I have a number of friends living the Expat dream and I have to admit it sounds pretty good. Don't get me wrong - I am sure the day to day can be just as 'groundhog' as here in Blighty (even with a live in maid!) but the overall level of glamour seems to exceed what goes on in these parts.
But how does it work as a skier? Well - don't fear - for those of you living in warmer climes (or just far, far away) who tend to be used to regular long-distance travel, a trip to the Alps doesn't have to be as complicated as you might imagine. Here are my top tips:
- Make the most of your resources - Ski Dubai (for those of you living there) is a great place to warm up your ski legs or to send the kids off for some beginner lessons allowing you all to really make the most of the real snow when you get there.
- Flights - pick a resort that is in close proximity to an airport that works for you. Geneva, Zurich, Munich and Lyon (amongst others) are international enough to offer direct flights from many a far flung corner of the world - offering a huge selection of resorts to consider.
- School holidays - often the expat school holidays will be slightly different to the UK and Europe - make the most of this as you should have the pick of accommodation and much better prices - perhaps to such an extent that the airfare difference is covered.
- Arrival day - if your weekend differs from our traditional Saturday-Sunday, don't be afraid to ask for what works best for you. I can't promise that everywhere will offer your exact requirements but, out of peak season, a Thursday or Friday arrival day should be able to be accommodated.
- Short breaks - again, if you are used to the long flight and are short of time, it is still possible to enjoy a shorter three or four nights in the mountains to fit with your lifestyle. Direct flight, short transfer and BOOM you will be on the slopes before you know it!
- A holiday for one and all - sometimes living abroad means most of your holidays are taken up with trips home to catch up with family. Why not suggest meeting in the mountains next time? Make that Christmas visit a really special occasion by taking a chalet - your own home from home for the week. A chalet can accommodate a varied group size (generally 2-32 people) and allows you to all feel equally at home rather than squeezing into your loved ones’ spare room. There are still some great Christmas chalet options available for this year if you have yet to finalise your plans.
There are of course places to ski aside from the European Alps; Lebanon and Iran are just a hop if you are based in the Middle East, Japan is known for awesome powder fields, the US and Canada speak for themselves and there are plenty of options in the Southern Hemisphere too. But if your ski trip is incomplete without some of those traditional Alpine charms, vin chaud, lederhosen, fondue, tobogganing and après ski to name a few then please do get in touch at email@example.com for help, advice and booking the perfect accommodation. The Mountains are Calling....oh yes they are!
Living in the sun has countless benefits - but the snowy Alps are hard to forget - and there is no need!