In its second season, it looks like the Indy Pass again is poised to provide good value at an affordable price especially for skiers and snowboarders who plan to stay closer to home this winter or prefer to drive somewhere rather than get on an airplane. The Indy Pass is now on sale and 11 new resorts are joining the alliance along with dozens of independent lodging properties for the 2020-21 season. The Indy Pass now includes 50+ resorts and offers two days of skiing or snowboarding at each one.
New resorts include: Snow King Mountain, WY, Buck Hill Ski Area, MN, White Pine Ski Area, WY, Winterplace Ski Resort, WV, Cannon Mountain, NH, China Peak, CA, Crystal Mountain, MI, Granite Peak, WI, Lutsen Mountains, MN, Sasquatch Mountain, BC, and Tamarack Resort, ID.
According to Indy Pass creators, a recent survey of Pass holders showed that 80% used it for an overnight trip in 2019-20. With this in mind, a new lodging section has launched on the Indy Pass website. It features only independently-owned lodging properties that are operated by partner resorts or their affiliates in nearby ski towns. Indy Pass holders will receive a minimum 10% discount on stays.
With COVID-19 causing havoc and uncertainty among skiers and snowboarders this winter, the Indy Pass also includes the “Get America Skiing Promise” to help customers “buy with confidence while supporting North America’s independent ski areas”, according to organizers.
That means customers get a credit toward a 2021-22 pass if they use the pass less than four days. The breakdown is 20% for three days, 40% for two days, 60% for one day and 80% for zero days.
Meanwhile, the Ikon Pass added the addition of Red Mountain in British Columbia.
Big SNOW Reopens
In other industry news, after being shuttered since the beginning of Covid-19, the Big SNOW indoor ski/snowboard facility in East Rutherford, NJ reopened September 1 25% capacity and with enhanced safety measures in place, according to several news sources.
Management at Big SNOW said their “team members” (ie. staff) have received extensive health and safety training and will undergo daily health screenings and temperature checks prior to entering the facility. Face-to-face interactions within the center will be limited. Guests must purchase tickets online and in advance. Big SNOW has implemented scanning for arrival and entry in and out of the snow dome. Additionally, face coverings are required for all guests and team members, and gloves are required for all guests entering the snow zone.
VP of Marketing Hugh Reynolds noted that Big SNOW has also enhanced cleaning and sanitization in accordance with CDC and state health and safety guidelines. All high-touchpoint areas including counters, handrails, restrooms, seating areas and rental equipment, will be cleaned and sanitized regularly. Groups on chairlifts will be limited to only those who have arrived together.
According to a recent announcement, Big SNOW asks that guests make every effort to limit the amount of surfaces touched during their visit, and make use of hand sanitizer stations throughout the facility. Big SNOW asks that guests who are feeling sick, or have family members who have been sick, to please stay home.