Tag Archives: ski jobs

How to get your non ski friends to ski

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Convert your non-skiing friends! Send this post to them!

Skiing. It’s not a closed-group thing, quite the opposite actually, but if you’re a non skier it can be a little off putting coming into conversation with a bunch of regular skiers or snowboarders. “You’ve never been skiing? What do you mean you’ve never been skiing?!!” You end up either with the opinion that skiers are a bunch of incredulous idiots, or that skiing is actually worth a bash… perhaps you’ll get round to it one day…

But there are many good reasons for this wall of disbelief! Skiing is a joy, a buzz, a real thrill, and these days it’s nowhere near as pricey as it once was. So what do you mean you’ve never been skiing?!

1. Skiing is a wonderfully challenging and rewarding sport to undertake

Whether you’re a complete beginner mastering the intricacies of the snowplough turn or a seasoned expert well used to high speeds and big air jumps, there’s always somewhere to push yourself to improve. In Europe, for instance, the pistes are divided up into four colours representing their gradient; green, blue, red and black. The sense of satisfaction you experience when graduating to steeper terrain as you progress in the sport is fantastic, and really spurs you on to improve further. Equally for more advanced skiers, the buzz of landing a new jump or discovering and nailing a fresh powder field never really wears off.

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2. The Great Outdoors!

The special blend of clean, fresh air and magnificent Alpine peaks is a massive draw. Ski resorts today are mountain playgrounds and it’s easy to forget how remote you actually are. But stop and think – two thousand metres up with crisp white snow all around – these are scenes of rare beauty! Drink it in!

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3. Wonderfully hobby

Gathering a group of like minded friends for a week of challenging skiing, boozy après ski and lively banter is what some of the best memories are made of! It’s the joy of shared experiences… amazing fun with a group of mates. It’s also a great way to widen the social circle, because organising a large group of skiers almost invariably involves fresh introductions at the start of the week. Before you know it, you’re enjoying banter and laughs with friends old and new over a few refreshing après ski beers… joy!

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4. Great travel opportunities 

It’s an easily overlooked point, but skiing is also a great way to see parts of the world you’d never otherwise get to visit. Despite the British bars and boozy après ski which prevails in many resorts it’s perfectly possible to step off the beaten track, make an effort with the lingo and enjoy genuine cultural enrichment. Of course, such experiences are perhaps more fulfilling in the smaller, traditional ski resorts… Woe betide the poor sap who tries to order une grande biere s’il vous plait in Jack’s Bar. But there are myriad chocolatiers, patissiers and the like in resorts across Europe who would welcome your efforts. And quite apart from any linguistic foray you may make, exploring ski resorts in different countries is also a great way to try new cuisine. Savoyarde specialities such as tartiflette and foldue are well known classics, but there are plenty more where they came from.

In short, not only is skiing a fantastically challenging and rewarding pursuit, but it’s also amazing fun! Push your boundaries and test your mettle in spectacular scenery, live to tell the tale then gather the gang, save a few quid up and do it all again next winter!

Click here to look at our ski holidays to Meribel & La Tania

 


5 Ways to get your Summer Skiing Fix

5 ways to get that summer skiing fix

It is a long wait between ski seasons in Europe. The wait is almost bearable if you’re are a resort worker. But for most of us who can only fit in a one-week holiday, it is 51 long weeks. So what can you do to get your skiing fix during the long hot summer months?

1. Indoor and Dry Slopesindoor ski

There are 100’s of these dotted around the UK, some big and some very small. You can find a full list of slopes on the Ski Club of Great Britain web site. There will be one close to you and they should have a small range of ski hire equipment too. In fact, why you are at it, you may as well take some non-skiing friends along and try and tempt them into taking it.

If you can convince them to come on your next holiday you will benefit from amazing group discount, which is time well spent.

 

2. Water Skiing and Wakeboardingwater skiing

Admittedly it isn’t the same. For a novice, it can be a bit like spending time on a slushy drag lift and it can work out costing a lot more than a week’s skiing.  You will also get wet. But if all that doesn’t put you off then it is a great way to feel that comforting leg burn that you get after a good day hooning around the slopes.

