Our family of ski bunnies is heading south this winter, but not to the beach. Instead, we’re going to Jay Peak, VT. Sure, we’re excited about the resort’s fabulous snow and awesome indoor water park, but it was the fine print saying they accepted Canadian cash at par that sold us. Here are some family-friendly ski resorts offering discounts to we the north:
1. Jay Peak Resort
The Spot: Jay Peak, a true BFF to Canadians, was the first supporter of the loonie-at-par back in the 1980s. Its 78 trails offer options for first-timers and experts alike.
The Deal: With proof of residency, the resort accepts Canadian cash at par for lift tickets, access to the Pump House Indoor Waterpark, Nordic Ski & Snowshoe Trails, Ice Haus Indoor Arena, lessons, and equipment rentals on property. Be sure to check the fine print, though: at resort retail shops and dining outlets, Canuck bucks are accepted but with exchange rates applied. Credit card lodging deposits reserved online will be charged in US funds, but you can pay the remaining half in Canadian cash at par upon check-in.
The Bonus: Canadians can purchase a season’s pass for Jay Peak at par, either in cash at the resort (proof of residency is required), or by mailing in a cheque and application form. The pass will give you access to extra discounts on lessons, waterpark access and more, plus cheaper lift tickets at nine different mountains, including Pats Peak, NH, Wintergreen Resort, VA and Shawnee Peak, ME.
830 Jay Peak Road, Jay, Vermont (802) 988-2611 jaypeakresort.com
2. Holiday Valley
The Spot: Popular with Canadians since the late 1950s, Holiday Valley is a three-hour drive south of Toronto. The mountain offers day and night skiing with 11 family-friendly quad chairlifts, tubing and adorable Snow Monsters – giant costumed beavers, pigs and tigers – on the slopes.
The Deal: During Canadian Friendship Week (January 2-8, 2017), you can purchase lift tickets, book lessons and rent equipment at par using Canadian cash or cheque. For Cabin Fever Days, purchase a $25 voucher at one of several Canadian stores – including Corbetts in Oakville and Source for Sports in London – to redeem for an eight-hour lift ticket valid on February 2 or March 14, 2017. Deals for March 12-17, 2017 include up to two kids skiing and staying free on a mid-week package.
The Bonus: Pick up a coupon at the Toronto Snow Show for a lodging package that allows guests to start skiing on check-in day. Plus, kids six and under ski free.
6557 Holiday Valley Road, Ellicottville, NY
(716) 699-2345 holidayvalley.com
3. Jackson Hole Mountain Resort
The Spot: Open as of November 24, Jackson Hole Mountain Resort features 2,500 acres of skiing, lots of deep powder plus spectacular surrounding national parks.
The Deal: For all skiers, Canuck or not, bring along a valid 2016-17 season’s pass from any ski hill and get 40% off your lift ticket. Arrive before December 23, and get 10% off your condo rental, plus two free days of skiing when you book four nights of lodging. Other deals just for Canadians include lift tickets and lodging discounted by 25-30%, making them equivalent to ‘at par’ pricing. Some packages also include $200 or $300 (USD) airline credits per person if booked by December 1st at (888) 838-6602.
The Bonus: Other fun winter activities nearby include guided fat bike tours, snowmobiling, sleigh rides and wildlife tours.
3395 Cody Ln, Teton Village, WY (888)-DEEP-SNOW (3337-7669) jacksonhole.com
4. Smugglers’ Notch
The Spot: Smuggs, as it’s known by its legions of fans, recently added a ski and snowboarding learning area for children aged 3-6, plus there are lots of non-skiing activities for kids including puppet-making, sledding on inflatable air-boards and snow art.
The Deal: The resort offers Canadians 25 percent off several Smugglers' winter vacation packages. Prices start at $129 per adult and $99 per child aged 3-17 per night for condominium lodging, daily lift tickets, snow tubing, access to the Nordic cross country ski and snowshoe trails, heated pool and hot tubs, guided winter walking, and daily family activities. One package, the Winter Experience, includes non-skiing activities.
