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Whistler/Blackcomb 101

ScrubletScrublet Registered User regular
edited September 2010 in Help / Advice Forum
I'm starting to price out a trip to Whistler/Blackcomb around the end of January. I've never been there and know next to jackshit about the area or the best (read: cheapest) ways to get there. I like lists so here we go:

1. Lodging Location. Trip would be a small (4-8) group of 24-28 year olds. Typically when I plan these trips we do condos with a kitchen that strike a nice balance between getting to the slopes and getting to any kind of village or nightlife around the area. Whistler's site lists all the "locations" you can get lodging at and I don't know anything about them. Can I get some summaries of some places to go to or avoid? While we're not looking for the penthouse of locations, we are not looking for the absolute cheapest deal...a really cool spot in the village or something may be worth more than saving money.

2. Transportation. I'm half tempted to fly to Seattle, rent vehicles, and drive it, since we'd be flying out of BWI (a major Southwest hub). I've ran prices on Expedia for routes to Vancouver and they're ugly. But the Whistler site is listing some possible deals through them that might make Vancouver more of an option. However, half those deals might make us drive a couple hours to get to the appropriate airport. I'm looking for any advice and personal experiences on going from the Baltimore-Washington area to Whistler, be it through Seattle and cars or Vancouver and shuttles.

3. Anything someone who is experienced planning domestic western trips wouldn't expect. I'm used to getting groups together to hit CO, UT, etc. This is definitely a step removed from that. Any kind of costs I wouldn't expect. I'm already aware that everyone will need a passport and will have to apply now.

Any other information is welcome, except for comments on the dates...the end of January thing is pretty inflexible given a number of work/school factors. Thanks!

Scrublet on
subedii wrote: »
I hear PC gaming is huge off the coast of Somalia right now.

Posts

  • RikushixRikushix Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    1) I've been going to Whistler at least once or twice a year since I was five years old. I've stayed at Club Intrawest 95% of the time which is a members-only resort, but I've been to a few other places too. So I may be able to help you with number 1.

    As a general rule Whistler is expensive. But it sounds like you're not pinching every penny so you'll be okay. For anyone with a bit of extra money to spend it's insanely worth it and you won't be sorry.

    I might suggest the Whistler Town Suites. They're made up of three distinct buildings in the heart of Whistler Village: Bear Lodge, Deer Lodge, and Eagle Lodge. If you were to get a two bedroom, with three beds and a max occupancy of 6 people, you'd be paying $409 a night (assuming end of January) with a minimum stay of 4 nights. Of course, divided among six people that is not hugely expensive.

    Another good place is Le Chamois - some of the roomiest rooms in Whistler. Great European style layout. I looked up the price of a suite similar to the Whistler Town Suites: a two bedroom, two bathroom with a max occupancy of 6 will net you $379 a night for the 24th - 27th of January (4 nights).

    For the record these are Good Deals and are pretty standard as far as what accommodation costs in Whistler at that time of the year.

    I've stayed at the Eagle Lodge when I was young and I was actually just at Le Chamois a few months ago! I can attest both of them are pretty good. Le Chamois is in the upper village, so that's your best bet if you want to be near the base of Blackcomb. However the Whistler Town Suites are literally in the center of everything, so if you want to be in the middle of the village + really close to Whistler mountain + don't mind walking or taking the shuttle if you want to ski Blackcomb, then they're your best bet.

    Nothing in the world beats the Whistler apres-ski scene. Love hitting up Dusty's or Merlins after a good day on the slopes.

    2) Crossing the border means adding like two hundred dollars (or more!) onto your airfare. If you're coming with friends, it's probably a wise idea to fly into Seattle (a friend of mine is actually doing the same thing in November - flying from Philly to Seattle where I'll pick her up and bring her back to Vancouver). I don't think there is any shuttle or charter company that goes straight from Seattle to Whistler (unless you're willing to pay a fortune in private transportation). However, there are many options for transferring at Vancouver. I would suggest the Quick Coach, which is the shuttle bus between Seattle and Downtown Vancouver, they're absolutely everywhere, and then once you get into Vancouver, there are many different charter lines that will take you up to whistler. It's just a matter of coordinating the two. A good summary on Trip Advisor is here: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g154948-i400-k678868-Seattle_to_Whistler_without_a_Car-Whistler_British_Columbia.html

    3) Get going on your passport now. Don't leave it till the last minute because if there are mix-ups, you're screwed. If you're sure you will be arriving in Seattle and coming over by land or sea, you can get a Passport Card, which is two fifths the cost of a full passport, I believe, and can be used just like a regular passport except you can't take it on flights.

    I can't think of any other significant advice right now, but I'm going to mull it over and if I come up with anything I'll keep you posted :)

    StKbT.jpg
  • ScrubletScrublet Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Thanks a ton, I'm going to check up on that quick coach from Seattle to Vancouver to see what the prices are. I'm hoping I can pull this off, though my backup plan is a cheap trip one of my other friend's is planning to Big Sky...so if I have to put this off to 2012 it won't be the end of the world (I'll be much better set for this financially then)

    subedii wrote: »
    I hear PC gaming is huge off the coast of Somalia right now.
  • RikushixRikushix Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    No problem! Whistler is expensive but like I said, totally worth it. Along with a few friends you'll have a blast.

    Another recommendation - get going on planning the bulk of it now so you can book hotel rooms. Hotels and lodges vary but at Club Intrawest (for example) you can't book any further than 4 months away. Lodgings can book up VERY VERY QUICKLY at Whistler, so you'll want to jump on it as soon as you can if you're going there for end of January.
    Scrublet wrote: »
    so if I have to put this off to 2012 it won't be the end of the world

    Are you sure about that one? :winky:

    I'm sorry...I'm so sorry. That was awful.

    StKbT.jpg
  • darkmayodarkmayo Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Now I dont know your relationship status, but if you are single follow these rules.

    Dont Hookup with the locals
    Use protection always
    Go get checked out afterwards just in case.

  • SloSlo Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    darkmayo wrote: »
    Now I dont know your relationship status, but if you are single follow these rules.

    Dont Hookup with the locals
    Use protection always
    Go get checked out afterwards just in case.

    uhhh you must never have seen whistler. Its almost entirely populated with young, hot australians.

  • darkmayodarkmayo Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Slo wrote: »
    darkmayo wrote: »
    Now I dont know your relationship status, but if you are single follow these rules.

    Dont Hookup with the locals
    Use protection always
    Go get checked out afterwards just in case.

    uhhh you must never have seen whistler. Its almost entirely populated with young, hot australians.

    Oh I have been to whistler many many times, its not the quality of the locals , it is the STDs you will get from them that is the problem

  • Shazkar ShadowstormShazkar Shadowstorm Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Scrublet wrote: »
    Thanks a ton, I'm going to check up on that quick coach from Seattle to Vancouver to see what the prices are. I'm hoping I can pull this off, though my backup plan is a cheap trip one of my other friend's is planning to Big Sky...so if I have to put this off to 2012 it won't be the end of the world (I'll be much better set for this financially then)

    well, big sky is pretty sweet

    | Steam & XBL: Shazkar | 3DS: 3110-5421-3843 |
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