No Ski-Free promotion this year
Anticipating a good snow year? Crested Butte Mountain Resort is.
This Friday, August 1 is the last day to buy a season pass at the cheapest discount price, which has remained the same as last year, at $849 for an adult gold pass, or $414 for the EZ-Pass. However, the deadline for getting the best deal is over a month earlier this year.
“The phones are ringing off the hook at the ticket office, and we’ve been getting a lot of web traffic too,” says CBMR vice president and chief marketing officer Ken Stone.
CBMR is using three different pricing periods for their season passes this year.
Friday will be the end of the early discount period, with a second discount period running until September 26. A Gold Pass during the second period will cost $998, but that’s still cheaper than Telluride’s early season pricing at $1,200, Stone says. Last year, the early pricing period ended a month later on September 14.
The resort has decided not to bring back its Ski Free promotion this year after its brief re-emergence last season.
CBMR will change to a “Stay and Ski Free” promotion this time around, running from November 26-December 15. Stone says free skiing will be extended to visitors using local lodging. Each night’s lodging equates to one free lift ticket per person.
Stone says the aim is to attract a higher paying clientele and improve the image of Crested Butte.
“It ties back to adding value rather than a discount strategy. Having people stay in lodging really changes the perception of what Ski Free is. It places more value on our product,” he says.
Stone says the program was open to all lodging operations in the valley, but not all are partnering.
Crested Butte/Mt. Crested Butte Chamber of Commerce director Christi Matthews says most businesses in the valley seem to be excited about the reconfigured program. Matthews says, “I think it shows a willingness to still be flexible on some of the benefits they provide skiers, while providing an opportunity for some of our businesses to see economic benefits, too.”
She says feedback following last season’s Ski Free promotion was a mixed bag. Matthews says some business owners were concerned that Ski Free “wasn’t bringing the type of visitors we were looking for.”
This year’s Platinum and Gold Pass holders will be able to take advantage of three free days of riding at Durango Mountain Resort, Powderhorn, Taos Ski Valley, Okemo and Mt. Sunapee. Monarch ski area was not included this year.
CBMR’s variety of multi-use cards are back as always, including the CB Card and the EZ Pass.
The X-Card has been increased from five to six days, and is also on sale until Friday at $249.
The Family Pass Program also got some love this year. One young adult or child pass ($150 or $90 this year) will be added for free to the purchase of a Platinum or Gold Pass in the same family. The regular prices for youth passes were also lowered this year, Stone says.
CBMR is also tacking on an additional day of skiing for any person who upgrades their pass from last year to one of higher value.
Kids six and under are the only ones truly skiing for free this year. Seniors over 70 have skied for free at CBMR for the past few years, but now must pay $199 for a Gold Pass.
The first discount period for season passes started on June 18 and runs until this Friday, August 1. The second discount period will extend from August 2 through September 26, with regular pass prices concluding September 27 through April 5. The season pass office just opened and is located in the Outpost Building at the base area.