With social distancing and isolation measures, the pandemic outbreak has brought rapidly raised anxiety and stress levels. Still, as the winter season is coming, and the numbers of coronavirus cases are increasing, the set restrictions affect everyone directly – getting frustrated and worried. And this is where the outdoor activities are coming into play. Enjoying the Alps in winter is a fantastic way of changing the usual environments for individuals, staying physically and mentally healthy.
For most resorts in Europe, the mid of November flags the start of winter-sports season, but things are not so straightforward in the 2020/2021 season for both businesses and winter-sports activists. What is the new normal for planning and preparing for a ski trip during the COVID-19 pandemic? How can tourists enjoy their winter sports holidays, at the same time, staying safe and risk-free? Explore in the article!
Planning winter holiday despite of COVID-19 restrictions
Society, faced with the reality of new normal, working from home, home-schooling, and the physical contact starvation, strengthens the importance of looking after mental and physical health. It’s essential to maintain well-being during the pandemic outbreak.
While coronavirus has thrown considerable uncertainty into this year’s winter sports season, one thing remains the same. First and without any doubt, skiing and snowboarding will stay the very best winter holiday activities. Powdery snow will soon cover the peaks of the alps, beckoning outdoor enthusiasts to enjoy the ride and full lungs of fresh air, clean environment, and a little tickle of adrenaline. The significant difference for ski resorts this year will be drastically reduced capacity, to avoid crowds and making sure that all winter sports activists stay safe and healthy.
Skiing and snowboarding safe amid pandemic
Now, the European winter resorts are picking up the pieces and strategically thinking how to safely be ready and open this winter, adapting to the new normal.For instance, in France, Austria, and Switzerland, ski resorts in the mountain lift networks follow the same rules as for public transport. For every resort visitor, facemasks are obligatory, and hand sanitizer is available in every station.
In Tyrol, Austria, the resort staff undergoes weekly NHS tests to prevent any risks and spread of the disease. Apart from the above mentioned, winter resorts are now shifting their business models from offline to online. Tourists now have more opportunities to purchase ski passes online. The purchase can also be combined with Covid-19 contact tracing apps and a variety of add-ons, including insurance.
Lastly, all shops, hotels, and public areas have all sanitary measures in place – floor marks to ensure the social distancing, cleaning standards, and hydro alcoholic gel dispensers available for everyone. To make a safe holiday and stay in resorts, some skiing regions came up with a regional app for the visitors. With a few clicks, guests have the opportunity to make reservations and book meals in the restaurants via mobile application.
Equipped and covered for winter holidays
No doubt, at this time, skiing and snowboarding will be different than in the pre-Covid seasons. To ski and snowboard-safe and safeguard itself, the winter-sports tourists will not need only a pair of hand-sanitizers and masks but should be equipped with a proper insurance cover, covering costs and losses in case of corona illness. However, cancellations due to lockdown are not covered. The digital insurance cover can be integrated into ski pass booking, this way, winter sports enthusiasts can decrease any uncertainty, covering the cancellation costs for individuals in cases of COVID-19 disease.
In theory, for winter season 20-21, skiing and snowboarding activities should still be attainable and safe despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The activities take place outdoors, having face coverings as standard apparel and from the ski-resorts side, ensured social distancing and security measures being in place.
Most ski resorts are equipped with all safety measures needed for a smooth and safe winter holiday. Ensured social distancing, mandatory masks, signposted routes, highest sanitary standards, and COVID-19 tests for the employees working in the hotels, campsites, hostels of skiing areas – these are some of the measures implemented from resorts to guarantee for skiers and snowboarders a safe and pleasant holiday. As we see from the above mentioned, all ski resorts take very good measures, but they all lack an anti-corona insurance package.
To conclude, the winter season 2020/2021 will be way much different than the pre-Covid season. However, with safety measures and insurance cover provided, winter sports enthusiasts will be granted an excellent opportunity to escape from everyday worries, conquering the highest peaks of the alps, and enjoying the wildest and steepest slows with a dose of adrenaline!