Last year, ski travel returned as a popular trend as a result of a long natural snow season and record snowfalls that gave winter sports enthusiasts lots of extra time to enjoy them.
Now that the holiday season is upon us once more, the ski season is about to start as well, and consumers are starting to begin their travel planning. With that in mind, insurance and travel professionals are recommending that travelers take certain precautions to keep safety at the top of their list during this year’s winter season.
Some of the tips that they have suggested for saving money and preventing injury include the following:
• Wear a helmet – according to statistics from the National Ski Areas Association (NSAA), more than half (57 percent) of snowboarders and skiers wore helmets during the ski season of 2009-2010. This was an increase of 25 percent over the ski season of 2002-2003. It also estimates that head injuries are reduced by 30 to 50 percent by helmet use.
• Check state laws about helmet use – some states, such as New Jersey, have youth helmet laws for children and/or teens. In NJ, skiers and snowboarders who are 17 years old or younger must wear a helmet, as of November 1, 2011. A similar measure has been introduced in California, though it has not passed yet. It is important to check the laws in the state in which you will be skiing.
• Consider supplemental health insurance – even skiers who already have health insurance may find that the gaps in their plans do not provide certain coverages in the case of a ski accident, causing them to have to pay-out-of pocket for medical services. Consider an accident insurance plan to fill those gaps.