51 THINGS TO DO UNTIL YOUR NEXT SKI HOLIDAY

3. Head Down Under

You could probably fit the whole of Australia’s and New Zealand’s ski runs into the Three Valleys or even the Meribel Valley, (not an actual fact). Sadly we don’t offer catered ski holidays there and there is a long flight to consider. But that shouldn’t put you off. The skiing is actually very good in both countries.

What more could you want from a bit of summer skiing than to be carving down Kangaroo Ridge with a tinny instead of a demis.

4. Create a Ski Holiday at Home

Catered chalet breakfast

One way to make you feel like your skiing this summer without leaving the house is to take it turns to be the chalet host. To help we have prepared a guide on how to create a ski holiday at home.

5. Find a Glacier in Europe to go skiing on this Summer

There are some wonderful glaciers that are open for skiing during the summer. You could even pop over for the weekend. Our favorite is located just down the road from our spiritual home of Meribel, in Tignes. There is also a great one in Zermatt although it will take you about an hour to get to it from the resort.

 


 

Or you could just spend the summer reading ski magazines, watching snowboarding videos and deciding which chalet you will stay in this winter.


How to help your body recover from skiing or snowboarding

Our guide to how you can help your body recover from a day skiing or snowboarding : Get the most out of your ski trip.

Do you plan to get ski fit for your next trip only to put it off and then suddenly you’re on a plane and you haven’t done any relevant exercises? Skiing and Snowboarding works parts of your body that you don’t use in everyday life. If you aren’t “ski body” ready there are going to be parts of you that will ache after a day on the slopes. There are things that you can do during the evening in your chalet to make you feel ready for the next day on the slopes.

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Stretching

Stretching is one of the best ways to help your body recover after skiing, it will help you to avoid sore muscles the next day. Stretching after a day of riding helps muscles return to their original position by removing the tension. During your post ski stretching the circulation of blood will return to your muscles allowing them to recover and repair. Make sure that you focus on stretching your leg muscles, glutes and lower back.

Here is a handy warm down guide from ski expert Warren Smith.

Warm up

Warming your muscles up a few hours after exercises can really help ease the pain and get your body back to it’s full potential. In many ski chalets you will find a hot tub or a sauna. Don’t mistake these for novelties that add a level of sophistication to your holiday, these are important bits of kit that can help your post ski recovery. Warming your body in a hot tub or sauna increases blood flow and allows more oxygen get to your muscles. Experts advise that you wait for several hours before hopping into a sauna or a hot tub after skiing or snowboarding and to make sure that you are thoroughly hydrated. Many sports therapists also suggest that you should wait until your a few days into your trip before indulging your muscles as the heat can also inflame your muscles and slow down the recovery.

… & in the morning

If you are an early riser or you don’t rush out onto the slopes you may want to use the time to warm up in the hot tub, sauna or shower. Warm muscles are less likely to be damaged during exercises.

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 GET FIT FOR YOUR NEXT SKI HOLIDAY

Massage

A great way to make sure you are ready for the next day on the slopes is to get a sports massage that works on the soft tissues around the most worked parts of your body. A massage after skiing should focus on your lower back and knee area. Having your body looked after like this will aid your relaxation and increase your recovery.

Ice Bath

Out of all the techniques this is probably the best at ensuring your muscles recover overnight. The chances that your chalet will have enough ice on hand to do this is unlikely but don’t worry. All you need is a bath at normal cold tap temperature, between 8°C and 10°C. The cold temperature will slow the inflammation and help get the recovery process working faster. You should go for two session of five minutes with a warm up in between. If there is a fresh dump of snow you could always jump in that.

