It’s that wonderful time of the year when people fly to the mountains, strap on their skis, and take to the slopes! Things are a little different this year, but with any luck, you may still be able to find some snow this winter.
Here are some popular resorts and whether they are keeping the slopes open this year!
The French Alps
France has opened its ski resorts but has shut its ski lifts, making it more challenging for people to ski. Still, you might be able to find your way around some resorts with the right tools, like this Serre Chevalier ski map.President Emmanuel Macron has said that ski lifts may be able to open on the 7th of January, however. Resorts in Italy and Austria have also got restrictions on their ski lifts, but they may also open these next month.
One of the exceptions is the slopes in Switzerland. The Swiss are keeping their lifts open – although they will be socially distanced and measures will be in place – and will be keeping their bars and restaurants active for the ski season in 4 Vallees. Switzerland is not an EU state, so any rules that the EU imposes do not have to be abided by Switzerland.
Bulgaria is in the EU but out of the Schengen Area and is located nearly 2000 kilometres from the Alps in western Europe. Bulgaria’s slopes are planning to open at some point this year, but they have not at the time of writing and are “in no hurry to”. The government has stated that they do not want to put people out of work during one of the peak tourist seasons and that they believe that skiing is good for people’s health; however, they are currently in the middle of a lockdown and will likely face further restrictions on hospitality.
The Coronavirus rate is soaring in Sweden, a country famous for its lack of lockdown. The government are slowly opening up ski slopes, despite the worries about the infection rate. EU and EEA travellers do not currently need to quarantine if travelling to Sweden.
Finland is doing better in the pandemic than neighbouring Sweden, and they are also looking at gradually opening up their ski slopes. However, travel to Finland currently has a lot more restrictions.
Then there’s the skiing over the pond. The USA has some of the world’s best slopes, although entry to the country is currently closed for EU citizens. One way around this is to spend at least 2 weeks in another country first, and then travel to the USA. For people who have a lot of time to take off, this could be an option!