Falls no longer offer kids lessons

Discussion in 'Falls Creek' started by Drt, Jun 20, 2018.

  1. Drt

    Drt First Runs

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    I just found out that Falls no longer offer 2 hour kids lessons. How ridiculous.
    The reason I love to go skiing, is to spend quality time together with my children (11 and 8) on the slopes. However, I do like them to get professional instruction so that I don't teach them my bad habits. The instructors at Falls have always been great, and have set the kids with a brilliant ski base.

    My only option now then is to put them in ski school for the whole day!
    Do families really go to Falls only to pack their kids off to ski school and not see them all day? What is the point of a family ski holiday then? Or is this looked upon as day care for kids whilst the parents are off around the mountain and in the bars?

    I sent Falls an email and their response was: "The decision was made after a considerable amount of market research."
    Well I've been going to Falls for decades and was never asked about this, and find it hard how they market themselves as a family mountain, then break up the kids from their parents all day.

    Am I the only one that wants to ski with my kids?
     
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  2. Billy_Buttons

    Billy_Buttons A Local
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    What? unbelievable.
     
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  3. Tom from Melbourne

    Tom from Melbourne Hard Yards

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    Yes, and the half day lesson option has also been removed - so it's all day or private lessons.

    The only good news was when queried about if I could still remove the kids at 1pm (the old finishing time), I was advised that this was still possible, and I just needed to chat with the instructor when I dropped them in to ski school.
     
  4. mick chopps

    mick chopps Pool Room
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    Not sure how long you're up there for, maybe 1 day full lesson then the rest of the trip skiing with the fam? Being that the lessons kick off at 10am and finish at 3pm, you could squeeze an hour in either side with kids as well if they were up to it. Seems a bit ridiculous to remove the 2hr option altogether though.
     
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  5. Moondog55

    Moondog55 One of Us

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    Perhaps the full day only option is more profitable for Merlin
     
  6. mick chopps

    mick chopps Pool Room
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    clearly that would be the case. provided they don't push people away altogether by removing any other option.
     
  7. Apresski

    Apresski Pool Room
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    How old are your kids?
    Personally I liked the full day option, when they were young the full day, every day, meant that they went through a well orchestrated program and progressed quickly. When they were a little older they formed friendships in their ski class which contributed to their holiday.
     
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  8. mick chopps

    mick chopps Pool Room
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    2nd sentence, 11 and 8.... ;)

    I do like the idea of the full day program for really young kids or those who are just starting out. Imagine the solid blocks would be much better for skill development and progression.

    But equally for more intermediate skiers the 2hr lessons on consecutive days might be equally beneficial.
     
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  9. Karicta

    Karicta A Local
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    I’m yet to put my kids in ski school

    But, quite frankly I view this decision as ****ing ridiculous

    Depending on costs, it may even impact which mountain we go to
     
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  10. mr

    mr Part of the Furniture
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    Very weird and pretty sad to lose half day lessons IMO. We have always put our kids in morning lessons, mum and dad ski together in the morning, and we all ski together as a family or as friends and family groups depending on ability ('freeskiing') in arvos....or if the kids are young they just hang in the lodge, throw snowballs etc as they are worn out. The family sport aspect of skiing is the thing i like the most. There's plenty of whole day lessons where the kids lose interest.

    ive never been market researched either and we spend about 15 days each year

    Sadly i suppose this is happening at hotham.
     
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  11. mick chopps

    mick chopps Pool Room
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    at which point it wont be profitable for Merlin. That's the risk they take.
     
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  12. mr

    mr Part of the Furniture
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    some of us go to have fun! my kids do. i do. fun more important than progression or solid blocks!
     
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  13. mick chopps

    mick chopps Pool Room
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    Half day still listed on their website.
     
  14. mr

    mr Part of the Furniture
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    thanks @mick chopps

    funnily enough im heading to falls tomorrow for 3 days so this jumped out at me

    haha maybe my hotham will be the 'family' mountain now :)
     
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  15. mick chopps

    mick chopps Pool Room
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    I'm talking genuine bunnies, not those that can already ski a bit. As I clearly stated in the last sentence that for more capable skiers the 2hr lessons might be a better option.
     
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  16. mick chopps

    mick chopps Pool Room
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    Once the kids can ski a bit I reckon it's a no brainer irrespective of the lesson situation.
     
