When you think of a ski trip, you imagine a lot of luggage, right? All that padded clothing, for one thing. Then there are the layers - it's cold in the Alps! And that's before you even begin to think about normal clothes. But here's a different way to think about packing for a ski holiday, and proof that you really can squeeze everything you need into one small cabin bag. Which means you can be ahead of the crowd on those long ski resort transfers, and maybe even pack in a run on your arrival day.
We asked family travel blogger, Helen Wills, from Space In Your Case, to show us how she packs light for a ski trip. Check out this short video to see her tips:
Here's what Helen has to say about her packing list:
What to pack for a ski trip
The first mistake people make when packing for a ski trip, is to assume they need double the clothing. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, I need far less clothing when I ski than I do on any other holiday. The trick is in doubling up, re-wearing, and packing lots of thin layers. Here's what I take:
- Ski jacket and salopettes - don't skimp on these, even though they're bulky. Good quality ski gear is what keeps you warm and dry, meaning you need less underneath.
- Wicking base layers; these are thermal leggings and tops which carry moisture away from the body and do most of the job of retaining warmth. They're also really thin, and roll up to practically nothing in your luggage. I only takes three sets for six days skiing (plus a decent antiperspirant!), but a couple of extra tops wouldn't be difficult to fit in; I double up on ski socks too - those take up a lot of space, but you can easily get away with wearing each pair twice.
- A ski helmet: it makes sense to get skis and boots in resort, but when it comes to a helmet, I like to have my own. Surprisingly, even that goes into my cabin bag - I put my goggles inside for protection, and pad it with socks, ski gloves and base layers to maximise the space.
- A light fleece to pop under my jacket on the colder days.
That's really all you need for the skiing. Then I add a lightweight t-shirt for each evening (silk or lycra roll up to nothing), which I wear over my base layers the next day. One or two favourite sweaters, a spare pair of jeans, and a couple of chunky necklaces mean I'm all set for the odd evening that we might eat out, and the rest of the week I just hang out in my base layers until shower and bed time. If I'm honest, most of my social exploits on a ski trip happen après-ski at the bottom of the slopes anyway, and once I'm back at the apartment I'm far too tired to venture out again!
Of course, in a snow-packed resort you need good boots, but again, that's all you need. Everyone parties in their boots. I wear mine on the flight to save space in my luggage. I even wear my ski jacket as a winter coat - though I do roll it up into my carry-on bag before I board.
The usual holiday packing rules also apply. Take travel-sized toiletries and sunscreen; roll everything to squeeze into the corners of your bag; and use packing cubes to compress everything down still further. If you're really clever with your organisation, you don't even need to unpack when you get there.
Simply live out of your cubes!
So try your next ski trip with only a cabin bag. Let us know how you get on, and tell us your top tips for travelling light.