It might still be January, and unless you have been in Japan (like we have, more to come on this …) there’s a bit going on at ski areas around the country, specifically at Cardrona/Treble Cone as they look to merge the operations and marketing of the two resorts.
Cardrona Alpine Resort GM, Bridget Legnavsky, has been on the front foot, posting regular videos about progress, and her latest video gives an update on Treble Cones operation for 2020, including lift ticket prices, upgrades and more!
Watch the video below, but here’s the highlights.
A core part of the message was around making Treble Cone sustainable, so that there is a basis for continued investment. We all know TC rocks on powder days, but on other days it’s less busy and the experience, well, let’s just say it can be variable. Cardrona wants Treble Cone to flourish, with more people on the hill every day, not just powder days, to help achieve that sustainability. Cardrona are experienced operators, but clearly they aren’t going in with all guns blazing (aside from the snow guns hopefully!). They say they want to take 2020 to see how TC works, listen to what people want, and then gradually and gently make changes. But they are making some changes for 2020, pricing being a big one, with a significant price reduction from previous years, read on …
We already knew this, but confirmed now is a joint season pass for Treble Cone and Cardona. The earlybird Adult Unlimited pass is valid for the whole season (no blackout dates) for both Cardrona and Treble Cone, at $999. It’s available until March 31, for sale online here. However, the Adult Saver pass for $749 is not valid at Treble Cone, this pass excludes the school holiday periods.
Also available as joint passes between Cardrona and Treble Cone are the Earlybird Multi Passes. A 3 day pass valid for both mountains is $255 ($85 per day) or a 5 day pass for $375 ($75 per day). Given skiing at Treble Cone used to cost you $149 per day (full retail) that’s quite the deal.
Given Cardrona didn’t get approval until early December 2019 you’d expect not much to be happening, but maybe that’s not the case? Bridget announced that their priority was making Treble Cone as reliable as possible. This includes:
As they say integrating the two mountains and the systems, processes and workforce is going to be a lot of work, especially given the timetable. And they know how local the local audience can be, so they have appealed for patience. They know they are not perfect and some things they will get wrong, but they seem genuine in their request for feedback, which they will factor in to the ongoing evolution of the TC product. That has to be good news, especially when you think back to the still recent logo, pricing and website debacles TC has endured.
And there's a couple of interesting nuggets that weren’t included in the video. The Jucy “free skiing” deal is done. We always thought this was unusual, charge $149 per day, but give away a free ticket for a $29 car rental. More controversial however might be the change in shuttle service and pricing. The shuttle from Wanaka (timetable yet to be posted) is now $35 return, and the old free shuttle from the access road is now $10 per person. Undoubtedly there will be people upset at this, but, 10 bucks to not have to drive your car up the road? Bargain eh? Or, will this simply contribute to more cars heading up, to the already limited parking? Time will tell.
Overall, a great update from Bridget, and no doubt there will be more to come as their plans fall in place.
Now, watch the whole video if you like, it's only 4 minutes long.