Whistler > Lift Tickets & Passes

Whistler Lift Tickets

Your Options, And How To Get The Biggest Discount

You would think that purchasing Whistler lift tickets would be a pretty straight forward procedure. You show up in Whistler, plop down your credit card, and up the mountain you go!

And you know what? It can be that straight forward. Except that if you go about it that way, chances are you will end up paying top dollar for your skiing or snowboarding. And nobody wants that, right... right?

That's what I thought.

Now that we're on the same page, let's take a look at your lift ticket options for Whistler Blackcomb, and more importantly, how to save yourself some money that can be better spent elsewhere. Like perhaps...

treating your Mom to a little après-ski at the Garibaldi Lift Co. in Whistler Village...

Outside the Garibaldi Lift Company Whistler Village Canada Apres ski at the GLC Whistler BC Canada

or maybe getting an extra day on both Whistler and Blackcomb Mountains (which is a breeze with the new Peak 2 Peak Gondola).

Peak 2 Peak Gondola looking towards Whistler Mountain
The Peak 2 Peak Gondola looking
towards Whistler Mountain


The #1 Rule When Purchasing Whistler Lift Tickets

Make sure that you buy your Whistler lift tickets before you arrive at the resort.

No matter what type of Whistler Blackcomb lift pass you purchase (and no matter who you purchase it from), in order to make sure that you get a good price (ie. the biggest discount) you must follow the above advice. You see, once you are standing at the ticket window in Whistler Village it's usually too late. They've "got you" so to speak. You either pay full price (or very near full price) or you don't get up the mountains!

Whistler Village ticket window and mountain
There are lots of ticket
options for getting from
here (Skier's Plaza, Whistler Village)...

Dad at top of Flute Bowl, Symphony Express
to here, (the top of the
Symphony Express Chairlift,
Whistler Mountain). The trick
is to know which ticket to
buy and where to find the best deal.

So does buying ahead of time guarantee that you will purchase the "perfect" type of Whistler lift pass, from the "perfect" place in order to optimize your savings?

Well, not necessarily.

For example, if you do purchase your Whistler lift tickets ahead of time, but from the wrong source, you may not receive the biggest discount.

What's that? You want to know how you can find the "perfect Whistler ski lift ticket" that will save you and your family/friends the most money next time you visit?

No problem.

With single day lift tickets at Whistler now priced at $114.24 (the 2012/2013 price including taxes), taking a few extra minutes to find that perfect ticket is worth it.

Hey, every little bit helps right?

Below you will find a summary of just about every way you can purchase a ticket to get up Whistler and Blackcomb Mountains. And depending on a number of factors, including your age, when you are arriving, where you live, whether you are taking ski or snowboard lessons, whether you are a full-time student, how many days you will be skiing/riding, among others, one of the options below will be your best bet.

BUT...

Even with all of your options laid out before you it can still be a daunting task to find the "perfect Whistler Blackcomb lift ticket" that we've been talking about. With so many choices and variables involved it can be a bit overwhelming.

The answer?

The "Whistler Blackcomb Lift Ticket Wizard"

Whistler Blackcomb Lift Ticket "Wizard"

Whistler Ticket Wizard chairlift Blackcomb Wizard Chairlift, Blackcomb Mountain

Simply "jump on" the wizard, answer a few questions, and you'll be on your way to finding the perfect ticketing option for you and your friends/family.

Truth be known I developed this little "ticket wizard" (named after the Wizard Chairlift located at the base of Blackcomb Mountain) as a time saver for myself. You see, as I mentioned above, there are many variables (age, place of residence, time of season, number of ski days etc., etc.) that go into deciding which lift ticket or pass is the best for someone looking to get the biggest discount. And because of this, the scenarios are endless!

For example, let's say you are an adult (but not a senior) coming from California with your family (spouse and 2 kids, ages 10 and 15) and you are planning on skiing 5 days over Christmas. The Whistler lift tickets that I would recommend for you and your family will be different than those I would recommend for two seniors from Toronto, visiting Whistler in mid-April who are planning on skiing for only 2 days.

Loading the Blackcomb Gondola, Whistler Village Boarding the Excalibur Gondola in Whistler Village

So rather than going through scenario after scenario to try and cover all of the bases for you, I developed a series of questions, and plugged them into my Whistler Lift Ticket Wizard. Now all you, or anyone else has to do is walk through the questions one by one and voilà, 99 times out of 100 you will end up with the "perfect" ski lift ticket for Whistler Blackcomb!

So, what are you waiting for? Here comes the next chair, or is that a gondola?

Come on, jump on!

Still with me?

Alright then.

