Big White learns from last season, prepares for different scenarios

Big White passport plans

Big White Ski Resort is preparing for another COVID-19 ski season.

Skiers will be able to access lifts, retail, rentals, washrooms and cafeteria tables in the day lodges without a vaccine passport, but if you want to sit down at a restaurant, you'll need to have proof of vaccination and a mask.

Resort senior vice president Michael J. Ballingall says those are the biggest questions they are being asked in advance of winter.

For those who are worried about the rules changing again or the resort being shut down, Big White is offering a "no questions asked" refund policy right up until opening day. The resort will also offer a refundable pass option that people can purchase for $25.

Ballingall says planning for the ski season has been complicated, they have three different scenarios they are working with right now and that may change again by opening day, November 25.

"There will be very few people at the resort who aren't double vaccinated. Those who aren't vaccinated are still welcome but they will have to wear a mask and keep their distance," he said.

Big White has learned lessons from the last ski season and they will be leaving the picnic tables and outdoor washrooms out this year. Ballingall says he expects the tailgating in the parking lot to continue.

"Outside is better than inside. We will have lots of outdoor seating, it'll be whatever you're comfortable doing."

Ballingall says he expects 80 per cent of skiers this season will be from B.C., and unlike last season, they will not be refusing any accommodation bookings, "we're not doing that this year. We're leaving the accommodations open for Canadians this year."

Big White has been struggling with online booking for about week now but they have their online system back up and running, "we're back up as of (Tuesday). When your servers go down it's frustrating for everybody."

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