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The Hidden Family Cost That’s Competing for Skiers’ Annual Dollars

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Call it coincidence, call it something else, I had a strange realization as I bounced between two feeds during the recent NSAA conference.

On the one hand, I was reading a story about Paul Miller, a tech writer who spent a full year without the internet.

As I finished reading one section of his story, I saw this tweet from Dave Belin at the NSAA National Convention:

They may appear unrelated, but I assure they are not.

Dots. Connected.
We often talk about what is keeping people from going skiing in terms of alternative vacations or, as Dave asked, the cost. Now, the question above seems a bit strange to ask. While some products in new niches see increased sales volume when prices are raised, I think it’s likely that if we continue to raise the cost of skiing, unique participants will not be as high if the price hadn’t changed.

But let’s ask this another way. If every $100,000+ income family in the USA had $2,000 fewer dollars to spend each year, would that influence their behavior? If your rent went up $200/mo, would that impact in other areas of your life?

Let’s toggle again back to Paul. Paul freed up a fair amount of time with his lack of connectivity. But there was something else Paul freed up right along with it: the money he used to spend on internet access.

Another Factor
Too often, I’m afraid, we think about the internet as if it were free. While in some ways it is, in many ways it is anything but. I estimated that between my phone and home internet, I’m spending about $1,000 a year to be connected to the web.

For a family of four with a slightly more affluent lifestyle, I would expect that number to be closer to $2,000 or more.

Twenty years ago, this cost did not exist. That extra $2,000 was spent on other things…like skiing. Today, we’re raising prices at the exact same time families spend more on something that is perceived as such a necessity that when someone gives it up, it’s a story that blows up social media.

Raising costs while discretionary income drops? Just something to think about.

About Gregg & SlopeFillers
I've had more first-time visitors lately, so adding a quick "about" section. I started SlopeFillers in 2010 with the simple goal of sharing great resort marketing strategies. Today I run marketing for resort ecommerce and CRM provider Inntopia, my home mountain is the lovely Nordic Valley, and my favorite marketing campaign remains the Ski Utah TV show that sold me on skiing as a kid in the 90s.

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