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Top 5 ski destinations on a budget

14th December 2012 Print

With ski season fresh on the horizon, it is the peak time of year to book a ski-orientated break.

However, with many families, groups and couples alike, who share a love of the slopes but who are feeling the pinch, a skiing holiday can seem a little out of the budget, especially as pricing up a regular skiing break for a family of five can very soon total up to thousands.

HI has a variety of hostels available in ski locations, which are all reasonably priced - even over the peak season - and offer family, double, single and multi-share rooms. Each hostel is within easy reach of a mountain cable car station and can offer advice and help with booking ski lessons, hiring equipment and participation in other winter inspired activities.

The great advantage about staying at a hostel is not only the affordable accommodation, but also the atmosphere - as many other like-minded travellers will also be staying in the hostel, as well as other keen skiers who will be more than happy to advise you of events and nearby activities.  

1 - Scuol Hostel (Switzerland)

The very modern and expensively decorated Scuol hostel is conveniently located within a five minute walk of the Scuol Tarasp Railway Station, making it easily accessible and a great destination for those visiting from the UK.

The hostel's peak time is during ski season, from December through to April, however it offers affordable and high quality accommodation for those on a budget all year round. For winter sports enthusiasts, the main mountain cable car station is located directly opposite the hostel and there are several nearby ski hire shops for those wishing to try it out for the first time.

The hostel provides half board accommodation, with a three-course evening menu, free Wi-Fi and an open fire - in case the cold weather gets a bit too much!

Family, double, single and twin rooms are available.

Prices start from £38.07 per night, half board.

2 - Interlaken Hostel (Switzerland)

As one of our newer hostels, Interlaken provides guests with the ultimate ski lodge experience - with the added benefit of modern décor and facilities. Nestled within the mountains, the hostel is close to ski lifts and ski rental shops, and can help organise participation in a variety of winter sports.

With a south facing terrace, the hostel offers breath-taking views of the surrounding mountains and the cosy lounge with an open fireplace is open 24 hours a day for guests who are feeling the cold! It is certified ecological and has been fitted with water and energy saving devices, which encourage guests to be eco-friendly too.

A variety of family, double and group rooms are available throughout the ski season.

Prices start from £25.29 per night.

3 - Lenzerheide-Valbella (Switzerland)

With views overlooking the picturesque Lake Heid and the mountainous landscapes of the Valbella resort, this popular hostel is perfect for nature lovers and ski enthusiasts alike. The hostel is located directly adjacent to the Valbella ski lift and is within easy reach of nearby ski rental shops and restaurants.

An evening meal, breakfast and Wi-Fi is included in the room price, and the hostel staff are on hand to ensure you have access to local information and tips on how to enjoy your skiing holiday to its full potential. For adventure seekers, who want to enjoy some fast-paced fun off the skis, a visit to the nearby alpine slide 'Pradaschier' is a must. The 3km toboggan run is Europe's longest and has even been described as 'better than some roller coasters'.

A variety of family, double and group rooms are available throughout the ski season.

4 - Whistler (Canada)

This brand new, purpose built hostel played not only provides affordable accommodation within walking distance of the popular ski resort, Whistler, but it also played a large part in the 2010 winter Olympics, so who knows, perhaps you could stay in one of the Olympic Gold Medalists room during your stay? Just minutes from the ski slopes, the hostel is in the ideal location for winter sports enthusiasts.

As well as providing a state of the art ski/snowboard area for guests, the hostel has a TV lounge with a DVD library, a café and bar, as well as an outdoor terrace, offering winter BBQ's for guests during the ski season. Accommodation is arranged into family, double and single rooms, each with their own en-suite bathroom.

A variety of family, double and group rooms are available throughout the ski season.

Prices start from £42.49 per night (double room).

5 - Lake Louise Alpine Centre (Canada)

Nestled in the heart of the Canadian Rockies, surrounded by majestic mountains, alpine meadows and gem-like lakes, HI-Lake Louise Alpine Centre is the destination of choice for budget-conscious travellers who want to experience a world class ski resort.

For guests who wish to recover from the cold, the hostel also offers a sauna, a cosy fire lit library and a licensed bar. Similarly, staff of the hostel can assist in organising a variety of winter inspired activities such as husky sledding, cross-country ski trails and hiking.

A variety of family, double and group rooms are available throughout the ski season.

Prices start from £17.31 per night.

To view more information about any of the hostels or to book, visit

More Photos - Click to Enlarge

Whistler Scuol Hostel Scuol Hostel