Stay hydrated

All the above will be a waste of time if you don’t hydrate effectively at the end of the day. We all know that at altitude you lose water from your body faster than at sea level. If you are then taking part in a strenuous activity such as skiing or snowboarding you will become dehydrated even quicker. You body needs liquid to help with repairing muscles as well as to extract the nutrients from your food during the digestion process. Taking a drink directly after skiing will also lower your heart rate faster and ensure that you don’t spend the evening feeling fatigued. Please note that chalet wine is not an acceptable way to hydrate yourself!

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What does the end of the ski season mean to the staff in the ski resorts?

What does the end of the ski season mean to the staff in the ski resorts? 

Spring is in the mountains and that means many things. Things such as drink the bar dry nights, increased sightings of marmots, stones appearing on the piste, increased worry about getting your deposit back on your hire skis and of course the end of the winter ski season. But what does the end of the ski season mean to the staff in the ski resorts?

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Our staff will be starting to realise what this means very soon. To them it will seem a distant memory when they filled out their application form and then came and had an interview for a ski job with us. Since then, the potential we spotted in them will have been realised and they will now be developed professional caterers. Never, during playground chat, will they have thought that making a bed and cleaning bathrooms would be a path they would take and they definitely wouldn’t have considered the rewards it would also lead to.

Now as the last few weeks of guest arrive and depart and the chalets are prepared for a lonely summer, our chalet host will be starting to have one of two feelings. For some it will be Joy, for others it will be dread and some it will be both.

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The feeling of joy will come from the feeling of relief that they did it. It is hard to underestimate the pressure a chalet host is under. Many people take the job with mixed emotions of trepidation and excitement because is it far outside their comfort zone.  So to have completed a winter season in a ski chalet having cooked and cleaned for 200 people 6 nights a week is a massive achievement, especially when you have got consistently good reviews as our staff have done this season.

Joy will also be because they are looking forward to going home, for quite a few of our chalet host this will have been the first time that they have left everyone behind. When they do return they may have not seen their parents or partners for 6 months.

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But there is that feeling of dread too. In some jobs you work, then you go home, then you have a weekend and then you go on holiday. Working and living in a ski resort as a chalet host is all of those things in a day, every day, twice. It is a completely absorbing environment to be in. For many it will be the most intense few months of their lives. In some cases it is addictive and can lead to a whole life in the mountains.

When we reflect on the friend we have made and how far they will be away when we return home. When we consider the epic days we have had in the hills and how suddenly we won’t be skiing fresh tracks 30 minutes after getting that cake out of the oven. We will even reflect back at the great guests we have had, from the party animals to the clean freaks, and how we have enjoyed having them all to stay. When you consider all this you start to get a feeling of dread. Suddenly it will all be gone.

Still there is always next season…

Find out what its like to work for us.

Working for Alpine Action from Alpine Action on Vimeo.


5 Reasons why we think we are the best ski company to work for.

5 Reasons why we think we are the best ski company to work for.

We have worked hard to establish our reputation in the ski industry as providers of excellent ski holidays over the last 25 years. We have many guest that comeback every year to ski with us because they like the way we do things.  One thing that is very important to us is our staff. We know that we must have the best team every year to make sure we can provide the lovely ski holidays that we want to. This means making sure we have amazing and happy chalet hosts.

1. Staff Accommodation

Jim Duncombe used to specialise in seasonal recruitment and has worked for Natives.co.uk and other ski companies, we asked him for his thoughts on our accommodation.  “Working with some of the big tour operators, I have seen a big variety of staff accommodation. I once even spent a season in a triple bunk. However I have to say that Alpine Action staff accommodation is some of the best I have ever seen and is often coveted by other resort staff.”

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2. We are small and independent

Being small means that we can spend more time making sure our staff are looked after and have everything they need. It also means that we get to know all of our team well and can do as much as we can to support them and ensure they have a great season.

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3. Experienced Management

All of our management team have done many ski seasons and have worked for Alpine Action for a long time. This means that we know what is needed to make the winter a great experience for our team.  Ian our resort Director has lived in Meribel for over 20 years, this means that he knows a lot of people and is able to help our staff settle into their new home very easily. It also means that we have a great reputation and relationships with lots of companies in the resorts such as bars and hire shops.