  17. mr

    mr Part of the Furniture
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    fairynuf!
     
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  18. mr

    mr Part of the Furniture
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    for the newbies though, i just think of when my kids were 4, 5 or 6, face down in the snow losing it at 12.30-1pm at the end of the 5hrs it has taken since leaving the lodge, falling off the glycemic cliff, busting for a piss, needing proper food and a break. We always have gone back to the lodge for lunch, cook up those leftover bolognaise toasties, take a real break. it can be pretty intense the lesson stuff, particularly on those brutal days when the kids are just standing around. But i spose we are one of those families that has rarely or minimally used childcare, and certainly not so mum and dad can goof off, so maybe showing my bias here.
     
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  19. mick chopps

    mick chopps Pool Room
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    Half day still available for kids club up to 6 years of age.
     
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  20. mr

    mr Part of the Furniture
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    thats good at least!
     
  21. skull

    skull One of Us

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    Not Falls, but I do that.

    You pick up at 1530.

    Last year I would collect my young lad and then we would be doing laps of front valley till the lifts closed and on Saturday's we would then have dinner at Jax's or Aldo's then back out for night skiing till he had enough. Which was usually one the lifts stopped.

    This year they are in a seasonal program at Thredbo. Which is every Sunday. So the plan is Saturdays, ride with kids in morning. Wife will then take them and remain at friday flats and I will go off for the afternoon. Sunday drop off at program
     
  22. mick chopps

    mick chopps Pool Room
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    It is a very strange decision @mr
    Clearly focusing their kids ski school resources at genuine noobs who would benefit from the full day lessons rather than intermediate skiers who want to improve technique etc.
     
  23. mr

    mr Part of the Furniture
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    i guess @mick chopps we have had theories before that its the noobs that the resorts make their $ off......so this kinda supports that theory
     
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  24. Pink

    Pink One of Us

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    Crazy. Hotham still offers half day kids lessons but it’s $153 half day versus $173 full day. $20 discount for half day because lunch isn’t provided.

    EDIT: price includes lifts. There doesn’t seem to be a no lifts price listed. Am I missing something?
     
  25. mick chopps

    mick chopps Pool Room
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    yep.
     
  26. CarveMan

    CarveMan Pool Room
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    Even more than this, in this era of cheap season passes you will see resorts recovering more from guests on ancillaries.
     
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  27. Born2ski

    Born2ski Part of the Furniture

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    I'm with you on this one, I go on holidays to ski with my kids, not put them in childcare for the whole time.

    My kids are 12 and 8 yrs old and have done maybe one full day of ski school, the rest has either been half day or mostly 2hr sessions. Can't have hurt their progression too much since last year their instructor was taking them down chopped powder black runs through the trees at Red Mountain in Canada, and this year their instructor in Japan said they could handle anything across the whole mountain. Sounds like it's just another money grab by the resort to me.
     
  28. mick chopps

    mick chopps Pool Room
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    sounds like they might be in the minority of ski school users in Aus, thus the resort has elected to remove lessons used by this group. I imagine the uptake of lessons from advanced skiers of that age might be pretty low? I'm not advocating either way for their decision, but I can see why they would think it was a good idea. Ultimately the punters will be the ones who decide.
     
  29. Tanuki

    Tanuki A Local
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    Me too, we were considering falls for a few days this winter and would've put our 4yr old in half day. I wonder if Hotham is doing the same thing.
     
  30. mick chopps

    mick chopps Pool Room
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    They still do half days for ages 3-6.
     
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  31. Karicta

    Karicta A Local
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    Phew
     
  32. absentskier

    absentskier Old n' Crusty
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    It's an issue at lots of ski schools the world over. Where I ski overseas there is only a full day option, which my kids have always despised. They're on holiday with mum and dad and, funnily enough, actually want to ski with us. Works well for some and not for others.
     
  33. Born2ski

    Born2ski Part of the Furniture

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    Depends where you ski, I've seen young kids better than mine ripping up the whole mountain.

    My kids have been in many different ski schools around the world, and let's be honest a number of them aren't ski SCHOOLS, they are child care facilities with very little focus on improving kids skiing technique.

