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Vail’s Epic Passes Are Getting More Expensive—and More Essential

If you prefer to ski over holiday weeks, there’s a new reason to make the investment. 

Vail, Colorado. 

Vail, Colorado. 

Photographer: Michael Ciaglo/Bloomberg

It was a bold move when in March 2021, then-CEO of Vail Resorts Inc. Rob Katz announced that his company would be slashing the price of its most profitable product, its season passes, by a full 20%, to $583. The company’s stock price dropped on the news, and yet the strategy bore out: Over the course of the season, Vail sold 2.1 million Epic Passes, representing a 76% increase from 2019. For customers, the result was a mixed bag that included great values but also on-mountain overcrowding, which stemmed from higher volumes of passholders as well as supply chain issues and labor shortages.

Now under the leadership of new CEO Kirsten Lynch, those prices are creeping upward again. For the 2022/23 winter season, early bird Epic Pass prices start at $626 for limited “local” access; the nationwide, unrestricted passes start at $841. Sales opened March 21 and will see more price jumps as the season comes closer.