Changing School Schedules – Will it affect tourism in Vail, Beaver Creek and the like?

Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Mountain Properties

Vail, Beaver Creek, Bachelor Gulch and neighboring luxury ski resort areas may be impacted with school breaks for Christmas and Easter changing this season.  Why?  Because school breaks are the main driver for family oriented vacations (those where there are school age children in the home).  Family vacations drive business to many industries such as hotels, restaurants, shopping centers, recreation areas and real estate offices.  Active families are a popular demographic in Vail and Beaver Creek (for that matter, in Summit and Eagle counties).

The other major impact from schools starting early each year is that it drains a lot of the seasonal labor pool. A number of states have already been persuaded to go back to the more traditional late August starts. This has become an issue because a lot of the country is moving to year round schools which will certainly have an impact on the tourist business every where.

Vail and Beaver Creek like most ski resorts are getting more and more summer business. The surrounding cities and businesses (Avon, Edwards, Arrowhead) rely on family vacations being spread out across multiple weeks.  Not only does this ‘spread out' effect keep business flow more consistent, but allows the resorts, real estate offices, and others to better manage the ebb and flow of potential customers.  Most likely this is a good time to target Baby Boomers who are not so dependent on children's school vacations when it comes to taking time off from work.

With the changing schedules, more people will be vying for the same slopes, hotels, airplanes, rental cars and restaurants - thus there could be over-crowding in certain areas and a related lack of available resources to meet the excessively high demand.  Some are concerned about the scheduling challenges while others are optimistic.

Vail spokeswoman Jen Brown thinks business in the Vail area will remain strong due to the traditionally good snow conditions and the fact that Vail draws international visitors during the Easter timeframe.

If the school families will not be in Vail, Beaver Creek, Bachelor Gulch and the like this year, there is the possibility of rates being low enough for those who would not ordinarily vacation in a luxury resort like Vail to get a great deal - maybe even the deal of a lifetime.

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