The Crystal Ski Holidays Blog

What To Pack For Skiing – Skiing Checklist

Winter is here at last: snow is falling across the Northern hemisphere and the slopes are ready to welcome this season’s skiers and boarders. But before you drop everything and run for the hills (totally unprepared), here’s our checklist of ski season must-haves – a combination of advice from our keenest skiers and boarders at Crystal Product and crowd-sourced ideas from Ski Buzz readers and Crystal Ski’s Twitter followers. As a result, this is the most extensive kit checklist ever created. Probably.

Essential ski / snowboard holiday items

  • Ski/snowboard jacket
  • Ski/snowboard trousers (some people call them “salopettes”)
  • Mid-layer (preferably a microfleece)
  • Base Layers (x2 sets minimum): for wicking away the moisture from your body
  • Ski socks (x2 pairs minimum)
  • Ski Gloves
  • Hat (make sure it’s snug and covers your ears)
  • Goggles: crucial when it’s snowing
  • Sun cream (SPF 25 minimum)
  • Lip balm
  • Your passport
  • Travel Insurance (with winter sports cover)
  • Paperwork: travel insurance, tickets etc.
  • Cash/credit card: for the inevitable apres ski.
  • European Health Insurance Card (EHIC): get State healthcare at a reduced cost or sometimes for free within the European Economic Area (EEA)
  • Continental travel adaptor plug

Nice-to-have items


  • Small rucksack: for daytime snacks, water and any other bits you need whilst on the mountain
  • Sunglasses
  • Neck warmer/scarf/snood/bandana
  • Helmet
  • Water bottle
  • Cheap watch: to make sure you don’t miss the last lift or smash up your Rolex
  • Range of lenses for your ski goggles: so you can see clearly in all conditions

Apres ski

  • Snowboots/waterproof boots: Teva do some lightweight boots that pack down next to nothing
  • Waterproof mascara (for the ladies)
  • Casual/comfy attire for the evenings (jeans will do)


  • Camera: to make your friends jealous on Facebook when you get home
  • MP3 player
  • Smartphone: to contact your rep with questions, read your online info-pack and use the ski apps
  • Phone charger
  • Waterproof phone case (to protect your precious minicomputer from condensation/the snow)
  • Smartphone ski apps: to impress your friends by checking the snow forecast, viewing the resort map and tracking your skiing all day
  • UK Extension Socket: to minimise squabbles over the adaptor plug


  • Chocolate bars: useful energy boosters to fill the gap between lunch & dinner
  • Energy drinks/vitamin tablets/rehydration salts: to get you going in the morning
  • Ibuprofen: great for both hangovers and bruises you may pick up on the slopes
  • Deep Heat / Tiger Blam: to soothe those aching muscles
  • First Aid kit – for those little bumps and scrapes


  • Body Armour base layer: you’ll know if you need it
  • Wrist guards: if you want
  • Knee pads: particularly if you’re going snowboarding

Other useful items

  • Swimming costume: especially if you have a pool in your hotel/chalet
  • Penknife: useful for everything, but principally for the corkscrew (remember to pack this in your hold luggage though)
  • Snowboard /ski lock
  • Whistle and torch: for the more adventurous among us
  • Transceiver, probe and shovel: if you’re going off piste
  • Hip flask: just in case

Luxury items

  • Inner Gloves + balaclava: if you feel the cold or it gets really baltic out there
  • Camelback: to keep hydrated
  • Walkie-talkies: stay in touch with your friends / family / teammates on the slopes
  • Your own boots: for a more comfortable fit
  • Your own skis/snowboard
  • Hand / foot warmers
  • GoPro helmet camera: just to prove how good you really are
  • Ski goggles with a Recon MOD heads-up display: monitor your speed, location and altitude, play music and see incoming calls. Feeling like Robocop is an extra bonus feature.
  • Touch-screen capable gloves: save your fingers from the cold whilst texting your mates or checking your speed
  • Your favourite teabags: to cement the British stereotype

Outrageous Items

If you’re going on a winter sports holiday where a mankini is required, you can pretty much guarantee all of these other items are, by default, also essential packing.

  • Ski beard
  • “Crazy ski hat” generally sported only by skiers and boarders from the UK
  • Fluorescent shell suit
  • Solar powered ski jacket
  • Animal themed fancy dress
  • Mankini
  • A yellow, James Bond-style, onesie
  • Hawaiian shirt

So there you go. (Probably) everything you could ever need for a ski/snowboard trip this season.

Are you a family and need a specific list just for you? Then don’t worry because we’ve got this handy guide for what to pack for a family ski trip.

Any other ideas? Tell us what’s on your checklist over on Twitter or Instagram

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