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Trends How many skiers book a return trip to the same resort in the summer?

photo of the author Gregg Blanchard

Seasonal crossover is a big question in the ski industry, and rightly so. With a loyal, engaged group that tends to create traditions with their ski vacation behavior, activating these guests during opposite seasons could be priceless. But how many winter travelers are already coming in the summer? And visa versa? Here’s what we found.

The Goods
To find our answer we looked at a dozen mountain resorts across three seasons. We analyzed was how many lodging guests during one season booked lodging again at the same resort during an opposite season within two years of their original visit. We broke these out by in-state vs out-of-state guests and plotted it below.

seasonal-crossover

Among out-of-state guests, 7.0% of those who booked lodging during any given winter returned during the following to summers. That number is 6.1% for summer guests who returned during the following two winters. For in-state guests, 2.4% of winter guests returned in summer with 3.2% of warm weather lodgers returning during the colder months.

What This Means
Truth be told, there simply isn’t the crossover we were hoping for. And looking closer at the demographics of each seasonal groups indicates that for all intents and purposes, it’s the same guests coming in each season.

The question then becomes how do we break out of these demographic silos? It is attitudinal? Is it the product? Do summer guests need a different program or daily structure than winter guests? And what does a summer “ski day” look like? If summer business is going to grow, we’ll need to find an answer to these, and other, questions.

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