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Ski Equipment: Should I Buy or Rent Skis?

Is it better to buy skis or rent? If you’re a beginner to skiing or don’t practice the sport very often, you might find yourself wondering whether to rent or buy. What is the cost of renting ski equipment? Does my skill level matter? Is buying my own set a worthwhile investment?

We will be going over the pros and cons of renting skis in order to answer these questions. Read on to find out more…


The pros of renting skis

1. It’s a better choice for beginners

If it’s your first time hitting the slopes, renting your ski equipment is a far better option compared with buying.

Committing to buying ski equipment straight away is a huge investment, and it’s important to try before you buy!

What’s more, there is a big difference in kit requirements between beginner, intermediate and advanced skiers. This means that, if you are a beginner and buy your ski equipment straight away, you’ll probably need to update it further down the line. Especially for kids’ equipment that they outgrow quickly!

2. It’s more convenient when flying

If you’re taking the plane to the French Alps, you’ll save a lot by renting skis in terms of added luggage. Considering ski clothing is bulky and usually requires hold luggage, adding a sports bag to that can increase your overall travel costs significantly.

In fact, the cost of paying to take skis on the plane can range from €72-€95 – which can easily be the same cost as paying for a full week of rental gear!

But even if you’re not flying, renting skis can be a lot less of a hassle for you in general – you don’t even have to get the skis to the resort!

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3. Try out different brands & products

If you choose to rent your ski equipment, you’ll benefit from a huge range of choices when it comes to brands and products. This is great for people who want to try before they buy.

4. Pay less money upfront

Like we’ve said, buying skis costs money, especially for high-end, quality items. Our advice would be to check out our cost guide on renting ski equipment in the French Alps. But a good thing to keep in mind is that renting skis instead of buying them helps you to keep your initial costs down!

The cons of renting skis

1. It costs more in the long run

Renting ski equipment is a good idea if you’re planning short stays once or twice every season; however, the cost will quickly add up if you’re visiting the Alps regularly.

Although buying ski clothing means a higher cost upfront, eventually, it will be worth the investment for keen skiers.

We would recommend you buy pieces for your ski kit individually over time. This includes skis, ski boots, ski poles, a helmet, and so on… You’ll also need to factor in buying the winter gear clothing that keeps you warm and dry on the slopes.

Buying pieces for your kit over time ensures that your investment is worth the while!

2. Personalisation

Everyone’s skiing style differs, along with their preferences of kit. Whether you love speeding down the slopes or prefer making fresh tracks in the powder, your kit should be there to help you have the best time possible.

Once you start taking skiing seriously, or if you decide to visit the mountains regularly, you’ll want to invest in equipment that’s tailored to your needs. So at this point, it’s better to buy instead of rent!

We would recommend you start your own kit by investing in a pair of high-quality ski boots. This is a great way to make your entire kit feel personalised, as the liner inside the boots mould to your foot!

3. Different equipment every time

While rental skis are professionally maintained and available on-site, there are quite a few disadvantages in terms of quality.

Rented equipment can be scratched or damaged, feel uncomfortable to wear, and have a different feel each time.

Although this means you get a good idea of what types of equipment you enjoy, it can also mean you don’t get a good idea of how high-quality ski equipment feels, should you choose to buy your own.

So … should I buy or rent skis?

The answer to this questions depends on many factors including your level, your budget, the size of your group/family, the length of your stay and, of course, how often you plan to ski!

If you are a very frequent skiier who lives close to the slopes and/or plan on hitting the slopes several times in one season, then we would recommend you buy your equipment – chance will be that it will save you some money in the long-run!

If you are a beginner, however, we would recommend you start by renting your equipment so you can try out different brands and sizes before investing.


Still unsure about the question: should I buy or rent skis? Check out our other blogs in the series to help you decide…

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About Author

Hi, I'm Alix and I am a content writer at OVO Network. I am half French, half English, but was born and raised in Hong Kong! In my spare time I love to draw, ride my bike, and play video games.