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Work keeps I-70 skiers from staying Sunday night, but what if work was the reason they stayed?

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More than once I’ve had the same conversation with resort lodging people along the I-70 corridor. In a nutshell, their frustration goes something like this.

“Everyone hates I-70 traffic and it’s only getting worse. But try as we might to get them to stay over Sunday night, nothing seems to work. Work beckons on Monday morning, and unless they wake up at 5:00am, they can’t make it down to Denver in time.”

As I combed through OpenSnow‘s survey responses the other day, a big, overarching trend that came through supported one piece of this sticking point: how bad I-70 traffic is.

Over and over again, hundreds and hundreds people not only complained about it, but said that is was “getting worse and worse each year” and they were “this close” to not getting a season pass anymore or driving all the way to Summit/Eagle county because of it.

The Headline
But as I think about this problem I can’t help but wonder if there’s a solution here that intersects with another trends I’m seeing.

Let’s do it this way. Let’s first expand this post’s headline a bit.

“If I’m skiing Sunday, why would I pay to book a room I have to check out of at 5:00 just to get to work on Monday?”

So let’s take that and with a couple small tweaks reshape it into the idea I’ve been seeing.

“If I’m skiing Sunday, would I pay to book a room if I could work from there on Monday?”

What this comes on the heels of is a steady flow of coverage on something more and more companies are experimenting with: weekly (or regular) “work from home” days.

Even more, employees are starting to use these days as a bargaining chip.

“Yeah I’ll work late this week to get that done, but how about I start getting a day a week i can work from home?”

In other words, what if some of your skiers didn’t have to be back in Denver on Monday for work? What if they could work from your resort? And what if you wrapped that right into a nice little package that made Monday the perfect day to do that?

De Exemplu
For example, that package could look something like this for passholders:

  • One night’s lodging in mountain-facing room w/ desk
  • Late 6pm checkout
  • Free breakfast
  • Free parking at the hotel starting Sunday morning.
  • Free high-speed WI-FI upgrade

Under the assumption that the room would be vacant anyway and nothing else seems to work, it would appear you have some wiggle room for experimenting. Perhaps pairing this with some best practices for requesting work from home days and you might have an idea that can slowly grow into something more sustainable.

If employers are more and more willing, if rooms have been sitting empty anyway, and if skiers hate the traffic? Maybe that’s worth a try.

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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