Spring is the time of the year when marketers of multi-resort season passes promote their best pricing for next season’s pass – even before the current season is over. Typically an “early-bird” deadline is set to encourage prospective buyers to commit six to seven months before they can even use the pass. The Coronavirus interrupted some of those plans. Many destination resorts made the decision to close earlier than usual. And, while several are on sale now, as of March 31, no “early-bird” 2020-21 purchase deadlines have been advertised.
The newest multi-resort season pass – The Indy Pass – is not only waiting until September 1 to even start sales, it also is offering discounts and credits due to the effects that the virus had on resort operations. A press release issued by Indy Pass representatives said: “If you were not able to redeem ANY tickets on your Indy Pass we will provide you with a 30% discount on next season’s pass. If you purchased a pass after February 17th at our late season price of $139, and were not able to use it, we will credit 100% of your purchase towards a full-priced pass for next year”.
Currently, the Indy Pass represents 47 resorts for the 2020-21 season, 40 of which have no black out dates. More could be added. The cost remains the same as this season at $199. Purchasers can use the pass twice at each member resort. Unlike some season pass plans, resorts clustered in three distinct parts of the country – Pacific NW, Midwest and the East Coast. Most are smaller venues that previously did not belong to Epic, Ikon or Mountain Collective pass programs and may not be as well known to the average consumer.
The Indy Pass is the brainchild of Doug Fish, chair of Fish Marketing, and the founder of Snovana, a ski/snowboard expo festival held each fall in Portland, OR.
“As skiers reckon with the premature end to a season that serves as their primary escape from the stresses of life, we wanted to make a small concession to those who had been planning to use their passes for spring skiing and had those plans cut short,” said Fish.
Ikon, Vail’s Epic Pass, the Mountain Collective and other season pass programs will be reviewed next.