Let's walk through your options for purchasing Whistler lift tickets and try and decide which one works for you. As we go through each option I'll give you another chance to jump on the ticket wizard and see if that particular option is truly your best bet.

Buying Your Whistler Lift Tickets At The Resort

If you do decide to ignore my #1 rule (buying before you arrive), and wait until you get to Whistler resort before buying your lift tickets, prepare yourself for the possibility that you might have to pay full price, or close to it, for your skiing and snowboarding.


Whistler Blackcomb lift ticket prices 2008-2009 Whistler Blackcomb lift ticket window circa January 2013

As you can see from the photo above, the only way you can save a little bit of money if you wait and buy your lift tickets at the resort is to go with a multi-day lift ticket. And even then you will only save yourself $4 per day. Believe me, there are better deals to be had!

Pre-Purchasing Multi-Day Whistler Lift Tickets

Unlike purchasing multi-day tickets when you arrive in Whistler, pre-purchasing those same tickets before you arrive can save you significant money in some situations.

Multi-day tickets can be purchased directly from the resort or in many instances, through your accommodation provider. Just make sure that you purchase them at least 3 days in advance of arriving in Whistler BC or you will be out of luck.

One last thing before we get to the pricing. Even though you do save on pre-purchased multi-day tickets, there still might be better options available. For example a Whistler Edge Card or 7-Eleven Whistler Lift Tickets might be less expensive. See below for more information on these options.

Alright, click here to see what the latest full price Whistler Blackcomb lift ticket costs are (opens a new window) or keep reading to see your other options.

Whistler Blackcomb Edge Cards

Are you a resident of Canada or Washington State? If you are then this is likely your best option when it comes to purchasing Whistler lift tickets. (Unfortunately, if you are not a resident of either Canada or Washington State you can't take advantage of this offer. And just in case you are wondering, you must provide proof of residency and photo ID when you pick up your card.)

The Whistler Blackcomb Edge Card comes preloaded with 1, 3, 5 or 10 days of lift access, and can save you as much as 45% per day compared to a full price one day lift ticket. Edge Cards also provide a discounted rate once the initial days are used up and are priced separately for Adults, Seniors & Youths, and Children.

In addition to the discount you receive on lift tickets, there are also a host of other perks and discounts that are available to Edge Card holders, including Whistler accommodation deals and retail store discounts.

My collection of Whistler Blackcomb Edge Cards and Express Cards My collection of Whistler Blackcomb Edge Cards and Express Cards dating back to 1994

If you qualify, the Edge Card might just be your best bet for saving money. My wife and I have been Edge Card holders for over seventeen years now, even going back to the days when they were called "Express Cards" (see the arrow in the picture above). What can I say. We are sold on the value.

Do you have to pre-purchase an Edge Card before you arrive in Whistler in order to receive a discount?

Yes and no.

If you are purchasing a 1-Day Edge Card, in order to receive a $14 discount you must pre-purchase your pass online at least 48 hours prior to arriving.

If you are planning on purchasing a 3 or 5-Day Edge Card, it is not necessary to pre-purchase these passes as there is no discount offered during the season. However, by pre-purchasing an Edge Card for next ski season before the end of the present year's season (are you following me?) you can receive a significant discount. And on top of that you get a free ski day next season, and you can ski the rest of the current season for just $79. (Find out how to use this Whistler Edge Card perk to ski the entire length of your next Whistler vacation for only $79.)

10-Day Edge Cards must be pre-purchased. In fact the only way to get a 10-Day card is to purchase it before the ski season even starts.

Click here for complete details on Whistler Blackcomb Edge Cards.

or

Try out the Whistler Lift Tickets Wizard to see if an Edge Card is your best bet.

Purchase Your Tickets At A 7-Eleven Store In Vancouver Or Squamish*

One of the best (and easiest) ways to save money on Whistler lift tickets is to stop in to a 7-Eleven convenience store in either Vancouver or Squamish (which is located halfway between Vancouver and Whistler) and purchase your lift tickets there. You will save yourself about 12-13% on single day lift tickets by going this route.


7-Eleven discount Whistler lift ticket sign, Squamish BC 7-11 Fast Tracks Lift Ticket for Whistler Blackcomb
Stop in at any Greater Vancouver
or Squamish (where the above
sign is located) 7-Eleven store,
pick up your discounted Whistler Blackcomb
ski lift tickets...

then head straight to the lifts when you arrive in Whistler.

Boys in front of chairlift on a sunny day in Whistler BC Canada The boys getting ready to load the Wizard Chairlift at the base of
Blackcomb Mountain on a sunny day in Whistler, British Columbia

*A word of warning about 7-Eleven ski lift tickets (actually two words)

First, if you wait until you get to Squamish there is a remote chance that the two 7-Eleven stores there will be sold out of ski lift tickets. It's unlikely, but I have heard of this happening before. To be on the safe side, purchase your Whistler lift tickets at one of the 7-Elevens in the Greater Vancouver area.

