This holiday season many take to the slopes for a ski or snowboard vacation, such as visiting one of the famous resorts in Colorado or experiencing the champagne powder at Park City, Utah. For those who want to have some fun on the snow during the holidays, the following survival tips may come in handy.

Get a Packaged Deal

Resorts, such as Vail Resorts, often offer packaged deals that include a room rate and a lift ticket. This can be cheaper than buying individual lift tickets each day, and easier, as one pass is good for the entire vacation. The price may even include rentals for ski or snowboard equipment, although rental shops in town will also have package deals for the length of a stay.

Dress for the Weather

Knowing how to dress in layers is a winter necessity. In Colorado, it can be very warm during the day, with the snow reflecting heat and UV rays from the sun. During nighttime skiing, the thermometer can drop below freezing, and with wind chill it can be even colder. Bring plenty of clothes to stay warm and dry.

Get There Early, Leave Early

There’s nothing like skiing first tracks in the morning, when the slopes are freshly groomed. By getting in those runs during the morning and early afternoon, one can relax later in the day and rest those muscles in the hot tub.

Take a Break

Resting tired muscles s is not only relaxing for a skier, but can also help reduce accidents and injuries due to fatigue. After a few runs, take a break in the ski chalet to sip hot chocolate, warm up the hands, and chat with fellow skiers.

Ski Safely

Know the responsibilities of skiers and snowboarders on the slopes. When in doubt, ski in control, not going so fast as to cause an accident, and giving other riders enough space to maintain control. Also, stay on slopes that match ability level. Those who ride black diamonds on smaller ski hills back home may be out of their league at the big resorts. Keystone Resort has a Skier Responsibility Code, and has tips about skiing at high altitudes, as well as information about it’s Mountain Watch program.

Take a Class

Ski resorts offer professional instruction for all ability levels at the mountain ski school. Consider signing up for a class to sharpen skills to become a better rider. Maybe this is the year to jump from skiing blue runs to black, or to learn how to ride a snowboard in the terrain park. Learning new skills can not only be educational, but can add a new level of fun to the vacation.