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4. Skiing and Snowboarding

Sometimes a week’s ski holiday isn’t long enough and that is probably why most of us go and do a ski season. Because all our management team are all passionate skiers or snowboarders we know that getting out on the mountain is a big part of being a seasonnaire.  That is why we work hard to make sure you get as much time on the mountains as possible. We will even show you around so you know where the best runs are.

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5. Having fun

There is nothing worse than a boring job. Some people often leave their boring jobs to come and do ski season. During the winter we will make sure you have a great time. First of all you can be sure that the rest of the resort staff will become your new best friends and some may even stay best friends for life. I have just been the best man at my friend’s wedding, we met on a ski season 10 years ago. We also organise parties, days out and socials all throughout the season.

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For more information on working for Alpine Action and to find out about all the jobs that we have please go to our recruitment page.

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Please note that we can only accept applications from EU Passport holders, resident in the UK and those with a UK National Insurance number.


3 Valleys Snow Report – 30/1/15

FotorCreated3 Valleys Snow Report – 30/2/15

By Pete & Karolina 

It has been a snowing all week here in the 3 Valleys, we started off with a couple of centimetres of snow on Saturday night and then about 10 centimetres on Monday night and into Tuesday. We woke up on Thursday morning to a similar amount of snow and it is still snowing now as I pen this. It is set to continue snowing on Sunday with the heaviest snow falling on Thursday night. 

It has been cold this week and with the fresh snow the slopes have remained in good condition and are improving as the grooming team work their magic. The forecasters are saying that next week the snow is due to return on Tuesday and the temperatures are set to stay low. 

I think we will have to get a prediction from the guys at cab9 snowboarding more often as they said it would snow most of this week and it has! The skiing and snowboarding conditions are improving everyday and with the amount falling at the moment it’s looking good for skiing this half term week!

We are heading out nearly everyday to the slopes to get some footage of what the snow is like for you (I know, it’s a hard job! ;)) So check us out on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, get that tingly feeling in your feet and then come out and stay with us here in La Tania or Meribel!


How getting a ski job has changed

How getting a ski job has changed

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For many years, I, Jim Duncombe, have worked in the UK ski industry. For a large part of those years I have worked in the recruitment department of a large tour operator and as the recruitment consultant for seasonal jobs experts Natives.co.uk. During my time searching for the best staff for ski companies like Alpine Action and helping the less experienced people find work, I gave many talks and lectures about how to get a ski job. But I never really wrote down much of my advice.

The fact that the world was missing out on a written version of my vast knowledge of ski recruitment was brought to my attention when an email appeared in my Inbox. It was from my Aunt. My cousin wanted to do a ski season and could I help him? A request that I used to get quite a lot. Back then I would call and chat through the process and explain and help, as was my job. But this time I thought I shall reply in writing.

This is the part of the email that I received that concerns this blog “Also Lewis would like to do a ski season (hopefully only one!) He is a pretty competent skier and I thought ski hosting would be a better job than some others?  Would he need any qualifications and is it in fact a better job?”

I got two lines into this correspondence and decide to call and chat it through. Sadly no one was in so I replied in writing. “In regards to the ski job I will be honest and say that a.) ski hosting jobs are very rare these days… If I was going to do a season again and didn’t have the experience I would go for a Kitchen Porter role (KP). It is by far the easiest job with great hours, maximum ski time and limited customer exposure. Also the kitchen is a good place to work, you get fed better and will have a good group of people to go on the mountain with. It may not sound like the picture perfect job, washing dishes and peeling potatoes, but you won’t find a better work, ski, fun balance. If you like I can chat to him about his options, make sure his CV will get looked at and prepare him for interviews. I may even be able to help out finding him a job. It is a crowded place to get a job if you don’t have experience.”

I was quite surprised at the response I got:  “Do you really need a CV to be a kitchen porter!”


I should point out that my Aunt did a ski season her self although I think this may have been before the 80’s. I believe that back then to get a job you had to have been a) a girl b) know what a cooker was and c) have the ability to ask for a job. This is most definitely not the case now. We in the ski industry take the hiring of staff very seriously.

