Prices can rise as high as a ski lift once the tourist hordes ascend onto small mountain villages for the winter, but if you are prepared to roll up your sleeves you can ski or snowboard for a lot cheaper by hooking up with these three hosts in Japan, Chile and Italy.
These hosts run two ski lodges in the heart of Niseko Hirafu ski resort. In exchange for 36 hours of volunteer help cleaning, cooking, serving and clearing snow, they’ll provide you with free accommodation, meals and lots of skiing. Minimum stay is four weeks.
Overlooking Lake Llanquihue in the beautiful Vicente Perez Rosales National Park, this mountain refuge is being restored by an enthusiastic, fun loving ‘family’ who share an enjoyment of life and nature. Volunteers can help in the kitchen, with marketing or web design, or on construction projects. Just remember that the seasons are reversed in the southern hemisphere if you want to get in some skiing.
You can reach this Italian hotel perched on Monte Rosa by a combination of gondola and snowmobile. A small, modern, family run hotel, duties for volunteers include guest check-in and assistance, serving meals and cleaning rooms for five hours each day.
Image courtesy Jérémy Lelièvre