Second, although there is a 7-Eleven located right in Whistler, for obvious reasons they do not sell discounted Whistler Blackcomb lift tickets. And neither does the 7-11 store located at Vancouver International Airport.

Find more info on 7-11 Whistler ski lift tickets, including pricing, options and store locations here.

Is There An Even BETTER Deal Than 7-11 Whistler Lift Tickets?

As a matter of fact, yes. If you are looking for an even better deal on single day Whistler lift tickets than Seven Eleven offers, and you are willing to go a little bit out of your way, there is another option.

These single day, adult Whistler Blackcomb lift tickets (no children's tickets or senior/youth tickets are available) are sold by the Student's Union of a local university. The tickets are about $25 cheaper than the resort price and about $11 cheaper than 7-11 tickets (including taxes). Find out more about these cheap lift tickets for Whistler here. (this link opens a new window)

Children 12 And Under

Thomas at Blackcomb Mountain ticket window Our 4 year old son getting his lift ticket
at the Blackcomb Base II ticket window

With two boys in the "12 and under" category, I speak from experience when it comes to buying Whistler lift tickets for children. Let's start with the little ones first.

Tots (6 years and under)

Children 6 years of age and under ski and ride for free with an adult. But even though they get up the mountains for free, they still need a valid lift ticket. Simply bring your child to any ticket window or Guest Relations office in Whistler in order to pick up their free ticket. Multi-day tickets are also available which saves you the hassle of going to the ticket window each morning.

Children 9 or 10 Years Old

If you live in Western Canada and your child is 9 or 10 years old (grade 4 or 5), they qualify for a Grade 4 & 5 Snowpass from Ski Canada. The Snowpass costs about $22 and is good for 3 days of skiing at Whistler Blackcomb, as well as many other Canadian Ski Resorts.

There are a couple of stipulations however. One is that this is a single time offer. If the child gets a Snowpass when they are 9, they cannot apply again when they are 10. Second, the child must be accompanied by a paying adult in order to use the pass at Whistler Blackcomb.

But what if your child needs more than 3 days worth of Whistler lift tickets? Well, you could of course purchase single day tickets at the window for $48 per day, but a better option would be to purchase some extra tickets from a 7-11 store in Vancouver or Squamish. These tickets are only $43 per day.

Whistler Stay And Ski Packages

If you are planning on booking a hotel for your stay in Whistler, then one option that might save you some money on lift passes is to book a stay and ski package. These packages combine Whistler lodging and lift tickets into one price that is "usually" discounted compared to purchasing both separately.

These package deals are offered by third party travel sites, Whistler resort sites and by the hotel sites themselves. Find out more about these packages and where we tend to find the best deals.

Ski Canada Corporate Lift Tickets

Pre-purchasing your Whistler lift tickets through Ski Canada just might be the best deal going. Why? Let's have a look.

Let's say you are arriving in Whistler BC at the end of February and plan to ski/snowboard 5 days while you are there. For the purposes of this example we'll assume you are an adult between the ages of 19 and 64, and therefore require an "adult" lift ticket. Here is what it would cost you to ski/snowboard per day (before tax) using some of the ticketing options we have already discussed:

1. 5-day pre-purchased lift ticket - $88.40

2. 7-Eleven Whistler tickets - $82.95

3. Purchased from local university - $72.32

4. 5-day Whistler Edge Card (if your qualify) - $71.80

5. Pre-purchased from Ski Canada - $62.50

See what I mean?

Now before you start getting ready to order your "five" lift tickets from Ski Canada, there is a bit of a catch. The tickets are sold in packs of 20. So if your group will be needing at least 20 tickets on your next visit, this might be a very good option for you. Click here to learn more about these discounted whistler ski tickets.

or

Take a ride on the Whistler Ticket Wizard.

Lift Tickets And Snow School Combined

If you or your children are planning on enrolling in the Snow School (Ski or Snowboard) while in Whistler, then there is a very good chance that your best bet is to purchase your lessons and lift tickets together.

For kids (up to 18 years old) and beginner adults (skill level 1-3) purchasing lift tickets as an add on to the lesson price is definitely the way to go, as the savings range from 50% to 75%.

Taking ski lessons in Whistler at Seventh Heaven Ski lessons on Seventh Heaven, Blackcomb Mountain with Whistler Mountain across the valley

Unfortunately, for intermediate/advanced adults (skill level 4-6) the savings are not quite as dramatic.

