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Ski bookings winter 2018

 
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Astorchamonix



Joined: 25 Dec 2014
Posts: 90
Location: chamonix, French alpes

PostPosted: Sat Nov 04, 2017 1:41 pm    Post subject: Ski bookings winter 2018 Reply with quote

Hi everyone,

We have noticed a significant drop in winter bookings for next ski season (2018). Just wondering if this is the same for everyone or whether we are just personally having a poor season??
The last few years we haven't had great snow in Chamonix, so I wonder whether this is implicated, or whether the poor exchange rate is to blame (although we have dropped our priced to try to mitigate this).
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Hells Bells



Joined: 30 Apr 2005
Posts: 13109
Location: French Alps

PostPosted: Sat Nov 04, 2017 2:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My own are not quite as good as I would expect either . Christmas and New Year, and two of the French half-term weeks are still empty. They are what we rely on as the main rental income, other weeks are a bonus.
We were there ourselves last Christmas and although the UK press was full of reports of poor snow, we skied every day except one, and that wasn't weather-related, the links between the villages were all open, and only a few exposed pistes and lower ones without snow-making weren't skiable. I concentrated on French visitors over the summer, so wasn't reliant on the exchange rate. Trying the same for the winter.
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Ecosse



Joined: 29 May 2014
Posts: 657
Location: Saint Gervais les Bains, France

PostPosted: Sat Nov 04, 2017 5:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's not you, Astorchamonix, it's the season. Everyone's the same and in your sector of the market (you're an up to 6 apartment, aren't you?) potential guests know they can hold out until the last minute and, if the snow suddenly arrives, take advantage of the many apartments still available.

We've found it very slow this year - amazingly we do have Christmas (and New Year) booked, but I think it's our size that's helped us with that, too - there aren't many 20 bed places around and the Christmas guests haven't booked it for a ski holiday, they've booked it for a family gathering. It'll be a disappointment if there's not snow for them, but they can still enjoy the big catch up... whereas your potential guests don't want to take the risk of sitting around in a flat on their own, without the same home comforts, watching the drizzle outside. On the plus point, we never get last minute group bookings (it's too hard to organise 5 families at short notice) whereas, if the snow comes, you're in a much better position to fill your empty weeks last minute.

The only suggestion I can make, to increase your potential for a last minute booking, is to list your property on Le Bon Coin (i.e filling with French last minuters who don't have to source flights). It's ridiculously cheap for a 2 month listing (less than 30 for the 'feature back at the top of the list each week' option) and and, while there are a lot of time wasting bargain hunters, certainly for us it's been the best listing site for winter bookings. You need to have your ad up in French (and respond in French) and it's a good idea to prep your ad on a Thursday, so that it's reviewed by the site on Friday morning, and live by lunch time... just in time for the hacked off office workers to start dreaming about their ski holiday during their lunch break.
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Hells Bells



Joined: 30 Apr 2005
Posts: 13109
Location: French Alps

PostPosted: Sat Nov 04, 2017 7:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I.put my place on there in the summer. No bookings for summer but did pick up a winter one after a bit of discussion on price.
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Martha



Joined: 16 Apr 2006
Posts: 2138
Location: Chamonix

PostPosted: Sun Nov 05, 2017 8:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In general the trend I've been hearing isn't great so I would say it is the season, not you. We are lucky enough to be bucking it, I have eleven weeks booked so far of whom six are returning clients.

"The last few years we haven't had great snow in Chamonix" - this is true...but at least we have had some! It must be much harder in places like Megeve and LGB. I remember reading last year that Christmas bookings were 20% down in the the smaller lower stations :/

I agree with Ecosse - I know for sure that at least four of our returning groups are not so hugely bothered about skiing. They want to come and enjoy the get-together, ski a bit, go to Montenvers etc. I am profoundly grateful for these easygoing clients!

And I also agree that people are waiting, and Le Bon Coin is a good idea, to pick up French guests. The Euro is definitely a factor (about half of our guests are Eurozone this year, the most ever), but I think unreliable snow is even more of one.

The long term forecast is pretty optimistic for Chamonix this year so I'd get some ads ready for Le Bon Coin and maybe Facebook. If the promised December snowfall arrives I think there will be a bit of a rush as people decide 'it's on'.

I hope so because the Alps could seriously use a good snowy Christmas : /
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