"Dude" at Cole Sports at Park City Mountain Resort
This question seems to always come up for families who decide to take ski/snowboard trips. There is no right or wrong answer as advantages exist for both. With airlines fees for checked baggage this question has become even more of a cost item when planning your trips.
While there is no easy answer it can often be decided by the number of times you plan on actually going skiing/snowboarding. People who live near the slopes, or make multiple trips a year, probably already own all or part of their ski/snowboarding equipment. Most people start thinking about buying their own equipment when they ski/snowboard more than two weeks every ski season. On the other hand, people that ski/snowboard less are usually better off renting equipment. For kids the rental route, or a store that has a kids trade-up policy, is often the best option as they will out-grow equipment quickly.
Advantages of renting equipment
You do not have to carry equipment to the airport
Avoid airline baggage fees for checked baggage
Rental packages at Park City Mountain Resort are affordable and include all the equipment you need
Ability to exchange skis/snowboards during your trip to try different brands and styles. Rental equipment is the latest in technology and can be rented based on the present conditions. i.e POWDER days!
No expensive repairs or ongoing maintenance to worry about
Advantages of owning your own equipment
You know what you have and develop a comfort level with your equipment
You can have your equipment custom fitted to you.... example- On our December trip, three people in my family found out that they were skiing on boots that were 1-2 sizes too BIG. Thanks to "Dude" and Chris at Cole Sports at Park City Mountain Resort, my families new custom fitted boots are GREAT as they built a custom foot bed to match their foot and made canting/planing adjustments so that their knee and ankle were aligned. This ensured that their skis will be flat on the snow and they will get proper distribution of edging when they ski.
If you ski/snowboard more than two weeks a year it may be economical to own part, or all, of you equipment... i.e. custom fitted boots
No standing in long rental lines and you can hit the slopes as soon as you arrive
The advantage of having the ability to color coordinate your equipment to your clothing
If you decide to buy new equipment the best time is in late winter or early fall. Ski shops offer incredible deals on the current season's equipment to clear out summer inventory and to make room for next year's models. Another affordable option is to buy used or "demo" equipment. Most ski shops sell off their fleet of rental and demo equipment every season. You could get lucky and end up snagging a pair of top of the line skis or a snowboard that has only been used a few times.
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The views expressed on Snowmamas are those of the individual authors, who are independent contractors of Park City Mountain Resort, and may not be factually accurate. These views are not intended to reflect the opinions of Park City Mountain Resort, its owners, its management or its employees. Snowmamas' authors have or will receive a paid trip to Park City Mountain Resort or will receive other compensation for their participation as an author.