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FRESH

APPROACH

TO GETTING

THE RIGHT KITimg

Personal, Correct and Honest

If you're planning a ski holiday, getting the RIGHT kit will make your ski holiday - ending up with the WRONG kit will ruin it!

Booking your ski hire online isn’t like buying a book or a DVD, there’s a lot more to getting the right kit than just a cheap deal. There are many ski hire websites out there - most might save you some money but that’s about it - they offer you little else!

We do it differently – yes, we have some of the best deals around, but we also make sure you get the right kit as well.

Booking your ski hire with us means you don’t just choose a ski and cross your fingers. We give you a truly personal service providing all the info, help and expert advice you need, online or offline, to help you get your booking right.

More choice & better value

Individual & personal service

Pay when you want

3 Different levels of discount

Guides, Tips & Tricks
and loads more . . . .
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WHAT CHOICE IS THERE?

No matter how small it is, any good shop should still offer a decent range of equipment for you to choose from – the wider the range the better.

It’s just not possible for six or eight models of skis to provide something suitable for everyone and as for boots a wide range is essential to cover not just different size feet but different shaped feet too. Be very wary of any shop that only stocks a couple of different models of ski boot.

And if you’re very tall or short, or have very big or very small feet, it will also be important that the shop you choose has a decent size range of both skis and boots. Watch out for shops that cut out the extreme sizes because they’re not profitable enough!

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WHAT AGE IS THE GEAR?

We very much doubt that if a rental shop or website told you their skis were 5 years old, you’d hire from them! The shops who rent out skis well past their sell-by date obviously know that too – so they imply that what you’ll be getting is new or at least nearly new.

It’s not until you turn up and are handed a pair of skis that have long since lost what life they had that you realize you’ve been conned.

Look out for claims of “high quality skis”, “recent equipment”, “well-known brands”, “modern equipment” and so on – none of this tells you how old the equipment is or what condition it is in.

Ski age does make a massive difference to your performance and enjoyment. Fair enough if you’re prepared to compromise on older equipment in exchange for a bargain but not if you pay top dollar expecting new kit. If in doubt, ASK before you commit to rent.

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BE VERY CAREFUL OF 2 FOR 1 DEALS?

Don’t be surprised that “two for one” offers aren’t all they seem to be when you look more closely.

Watch out for deals where the full price is way expensive, even if you do get “2 for 1”, the final price can still be expensive. Check out the age and quality of the kit too, often you can get newer kit for less elsewhere.

Usually it’s the cheapest item that’s free so if you’re a family you pay full price for the 2 sets of adults’ equipment and get the children’s kit free.

The headline makes you think you’re getting half price, but usually you’d be much better off with an offer that doesn’t look as eye-catching but gives you a genuine discount off on all your equipment.

2 for 1 deals also don’t work nearly as well if you’re an odd-numbered group, and don’t work at all for a single renter.

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COMPARING PRICES?

Some shops charge high prices for skis that turn out to be several years old when you arrive. You can’t compare that price with another shop who guarantees new, current season skis. On the other hand if you’re prepared to compromise on older skis, there may be another shop offering a budget option at a much lower price.

Which ever way you look at it, a high price for an old ski is never a good deal! So make sure you know what each shop is offering to compare like with like.

Likewise, whether a discount is a bargain or not depends on the full price in the first place. One high profile shop offering a seemingly-attractive “two for one” deal bases their figures on a public price that is in some cases over 50 Euros more than other shops in the same resort! So their two for one deal is nowhere near the amazing bargain it seems!

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REFUNDS - will you get your money back?

Refunds are a common problem, especially if you have booked your equipment in advance on the internet or through your tour operator.

Some sites will only refund if you’re ill or injured, only with a medical report and not, for example, for a parent who has to stop skiing because a child is ill. They also usually charge an admin fee which can wipe out the refund.

You might get a refund for early return due to bad weather but if so it’s often only with proof that all or most of the lifts were closed.

Most sites or tour operators won’t refund you either for boot hire if you buy your own boots, or if you return the equipment early for any other reason.

Even renting in resort does not always guarantee that you’ll only be charged for the time you have the kit, so watch out for a no-refund policy in the small print.

So if you’re booking in advance, make sure the site, agency or shop you book through will refund you if you return the kit early, no matter what the reason.

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INSURANCE SCAMS
– read the small print – carefully!

Whether it’s through your holiday insurance or directly with the rental shop, we strongly recommend you make sure your skis are properly insured against loss, theft or damage. But like all insurance, make sure you read the small print:

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CUSTOMER SERVICE –
do they care or just want your money?

Unfortunately it’s all to clear that some websites and shops are far more interested in getting your money than they are in providing good customer service. Yes, it can be very difficult for a rental shop when everyone arrives at once but professional staff in a decent shop should be able to smile though it all and still give everyone a good level of advice and service.

It’s important that they take time to get your boots right, and as far as ski choice is concerned they really should at least ask you a bit about your level, the kind of skiing you plan to do and the skis you have enjoyed – or hated – in the past.

And of course they must take the time and effort to set your bindings correctly and safely. If they just take a quick look at you and start screwing the binding, our advice is to walk out!

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HIDDEN COSTS

Coming Soon –

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EQUIPMENT CHANGES

Whether it’s because your boots don’t fit, you want to try snowboarding, your instructor says you need better skis, you plan a day off-piste or you just want to try something different, there’s a pretty good chance you’ll want to change some of your kit during your holiday.

Watch out though! Some shops carry so little stock that they just don’t have anything available for you to change to midweek. Remember to consider this when you choose which shop to rent from. And if they do say no when you ask to change, be prepared to insist, especially if you have a boot problem. No shop should leave you to suffer in badly fitting boots so if they can’t help, return everything, get your money back if you can and rent somewhere else.

And some shops, too, will charge you a fee to change your equipment even within the same price point / ability level which can make what seemed like a bargain to start with work out pretty expensive.

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EXTRA SERVICES?

Traditionally, you make your own way to the ski shop – they kit you out with skis, poles and boots – you make your own may back again – and at the end of the week you bring everything back.

However many shops offer “little extras” of various sorts which can make your whole ski hire experience a lot easier, these include things like:

Of course some shops may only offer one or two of these services and very few will offer them all. So decide which ones (if any) are most useful for you and choose a shop to suit.