also offers summer recreational activities. You can take a ride the Lake Louise Gondola where you might just see wild Grizzly Bears! Or visit the Wildlife Interpretation Centre where you can learn all about Canadian wildlife.

Kids will love Lake Louise’s Daycare center and the ski lessons they offer! And if it is your first time at Lake Louise Resort ask for a free mountain tour and get introduced to the resorts’ slopes by an expert. Visit this gorgeous ski resort and it will soon become your favorite vacation spot!

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Mammoth Mountain

mammoth ski jobsIn Mammoth Lakes, California is a treasure – Mammoth Mountain Ski Area. At this California resort you will find various forms of entertainment; everything from shopping to skiing to golfing. Visit anytime of the year and find your favorite things to do available to you.

Mammoth Mountain is known for its famous Unbound Terrain Parks. There are seven parks and three pipelines that will rock any skier or snowboarder’s world. Comes check out these celebrated slopes for yourself, and while you are here take a Snowcat Tour or rent some snowmobiles. Winter in sunny California has never been better than at Mammoth Mountain.

Mammoth Mountain summers are filled with fishing, mountain biking, horseback riding and so much more! During your summer stay, take some time to visit Yosemite National Park. It is located less than an hour from Mammoth Mountain and offers breathtaking views of its splendid landscape.
After an active day on the mountain stop by The Village for some leisurely shopping and fine dining. The Village is the perfect ending to a perfect day. Mammoth Mountain Ski Area is your ideal resort in all seasons and this unique resort lets you have fun in the California sun no matter the time of year.

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Park City Mountain Resort

park city ski jobsFind the greatest snow on earth at Park City Mountain Resort in the heart of Utah’s Park City. Park City is conveniently located only 45 minutes from Salt Lake City’s international airport. Utah was the home of the 2002 Winter Olympics and Park City was the host for many Olympic games. Park City is also the home mountain to many professional snowboarders and skiers. Visit Park City Mountain Resort and feel the rush as you ski down the same slopes as Olympic and professional athletes. You’ll never tire of Park City’s beautiful scenery and fresh winter snow.

Park City is also the host of the famous Sundance Film Festival. Visiting this time of the year creates a unique experience to see creative Independent films or even spot a celebrity! Winter has never been more enjoyable than while enjoying a cup of hot coco as you walk the quaint streets of downtown Park City and visiting its great shops.

Bring the family and have some summer fun riding the Alpine coaster, hiking, playing miniature golf or daring to take a turn on the ZipRider. You won’t find a more family friendly vacation spot than Park City Mountain Resort. Your family is guaranteed have a blast because there is something exciting for every member of the family. Park City Mountain Resort will have you craving for more of Utah’s fresh mountain air and legendary snow!

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Steamboat Springs Ski Resort

steamboat ski jobsWhether you stay a weekend or a week at Steamboat Ski Resort in Steamboat Springs, Colorado you will never run out of things to do. No matter what time of year you visit Steamboat Resort or how many times you stay, there is always something new and different for you to experience. In the summer try your hand at fly fishing, golf, kayaking, hiking, boating or attend a rodeo, take a Hot Air Balloon Tour, go on an ATV mountain adventure.

s If you love the snow experience the slopes on skies or a snowboard, go horseback riding in the crisp air or hit the mountains on snowmobiles. After an active day on the mountain relax in Steamboats’ natural hot springs. These are just a few examples of what you will find at the Steamboat Resort for you to enjoy.

Bring your family, friends or children; there is something for all ages. Steamboat has childcare and kid programs during the day and evening so you can feel free to venture out on the town for a meal, some shopping or a day at the spa. No matter what your interests are Steamboat has something for you, so come experience the adventures Steamboat has waiting for you.

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Stowe Mountain Resort

Visit Vermont’s Stowe Mountain Resort and enjoy fresh mountain air all year long. Come ski or snowboard in the winter and show off your skills at Stowe’s Terrain Park and Half Pipe. If you are looking for an even bigger challenge then check out the Rail Garden and Jib Nation. These winter attractions are very popular with the youth, so feel free to bring the whole family on your vacation to the resort. If you are interested in doing some exploring then take advantage of some of Stowe’s unique offers – dog sled or mountain tours.
Looking for somewhere to host a big event? Let Stowe Mountain Resort host a ski race for you! Stowe is the perfect place for corporate events, reunions, etc. Everyone is guaranteed to have a good time. In need of some personal wellness? Then book a weekend at Stowe’s Wellness Center. Here you will learn about nutrition, personal well-being and relaxation. You are sure to walk away feeling rested and rejuvenated.

