The most expensive lift passes in Europe – 2021 update

The costs of skiing seem to increase every year. One cost that almost never goes down is the cost of a daily or weekly ski lift pass.

One way to keep the cost of a ski pass down is to check the increasing number of ski resorts giving substantial reductions on online purchases in advance.

Ski Resorts Network takes a look at the most expensive lift passes at the cash desk in each of the main European countries:

Most expensive lift pass in Austria

Kitzbühel Ski Area
Most expensive day lift pass in Austria

The most expensive daily ski pass in Austria is €64. That’s the cost of a high season day ticket to the glacier ski resort of Sölden in the Austrian province of the Tyrol.

The most expensive six-day lift pass is in the same valley, where an Ötztal adult pass (covers Sölden and Obergurgl) in high season will cost €354.

Both the one-day and six-day versions offer substantial reductions the earlier they are purchased…

Most expensive lift pass in France

Skiing in Tignes
The Espace Killy – most expensive lift pass in France

Some of the French ski resort ski pass prices have added an extra wrinkle on top of the reductions for online bookings in advance. The Les Arcs Classic ski pass, for example, is the traditional ski pass limited to that area (without the connected La Plagne area lifts). However the Les Arcs Essential ski pass includes the Paradiski connection to La Plagne and the use of priority lines at ski lifts.

When it comes to lift passes in France, it is really no surprise that what is arguably the top ski area has the top prices. The local Val d’Isère pass clocks in at €57 for a day pass and is joined at that price level by the basic La Plagne and Les Arcs day passes. Local passes are often not available for more than one or two days and here the Espace Killy connecting Val d’Isère and Tignes comes out on top with a cool €324 for six days.

Most expensive lift pass in Switzerland

Flims-Laax-Falera ski area
Skiing above Flims

Switzerland comes with a big asterisk as the major ski resorts are moving towards ‘dynamic pricing’ (the lift ticket price varies with demand). So, for example, a day ticket in a resort such as Zermatt can vary from 79CHF depending on the season and the number of passes already sold on any given day (with reductions for early online booking and guests staying in Zermatt).

With this in mind the skier will find it almost impossible a) to get an idea of the cost for a week’s ski pass at different periods and b) to compare prices between ski resorts.

Most expensive lift pass in Italy

Skiing on the Seiseralm in Italy
The Seiseralm ski area

The ski areas around the Dolomites have tended to have the more expensive ski passes in Italy. However, it is one of the smaller (but very scenic) ski areas in the Dolomiti region that tops the list. For some reason, the Seiseralm ski ticket can only be bought combined with the Val Gardena ticket which includes better-known resorts such as Selva and Santa Cristina. This results in a daily lift pass price of €62 and a six-day high season adult ski pass price of €315.

Mind you, Europeans have little to complain about when it comes to ski pass prices if they cast their eyes across the Atlantic. In Vail this winter a day ticket bought at the lift pass office window will cost $229 in high season.

Even going through Epic (a multi-resort ski ticket organisation aimed mainly at season ticket purchases), the Epic day pass will cost $91 for a single day…