This week, the Ski Club of Great Britain released the results of their annual survey, conducted for them by Spike Marketing.

The data was based on 20,000 contemporary responses gathered via 28 partners within the industry.

Here are five takeaways from the report:

Maybe an aging market isn’t so bad…

For many years, the ski industry has been bemoaning the fact that the average age of skiers keeps increasing and there are few younger people taking up the sport.

However, maybe that’s not all bad news.

Roy Barker from Spike pointed out that 75% of the UK’s wealth is owned by the 45-74 age group. He wasn’t suggesting a wealth tax on the baby boomer generation, but instead that this group is less likely to be affected by a recession.

He also observed that there’s no shortage of oldies around, with half a million more fifty-somethings in the UK than forty-somethings.

This seems reasonable enough in the short run. The only problem I can see with this is that fifty-somethings become sixty-somethings become seventy-somethings, and even with improvements in hip/knee replacements and innovations such as the Ski Mojo, as they age, fewer will take ski holidays, regardless of how much money they have.

A recession may not have too significant an impact

The fact that that 69% of respondents expect their financial position to be the better or the same in the next 12 months might be because the survey was of skiers, and that more skiers are older, and that older people are more likely to have more wealth.

However, one quarter of the same group expect their finances to get worse, so it’s not all good news.

Consumer perception is everything…

The government seems to be doing all it can to prevent any recovery in the UK travel industry.

After waiting three months to introduce a quarantine, then dropping it (for most countries) within three weeks, the recent decision to enforce a quarantine for Spain has set back bookings again.

The Ski Club survey demonstrates how important consumer perception is.

While 27% of 11,000 skiers who travelled last winter would travel again immediately, two-thirds will only do so ‘when the time is right’.

Encouragingly 97% do intend to go skiing next winter, but only ‘if it is possible’ – and with the UK government doing their best to remove any certainly about booking holidays, selling holidays for this winter remains difficult.

France dominates Austria

The Ski Club asked which country skiers had visited on their previous holiday. Almost half listed France – a higher figure than previously reported.

Disappointingly for Austria, only 19% of skiers took their last holiday there, with 11% in Italy and 5% to Switzerland.

Only a few years ago, Crystal were reporting 35% of skiers heading to France and 28% to Austria.

Coronavirus hasn’t put people off skiing

A final positive note was that skiers affected by Coronavirus last winter have not been put off ski holidays.

This makes sense: anyone whose annual holiday was due for Easter will be desperate to ski again.

The only caveat we have to solve is the thorny ‘if it is possible’ aspect to that. Will we ever know for certain?

Sadly, it seems unlikely. Book your holiday, but check your insurance.