The Bonus: With proof of residency, Canucks can purchase a ticket on any Northern Territory Tuesday ticket beginning December 3, and receive a Buy-1-Get-1-FREE full-day 3-mountain lift ticket valid for that day. The offer excludes holidays listed on promo page, and cannot be combined with other deals.
Plus, all packages are backed by Smugglers' family fun guarantee: if anyone enrolled in a learn-to-ski or snowboard program doesn’t enjoy it, the resort will refund the entire program fee.
4323 Vermont Route 108 South, Smugglers' Notch, VT (800) 419-4615 smuggs.com
5. Loup Loup Ski Bowl
The Spot: Winthrop – population 400 – must love Canadian tourists, because most businesses in town offer loonie-at-par deals. Located about 30 minutes from the Canadian border, Loup Loup’s 1,240 vertical feet of ski and tubing runs will thrill kids and parents alike. Plus, the region is home to Methow Trails, the largest cross-country ski area in the U.S.
The Deal: Lift tickets, ice-skating at Winthrop Ice Rink and cross-country skiing are charged at par. Need equipment? Cascades Outdoor Store rents cross-country ski stuff at par. Nearby hotels including Chewuch Inn, accept our loonies as if they were US cash between December 15-March 30, but blackout dates do apply between Christmas and New Year’s.
The Bonus: At Methow Trails Cross-Country Ski Area, kids ski and snowshoe free every day.
97 FS 4200 100 Road,Winthrop, WA (509) 557-3401 skitheloup.com
6. Dry Hill Family Ski & Tubing Area
The Spot: About an hour from Gananoque and Kingston, Dry Hill Ski Area is geared towards families, with gentle slopes, a snow tubing park and a complete instructional program for kids, including skiing and snowboarding lessons. Après ski, warm up at the relaxing outdoor Fireside Lounge before heading out again: the hill and tubing park are open for day and night winter fun!
The Deal: Dry Hill has offered at-par pricing for Canucks for 35 years. Use Canadian money at par for lift tickets, skiing or snowboarding lessons, as well as equipment rental. Contact the hill directly for more details.
The Bonus: Purchase a package of four days and four nights of skiing and get an extra day and night free (a $240 value). Plus, more than a dozen other area businesses, including the Ponderosa Steak House and Candlewood Inn & Suites also accept our loonie at par, according to the Greater Watertown-North Country Chamber of Commerce.
18160 Alpine Ridge Road Watertown, NY (800) 379-8584 skidryhill.com
7. Boyne Mountain & Boyne Highlands
The Spots: Boyne’s resorts, located in lower northern Michigan about two hours from Sault Ste. Marie and four hours from Windsor, have been offering fabulous deals for Canucks for 30 years.
The Deal: Both properties offer Canadian March Break at par, provided items are paid in cash or by cheque. Some of the many family-friendly activities available that week include snowshoeing, tubing, ice skating, a kid’s adventure camp (ages three months-12 years), a zip line adventure tour down the mountain, complimentary wagon rides, storytelling hours, movies and bonfires with s’mores. There’s also beer-tasting for the grown-ups!
The Bonus: The nearby Avalanche Bay Indoor Waterpark and arcade are also offered at par if you charge these activities to your room.
8. Sunday River Resort
The Spot: With eight mountain peaks and 135 trails and glades spread across 870 acres, Sunday River Resort is a winter lover’s dream. Both day and night skiing are available, and about a third of the runs are perfect for beginners.
The Deal: While the resort doesn’t offer specific at-par specials, they do have two family-friendly vacation weeks – during New Brunswick’s March 6-10 holiday and Nova Scotia and Ontario’s March 13-17 break – featuring events and activities, including tubing, live entertainment and fireworks. Discounted lift tickets, ski-and-stay packages and group rates for Quebec residents are available through resort partner Express Tours for Quebec’s March break week.
The Bonus: During Sunday River's Children's Festival Week (January 8-12, 2017) kids can stay slope side, rent equipment, ski, and learn to ski or snowboard for free with a minimum three-night stay (and adults pay $159USD per person). Special activities that week include fire dancers, scavenger hunts and more.
97 Summit Road, Newry, ME