The best way to figure out what your best option is would be to run through the Whistler Ticket Wizard, determine what you would pay for lift tickets each day if you weren't taking lessons, then compare that to what you would pay for a lift ticket if purchased together with your lesson.

Whistler Season Pass

Cal skiing with Whistler season pass in Harmony Bowl Our 11 year old son in his first season with a Whistler
Season Pass, dropping into Harmony Bowl, Whistler Mtn

One of our family's goals is to be in a position where we are skiing at Whistler Blackcomb so much that it makes sense for us to all have a season pass. We're not quite at that point yet, but we're getting there!

In fact this winter I actually bought my 11 year old son his first Whistler season pass. (It was only a few dollars more than the 10 day edge card so it made a lot of sense.) Based on that I guess you could say that we are 1/4 of the way to our goal. Hey, only 3 more to go!

When will that day come?

Well, once we get up over 15 days per season it starts to actually make sense, so that's our goal. Right now we ski about 10 to 12 days so we're getting close. Here's a closer look at the Whistler season pass including up to date pricing, perks and look at exactly how many days on the mountain you do need for it to make "cents".


The Intrawest Cross Resort Benefit Program

Are you a Passholder, Cardholder or Homeowner at another Intrawest Resort? If so you are eligible for either a $25 or $10 discount on Whistler lift tickets.

For example, if you are a Super Pass or 5X7 Pass holder from Blue Mountain in Ontario, you will qualify for a $25 and $10 discount respectively on Whistler lift tickets.

Here is a complete list of resort passes that qualify:

  • Blue Mountain
  • Snowshoe
  • Steamboat
  • Stratton
  • Tremblant
  • Winter Park
My personal opinion on these savings is as follows. If you can qualify for the $25 discount, it is likely the best deal you will find on ski tickets for Whistler (except for maybe the Ski Canada corporate tickets). If, on the other hand, you only qualify for the $10 discount, you may be better off looking into 7-Eleven tickets or an Edge Card (if you qualify).

Purchase Whistler Lift Tickets With A Bus Ticket

If you are planning on taking a bus from Vancouver to Whistler (that does not originate from the Vancouver Airport) you can purchase 1 or 2 day packages that include both the bus ticket and your lift ticket. Greyhound, for example, offers a 1-day ski package during the regular ski season for $106. Considering that the cost of the round trip bus ride alone is about $50, you are in effect getting the Whistler lift ticket for around $66.

Not a bad price.

To make sure you are getting the best deal on tickets, my suggestion to you is to run through the Whistler Ticket Wizard in order to determine the best price for your situation, then compare that ticket price to what the bus company is charging.

Buy Your Whistler Lift Tickets When You Book Your Accommodation

There are basically two ways that you can purchase your Whistler lift tickets in combination with your accommodation.

The first is to purchase a "Ski & Stay Package" like we discussed above.

The second way is to purchase your lift tickets from your accommodation provider after (or at the same time) that you book your lodging. The prices that you will pay for lift tickets sold by lodging companies is the same as what you would pay if you pre-purchased multi-day tickets from Whistler Blackcomb, so there really isn't any benefit here other than convenience.

Choose Spring Skiing Every Other Year And Save A Bundle On Ski Lift Passes

Spring time in Whistler BC can be a great time to ski and snowboard. The snow is still excellent, the weather is warmer and the skiing can be much cheaper.

Skiing at the end of May in Whistler British Columbia My two boys and me skiing Blackcomb at the end of May

In fact, if you live in Canada or Washington State (and hence qualify for a Whistler Edge Card) with a little creative vacation planning you could ski every other year in Whistler for just $79... for your entire holiday. Here's how.

Timing Your Next Whistler Vacation To Maximize Your Savings

If you are going to be purchasing your Whistler lift tickets directly from Whistler Blackcomb, then the time of the season that you choose to ski will affect the price you pay for tickets. For example, skiing in early December will be considerably cheaper than skiing over the Christmas holidays. With this in mind it is possible to reduce your lift ticket costs (sometimes considerably) by tweaking your arrival date by just a few days here or there. Find out more about how Whistler Blackcomb tickets are priced and how you can use this to your advantage.

Feeling Overwhelmed By The Options For Whistler Lift Tickets?

So you've scanned through all of your lift ticket options and now your head is spinning! Don't worry, as I mentioned above there is a easy way to sort through all of these options and end up with the right tickets for your situation. Just walk through the Whistler Ticket Wizard and in most cases you will end up with the best price and source for your Whistler ski lift tickets. Just click on the picture of the Wizard Chairlift and you are on your way...

Whistler Ticket Wizard chairlift Blackcomb Wizard Chairlift, Blackcomb Mountain



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