I explained that you must now have some work experience or qualifications. I had to explain that being a resort rep wasn’t just about organising a pub crawl. That most companies including Alpine Action do require a CV no matter what the job. She was surprised to learn that we don’t just employ people with posh names or good telephone manner. I think she was most amazed about the fact that we spend most of the summer searching for the best possible staff for our chalets.

Needless to say I promised that I would pull a few strings with my old contacts and see if I could find him a job, I hope I have some friends working for Crystal still.


How to get a job in Meribel or La Tania

How to get a job in Meribel or La Tania

We are on the lookout for staff to help us run our chalets for next winter. In particular we are looking for people who are in love so much that they believe that they could work and live together for a whole winter season.  Alpine Action are also looking for good friends to run two small chalets that are next to each other. On top if this we are also looking for Reps to be the face of Alpine Action, help guests and perform driving duties. To find out more about our ski jobs go to our recruitment pages.

Those are the jobs, but how do you get one? And what if you don’t get a job with us? How do I secure a job in the Alps next winter? Well the good news is that our resident blogger Jim, knows a thing or two about getting a job in the Alps. He has previously worked for one of the UK’s largest ski tour operator and he also worked for seasonaire experts Natives.co.uk as their recruitment manager for many years. Jim even helped us find some of our past staff. Here are his tips on getting a job in the Alps for the winter.

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First of all I would like to say I  can really recommend Alpine Action as a great company to work for in the winter. You may think that “I would say that”, seeing as though I regularly contributor to these pages, but the truth is that during my time at Natives I was always recommending Alpine Action to people looking for jobs in La Tania and Meribel. The reason for this is because they always looked after their staff and at the end of the season I always got great feedback from the staff that worked for Alpine Action.

Back to helping you get a job. First up Alpine Action always needs great cooks in the team. So if you are a couple, one of you needs to have a flair and a passion for cooking. Dionne loves her food and can spot someone who has the same love a mile away. So when applying you need to make sure your cooking experience and interest of food come across. As you can see from the Alpine Action website, food is a big part of the holiday experience and you need to be able to deliver that. The first way that you can prove this is by creating a great menu plan, that represents your skills and your style of cooking. Prove that you are a foodie and you could be invited to an interview with Alpine Action. If you do get an interview, then this is you next chance to wow Dionne and the team with your food knowledge. Bring along some samples of what you can make and prove that you can cook and bake!

I know from future experience that Alpine Action really want people that have a talent for looking after people. A chalet is a place that should feel like a home from home, and when guests are there they need hosts that can help them relax and have a great time on holiday. So when you are applying to Alpine Action you need to make them know that you can help achieve this. This also applies if you are applying for a Rep Job.

If you are applying for a Rep job you need to be aware of what it entails. First of all you need to remember that Rep is short for Representative and that is what you are expected to do, represent Alpine Action. This is the image you need to get across on your application form and when you attend an interview. You will also need a driving licence and be over 23 for insurance reasons.

But what if you don’t get a job with Alpine Action? They don’t employ that many staff as the only have a dozen chalets. But the good news is that there are hundreds of jobs out there and all of them are on the Natives website. No matter what your applying for you can help your chances by following my top 10 tips on how to secure a ski job.

1.       Follow the instructions that are on the application form.

2.       Give the ski company a great insight into who you are on your application.

3.       Attend a cookery course – These can increase your chances of finding a job by a huge amount.

4.       Always send a picture with your application – This helps them remember you, they get 1000’s of applications each year.

5.       Be on time and dress smartly for your interview. This is a real job and a real interview.

6.       Research the company you are looking to work for, are they right for you?

7.       Don’t leave it too late – All the best jobs will be gone before August.

8.       Apply to as many companies as you can.

9.       If you don’t have experience then get some.

10.   Stand out.

I hope that my advice helps and that you can secure a job in the alps for next winter either with Alpine Action or one of the many other ski companies out there. Good Luck. 


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