If you are visiting during the summer season then slide down our Alpine slide, float through the air on the Gondola Skyride, climb to the top of the Climbing Wall or take on the Inflatable Obstacle Course. You are sure to have fun no matter which attraction to choose at Stowe Mountain Resort.

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Whistler Blackcomb

whistler ski jobsWhistler Blackcomb ski resort is located in beautiful Blackcomb, Canada where you can lodge in Whistler’s luxurious hotels, condos, homes or even chalets. This year-round resort has something for the explorer in all of us. In the summer months you can take bear and wildlife tours and journey between coastlines and mountain ranges by train on the Whistler Sea to Sky Climb. For the athlete there is a mountain bike park, golf course, hiking trails and even summer glacier skiing and snowboarding on Whistler’s Blackcomb Mountain. For the adventurer take a trip on the zipline, rent a ATV or go sightseeing on high in a gondola.

The winter season has just as much to offer as the summer season at Whistler, it’s not just about the skiing and snowboarding. Take advantage of Whistler’s dog sledding activity, the helicopter tours and Ziptreck Ecotours. Take a break from your regular skiing and go on a cross country skiing or snowshoeing trip. End your adventure filled days in the summer or winter with a relaxing trip to a spa or a delicious dinner at one of the many restaurants available.

If you’ve brought the children you will find Whistler’s family friendly atmosphere refreshing and energizing. Whistler provides fun activities for you and your family such as sleigh rides, ski and snowboarding lessons for all ages, plus wait until you try out the Tube Park! The whole family can have fun together no matter what you decide to do. Whistler Blackcomb ski resort offers adventures you can’t find anywhere else, you won’t be able to resist coming back again and again.

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Aspen Snowmass

aspen snowmass resort

Aspen Snowmass Resort, located in Aspen, Colorado is not only a winter ski resort, but a year-round retreat that offers a variety of fun and invigorating activities. Whether you are into hiking, mountain biking, music, outdoor markets, art festivals or snow skiing and snowboarding, Aspen Snowmass Resort has it all. You’ll never run out of activities to do no matter which season you decide to stay at this resort.

The resort is also perfect for family vacations, so feel free to bring even your young children with you. The resort offers babysitting, a skate park, a variety of activities for kids, a ski and snowboard school for all ages and the resort’s new and innovative Treehouse Kids’ Adventure Center. Your children will have great opportunities to have safe and fun experiences while learning new skills and making new friends.

Not only can you find numerous opportunities for entertainment as the resort itself, but you can find restaurants, shopping and an exciting nightlife in Aspen. Aspen also has summer and winter live music concerts, art festivals and open markets. You’ll never run out of things to do or new experiences to try.

The Aspen Snowmass Resort is an ideal location for people of all walks of life. It’s a great get away for families with young and grown children, couples celebrating anniversaries, newlyweds and groups of friends; there is something for everyone at Snowmass.

The following departments will be hiring for the 2010-2011 winter season.

  • Lift Attendants
  • Snowmaking
  • Tickets
  • Snowcats
  • Food & Beverage
  • Four Mountain Sports and D&E Snowboard Shop/Retail and Rental
  • Guest Service Representatives
  • Ski and Snowboard Schools of Aspen/Snowmass (including day care positions with our School programs)

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Vail

vail ski resortVail Resorts owns and operates five premier year-round resorts: Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge and Keystone in Colorado and Heavenly in California and Nevada. Their mountain segment includes lift ticket, ski & snowboard school, dining and retail & rental businesses.

Visit Vail Ski Resort in Vail, Colorado all year and experience wide variety of seasonal activities such as horseback riding, hiking, mountain biking, road cycling, kayaking, rafting, skiing, snowboarding, rock climbing, golfing and so much more. Your possibilities are endless when you visit historic Vail Ski Resort.

Vail has something for everyone, including children. Vail is family friendly and is accommodating to every age. Check out Vail’s Adventure Ridge, Nature Center or skate park with your kids. Or, if you are at the resort for the winter ski season, you can give your children ski and/or snowboarding lessons at the resorts’ ski and snowboard school. If you want to hit the slopes without having to worry about the safety of your kids, then you can take them to the ski resort’s Child Care and Nursery.

Take advantage of Vail’s indoor activities such as great shopping, a variety of restaurants, and an active nightlife. Or relax and pamper yourself with a day at one of Vail’s many spas. Your vacation in Vail can be as active or low-key as you like, it’s up to you, but no matter what it will be eventful and memorable.

Search for Vail ski jobs now.