Ensuring you have the correct ski gear for all conditions is a challenge in itself but when you have to think about your Little Skiers as well, it's enough to make the calmest of parents start to stress.
So here is a really great guide detailing what to pack for your children and recommended brands and products that we think really hit the spot…
Never use cotton thermals for skiing, you must have active thermals. This is the most important first layer to wick away any moisture and prevent chilling when on chair lifts. Icebreaker is one of our favourite premium ski thermals brand but if the kids are looking for something a little funkier, Odlo have designed some great sets that the kids will be racing to get on in the morning and for
This is an important second layer and provides the warmth that you need under a ski jacket. Trespass microfleeces are super soft, really warm yet unrestrictive when skiing. They have a half zip neck that helps keep all the stored heat inside the fleece as well as acting as a handy way of allowing in fresh air when needed.
The key to warm ski socks is the merino wool content which will provide the extra warmth needed under boots. The ski socks should also have natural anti-bacterial properties and be breathable. Barts do a fantastic range of kids socks that tick this box and are completely child friendly in terms of their designs and most importantly they stay up! Make sure all seams are flat loc stitched or you will get uncomfortable pinch points.
These provide extra protection around the neck area against bitter winds at the top of mountains and on chairlifts. A microfibre tube can fit under a helmet for extra warmth and to cover more of the back of the neck without adding bulk under a ski jacket. Neck warmers are easy to pull up over the nose and chin for extra protection when on ski lifts or protection against the sun on high UV days. A skiing balaclava is ideal for higher altitude ski resorts or early skiing trips when temperatures can be consistently below zero. Buff offer a huge range of neckwarmers that are suitable for all ages, from babies to grown ups!
Ideal for high altitude skiing or early season skiing holidays - get a ski school set of 6 hand warmers to save money and keep all of the family warm on the slopes. The glove liners are also really useful worn on their own when back at home, on the football pitch or playground.
For colder resorts look for earflap designs, ideally fleece linings for extra warmth. The Didriksons Biggles Cap is great to keep ears warm and stays in place with an under the chin strap.
There are so many options with kids ski jackets, and as with most of the other layers its essential that it is breathable and allows moisture to escape that has built up during skiing. All of our ski jackets offer this but most have a whole host of other really great features – detachable hoods, taped seams, ski pass pockets, breakaway buckle for gloves and so much more. Use the filter to select technical features when browsing the shop such as " extra warm for colder resorts" if you are skiing in USA or Canada, skiing early season or in a higher resort.
These must be waterproof! Longer cuffs are great for preventing snow entering the ski jacket sleeves and mittens are generally considered warmer than ski gloves. Barts Tec Ski Gloves and Hestra are two popular skiing gloves brand with good solid reviews for all styles.
It is essential that you protect your children’s eyes from the glare off the snow - even if they are not skiing we would recommend you protect your child and ski goggles must offer 100% UV protection. UVEX is a German brand and Bolle is French, the two most popular ski helmet and goggles brands on the market and the quality and fit is fantastic.
Sun Cream Protection & Lip Salve:
Look for mountain formulas designed for freezing temperatures - Manbi Ski Sun Protection tubes come with a neck cord to keep it to hand all day long.
With 3 litres worth of space, the Trespass rucksacks have plenty of room for a favourite toy, snacks or colouring books. Plus, the handy side mesh pockets are ideal for keeping items like water bottles, juice cartons or even gloves within easy reach. Note - some ski resorts no longer allow rucksacks for ski school children so consider taking small drinks bottles or pouches that fit into pockets.
These must be thermal lined, waterproof and have sufficient grip on the sole for walking in icy areas around the resort. And most ski boots can be used for winter wear in the UK so its important to buy boots that are lightweight and easy to get on and off without parental assistance! Kamik and Sorel have some fantastic boots that are functional and great to look at.
The key here is not to pack too much – the children are likely to spend most of their non skiing time playing in the snow in their ski gear or relaxing in the chalet in their base layers and fleeces. So just a few extra items are all that’s required to bridge the gap when you head out for the odd meal in the evening.
A few other optional extras:
- Slippers, Chalet shoes and/or crocs
- Toddler Plastic Skis and/or plastic fun Sliders - good for children not attending ski school or for apres ski fun in the snow
- Ski Trainer and/or Ski Tip Connector - ideal for teaching your children to ski
- Ski Helmet covers – these jazz up hired helmets and are perfect for identifying your child on crowded pistes
- Travel Toys – essential for passing the time on the plane and transfers!
Ski equipment hire:
And finally, the ‘don’t leave the house without’ list:
- Passport Photos - some child care providers and ski schools ask for adult ID as well as a passport photo of your child - check prior to departure
- Insurance documents
- European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)
- Hotel or holiday company booking documents
- Flight tickets