    The best ski school I encountered was in Whitefish Montana, where at the age of 5 my daughter was learning short radius turns, skiing all the blue runs on the mountain and starting to touch easy blacks. She made a HUGE leap in her skiing ability that year so I wanted to have a chat with her instructor to see why this ski school was different. He told me the school focused on getting the kids up to a level where they could ski anywhere on the mountain with their parents. It wasn't about keeping them coming back for more and more lessons, it wasn't about "lets just play around and have lots of fun", they actually wanted all the kids to be able to ski with their parents. Different philosophy, different results.
     
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  34. FatBoyDave

    FatBoyDave One of Us
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    Hotham has only done half day and full day for kids for a few years now.
     
  35. Hully

    Hully One of Us

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    I think this is as much a logistics related change which has come about over recent years as the kids in the full day 7+yo programs have been having lunch at various venues around the mountain. The groups do not return to the ski school area routinely at noon so dropping off kids on morning only lessons is problematic.... rightly or wrongly.
    They do still offer lesson only and half day with lunch for snow club as they all return fur lunch at ski school at noon.

    This is an observation of mine not an opinion either way.
     
  36. mr

    mr Part of the Furniture
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    yeah at hotham if you tick the box the 1/2 day kids can get on the bus on their own from central to big d, and can get back to the lodge on their own, something ive always liked as it builds their independence.....at falls having kids ski wombats on their own may be a logistic / care issue
     
  37. Drt

    Drt First Runs

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    I just don't see logistically what the problem is to offer a 2-hour lesson. (Note: last year this was cut back to 1.5 hour lesson). The 2 hour lesson booking and scanning infrastructure is already in place!

    My kids have their Falls Creek ski lesson card which shows exactly what level and achievements they are up to from last lesson, at 1.15pm we walk over to the exact area fenced off at Cloud 9 for their level, see the instructor taking that level, and sign them in. The kids then scan their ski pass to get out of the lesson area (this proves they have paid for the lesson), and they are off! I then return at 2.45pm and pick them up. The instructor updates their card if need be with their new skills and tells me how they went.

    This works brilliantly for us. We ski as a family together in the morning. We have lunch together. Then my wife and I ski together on harder runs for 1.5 hours whilst the kids are having their lesson, before picking the kids up. They are subsequently improved. We do a couple more runs together before eating donuts at the bottom of Wombats ramble.

    We ski 3-4 weekends per year (from Melbourne), pretty much one weekend per month during the season, so a whole day in ski school sort of ruins the weekend.
     
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  38. CarveMan

    CarveMan Pool Room
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    When I taught at Buller it was Full Day and AM/PM half days.

    The PM half days were a bit of a shit product but you can understand families not being able to get going in the morning.

    AM half day worked well, they got plenty of instruction and got to ski with parents in the arvo.

    In Vail it was full days but plenty of parents arranged to meet you at lunch to take their kids out.
     
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  39. Drt

    Drt First Runs

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    We would buy the kids lesson component on the morning of the day, and usually the morning 2-hour time slots were always full, so we ended up going with the afternoon session.
    Coming from Mt Beauty meant we didn't get on mountain to the ticket box until about 9am.
     
  40. Apresski

    Apresski Pool Room
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    When the kids were older, we would frequently get a private 2 hour lesson and combine with 2 other kids. They went ahead by leaps and bounds with those lessons, going to places ski school often didn't venture.
     
  41. Pink

    Pink One of Us

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    Is there a staff retention factor in the decision to offer only full day lessons? Better able to provide full time employment to quality instructors. I don’t like the decision, and my automatic jaded suspicion is that it’s just some poorly thought out, short term focused, revenue raising exercise. But maybe the decision was based on quality. Maybe.
     
  42. mr

    mr Part of the Furniture
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    dude...... ill be there at 9am tomorrow from Melbourne with 3 kids :)

    ok maybe 10.....
     
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  43. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend
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    St Moritz?
     
  44. skull

    skull One of Us

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    Not yet.

    In the Thredbo run program, little rippers I think.

    Once they’re a bit better I think st moritz will be the plan
     
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  45. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend
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    I really rate it.
    Wouldn't panic too much on ability either.
     
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  46. Corduroyqueen

    Corduroyqueen Hard Yards

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    Any South Aussies here in this thread? You can get a short child's lesson at 8.30am if you are part of SA Interschools in the second week of the SA school holidays. Go to www.sainterschools.com.au
     
  47. KL.

    KL. One of Us

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    that doesn't make any sense