This winter is poised to be unprecedented, there will be new rules and regulations, the likes we’ve never had to think about in the ski industry; capacity limits, required reservations for tickets and indoor facility access, and the requirement of appropriate social distancing at ski resorts. While skiing itself is outside and easy to stay separated, operators will need to think carefully about how to put procedures in place to keep guests safe in ticket lines, at the lodge, during lunch time, etc. Recently, our team did a brainstorm internally and with partners to come up with different ways to use some of our new functionality to provide social distancing and crowd control measures.
- Staggered arrival times for ticket pick-up – This might be the most obvious use for time slots, but spreading out arrival time at your resort is a logical way to reduce congestion in parking areas as well asat the ticket-windows. I know, you’re probably thinking it’s going to be impossible to enforce pick-up times on-site, but businesses of all kinds are implementing new systems and processes to accommodate operations during COVID, and this is your chance to do so as well. By the time winter comes, customers will have seen and experienced all sorts of systems in place to reduce congestion and control visitation, so they shouldn’t be too surprised.
- Designated lunch time at the lodge – How to reduce crowding during lunch breaks is a topic that has come up in multiple conversations with our partners. Using our time slot functionality, you can offer a product that is a lunch reservation at a specific-time slot, with the price of the reservation serving as a lunch voucher. For example, you could offer $10 lunch reservations in set time increments, such as 10:30am, 11am, 11:30am, etc. and limit the number of reservations per slot. If the price of the lunch voucher is $10, the skier can use that $10 credit towards their meal.
- Rental equipment pick-up times – We know the rental shop can be a busy place, which is why you’d want to use the Liftopia add-on functionality to designate pick-up times for tickets that include rental equipment. Add-on functionality allows customers to add-on a product “extra” (in this case, select a pick-up time) to a product they’ve already selected.
- Season pass reservations – We’ve talked about this one before, but requiring your season pass holders to book a specific date for a guaranteed visit is a great way to manage daily capacity. You can use our $0 reservation functionality in combination with our daily capacity system to ensure that your day ticket visits + season passholder visits don’t exceed your daily capacity limits. This is seamless and handsfree with Liftopia.
- Apres-ski reservations – A beer after a day of skiing is pretty essential if you ask most, so you’ll want to make sure you have a system in place to manage capacity at the watering hole. We recommend requiring reservations for entry into your bar, in compliance with local regulations for maximum capacity. You can use our $0 reservation tool to offer free reservations, or our time slot tool to offer distinct reservation times such as 3-4pm, 4:30-5:30pm, with time to clear out the bar in-between.
We know there will be logistical and operational details to figure out with any of these suggestions, and we’d love to hear what your plans are. What other ideas do you have? Let us know in the comments.