The complete skiing packing checklist

A ski packing list has the potential to run to many pages. With a bit of pre-planning, though, you can take everything you need without breaking the scales at the airport.

Read our guide on what to take skiing and you’ll soon be on the slopes, instead of in the shops, when you get to your resort.

Skier legs and boots in skis on a ski lift with other ski lifts with skiers in them in background

Essential documents

  • Passports - Check well in advance of your ski trip that your passport has at least six months left before it expires then keep it in a safe place.
  • Travel tickets
  • Accommodation details
  • Ski hire details
  • Driving licence – if you plan on hiring a car when you get to your destination then this is a necessity on your ski packing list.
  • Travel insurance - Don't forget to take a note of your travel insurance details e.g., emergency contact phone numbers and policy number
  • Global Health Insurance Card - The Ghic is a ski list essential in EU countries but it only covers you for certain medical treatment and doesn’t include getting you airlifted off the mountain or flown back to the UK. Nor does it cover extra accommodation or transport costs for a family member should you need a long stay in hospital.
  • Before you go, take copies or pictures of all your essential documents and email them to yourself so you can always access them in case of loss on your ski holiday.

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Ski clothing

  • Waterproof, breathable ski jacket
  • Waterproof, breathable ski trousers
  • Ski goggles
  • Ski gloves - Whether you have gloves or mittens comes down to personal preference, but don’t skimp on quality – cold hands halfway up a mountain is no one’s idea of fun, so be sure to pack them for your winter sports holiday.
  • Ski hat
  • Glove liners
  • Neck warmer
  • Sunglasses - It may not be beach temperatures, but the sun can be harsh when you’re on the slopes, especially when it reflects off the white snow, so be sure to include them in your ski checklist.
  • Thermal tops
  • Thermal bottoms
  • Fleeces
  • Ski socks

Remember to borrow or buy as much ski clothing as possible at home as opposed to leaving it until you get to the resort, as prices tend to be very high at local shops.

Ski equipment

Ski equipment is another consideration for your ski packing list. You may well be hiring your equipment when you get to your resort, but if not, don’t forget to pack your:

  • Helmet - You can rent your helmet but most people prefer to take their own
  • Ski poles
  • Ski boots
  • Skis or snowboard – Or both, if there’s space left in the plane’s hold
  • Ski lock

Equipment theft is rare but it can happen, so take your own ski lock to make sure you’re not walking back down the mountain.

Other clothing

  • Walking boots - Make sure they have a good grip as you’ll be doing a lot of walking around your resort.
  • Hat
  • Gloves
  • Scarf
  • Jumpers
  • Jeans/trousers
  • T-shirts and tops
  • Underwear
  • Thermal base layers – your body will thank you at two in the morning when you’re wandering back to your accommodation.

Health and medication

  • Regular medication - If you take regular medication it’s vital you pack more than enough for your ski trip as you can’t guarantee the local chemist will stock it.
  • Copies of the prescriptions of any regular medication you take should be on your ski packing list, in case you need to see a local doctor to get more.
  • Painkillers
  • First aid kit, including plasters, bandages, antiseptic cream, cotton wool, anti-histamines, plus some safety pins and a pair of scissors.
  • Travel sickness tablets
  • Indigestion tablets
  • Sun cream
  • Aftersun
  • Lip balm
  • Muscle pain relief such as Deep Heat to ease your aches at the end of a long day on the piste.

Electronics

  • Mobile phone – think about getting a local SIM card when you arrive to cut down on call charges.
  • Fitbit – great for monitoring your skiing activity
  • GoPro camera
  • Tablet or e-reader
  • Chargers for everything
  • Plug adaptors
  • Power strip

Other items

  • A day pack to securely carry your phone, camera, water bottle and any layers you need to shed halfway up the mountain.
  • Multi-purpose tool kit
  • Spare passport pictures for your lift pass
  • Plastic bags for dirty or wet clothes
  • Water bottle
  • Packet of tissues - Getting a runny nose on the ski lift is a common occurrence, so keep a few travel-sized packets of tissues handy.
  • A good book should also be on your skiing checklist. Because you need to sit down and relax some time.
  • Hand and feet warmers - or, for the true ski gadget fan, rechargeable heated gloves.
  • High energy snacks
  • Ear plugs and eye mask
  • Swimwear, in case your hotel has a heated swimming pool.

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