Ski Wear for Children: What to pack, what to Hire...


Child in pink sitting in the snow eating someTo get the best out of your family ski holiday, your children need to feel warm and comfortable at all times.

Here's our kids ski gear checklist so you don't forget to pack anything.  We've also suggested what equipment you should buy or hire:

First things first. Kids grow year on year.  So, if you don't want to spend a fortune on ski gear only for them to grow out of it next year then you need to beg, borrow or.... er just beg and borrow what you can.  It's important that your children have good fitting gear and ankle swinging ski pants are just not the done thing.

Ski gear for children on the slopes:

Kids Ski jacket and ski pants or an all in one ski suit, warm and waterproof.  As to whether to choose seperates over an all in one, here's what you need to consider.  The all in one is great for stopping little ones getting snow down their trousers and up their jackets as they spend a lot of time on the snow.  However, if they are likely to have to go to the toilet on their own in childcare, then you might want to consider seperates.

Thermal layers. Children won't enjoy skiing if they're cold.  Layer them up with thermals and fleeces.  It's easy to peel one off if they get too warm, but hard to warm them up once they're cold. 
Ski gloves We asked some BabyAbroaders whether mittens or gloves were best and the result was..... inconclusive! Mittens generally keep hands warmer, but some felt the children would find drag/button lifts easier wearing gloves. So this one comes down to personal choice. Just make sure they are waterproof ski gloves as normal gloves and mittens aren't good enough for the job.

Ski socks, these special socks are designed for comfort and warmth and they don't have seams that would rub in the boots.  These are ESSENTIAL.  Take a few pairs.

Ski goggles, (or sunglasses).  Kids ski goggles are easier for them to wear than sun glasses in that they don't fall off.  Make sure that the straps are long enough to fit around the helmet and make sure they have a high UV rating.  You can choose from dark lenses for sunny days or lighter yellow ones if the vision is bad.  If you don't think you'll be taking the children onto the slopes if the weather is bad, then plump for the dark lenses.  Take sunglasses for in the day when they're not skiing. 

Sun glasses. Check the UV rating and make sure they are wrap around for full protection.

Childrens Ski helmets.  These are usually supplied when you hire skis and are compulsory for children at some resorts.  One BabyAbroader suggests your child wears a thin balaclava under the helment for hygiene reasons, but do make sure if you do this one, that it doesn't stop the helmet from fitting properly.

Children's Ski boots, It is worth hiring these rather than buying.  Children will obviously need new ones every year.  The local hire shop will make sure that they are fitted properly. 

And finally.... Kids Skis! Again, these are best hired at your destination.  The hire shop will check the height of the skis for your children and they'll need bigger ones each year.  It saves you having to carry them too!  Try for discounts of up to 50% of resort walk in prices in Europe.

And for kids Apres Ski...

For when they're not skiing they will need: snow boots, ones that are warm, comfortable and waterproof (forget wellies; they aren't warm enough) and a cosy hat and it's probably best to pack a couple of pairs of warm mittens

Where to buy your kids ski wear...

Kids ski wear package for girlsKids ski wear packages for boysWe particularly like the ranges at the Outdoor Megastore.  Once again this year they  have put together some excellent value children's ski wear packages such as these here.  They include kids ski jackets, salopettes, thermal underwear, hats and gloves and are great value.

They also offer excellent accessories such as kids ski goggles, available for even the tiniest of skiers, childrens snow boots and fleeces.  Check out their offers and great deals at the Outdoor Megastore online shop.

Photo (top) courtesy of somma1977 via flickr