Skiing is a lot like marmite; not just because we either love it or hate it, but also because these days, it’s incredibly expensive.
“It’s so expensive… I just can’t afford it” is a refrain often muttered by those pining for a slice of Alpine bliss. A lot of the time, people are simply unable to go skiing purely based on their financial situation. There is no denying it, skiing can be a huge financial ask: skis, ski boots, clothes, equipment… It all stacks up to thin your wallet. But with the growth of online platforms, could the sharing economy begin to enable more of us to experience the frenzy of the slopes?
Renting your skis and ski boots is increasingly popular. A large majority of skiing newbies opt for renting their equipment from ski shops, whilst they consider whether skiing is for them, rather than making the (scary) leap of buying their own gear. Renting is a particularly attractive option for those who only go skiing once a year.
Rent out your skis just 2.56 times to make them pay for themselves.
Clothing in particular can be very stressful; there’s a lot of it and it ain’t cheap. As a kid, I always found myself asking my parents for a new ski jacket or some new trousers every year because the ones they had bought for me last christmas had become too small and were showing off my curves a little too much. A comprehensive outfit for high quality ski stuff can cost £1000+, so spending that every year does seem a little bit ridiculous. Why not rent your clothes just as you would you skis or ski boots. Certainly, as far as kids or once-a-year skiers, it seems like a no-brainer.
Renting your ski gear can save you money, and lots of it – but what is in it for the the lender? The clever folks in the Fat Lama research lab (i’m afraid to say i’m not one of them) have analysed category-specific data to estimate how many times you’d have to rent out different items to make back your money. In this case, we’re talking ski stuff (how did you guess?) And the results suggest that peer-to-peer renting could indeed make you a substantial amount of additional income, easing your woes when it comes to checking the post-Christmas bank balance.
As an example, assuming a two-day rental period, you would only have to rent out your boots or your ski jacket 2.23 times in order for them to ‘pay for itself’. You could rent those lovely new pair of salopettes (trousers) you got for Christmas just 2.16 times in the Easter months and make your money back. Your helmet could pay for itself after a couple of rentals, as could your googles. And although a lot of people decide to rent their skis and poles from ski shops, peer-to-peer renting could provide a much cheaper avenue for borrowers and an even greater one for lenders. According to our research you could rent out your skis just over 2.5 times and make your money back. The reason we found this particularly valuable is because people are often reluctant to spend big on ‘those’ pair of skies, but if they thought they could rent them out a few times and make their money back on them, they would be less hesitant.
So why not give it a try and see where renting takes you? Beat the queues and get 5-star gear at 1-star prices.