We recently reported that the launch of the Alpine Legends Superpass has been delayed until next year – but now we’re wondering whether it has a future at all.
The Superpass was announced to much fanfare across the media earlier this year. Offering access to 3 huge ski areas (Tignes-Val d’Isere, 3 Valleys and Paradiski) for 6 days it was trumpeted as the largest area covered by a single lift pass:
This incredible single lift pass seamlessly covers 5 glaciers, 391 ski lifts, and over 1300 km of marked runs. There simply is nothing else like it on the planet.
The challenge was set for hardcore skiers to get the most mileage from their week’s holiday. However, when we made enquiries last month we found the Superpass had been quietly shelved with no explanation. Following our report, the Ski Club of Great Britain did some digging and found that anyone who was eagerly awaiting the Superpass need not be too disappointed – because you can buy 2-day passes for each of the 3 ski areas separately… for less than the cost of the Superpass!
The Superpass was priced at €340. But, a two-day adult pass for the week commencing the 10th January in Tignes-Val d’Isère is 94€, 112.50€ for Paradaski and 115€ for Les Trois Vallées. In total, 6 days of skiing would amount to 321.50€ and is, in fact, almost €20 cheaper than the Superpass!
The other controversial effect of the Superpass was that its introduction meant the scrapping of the free day’s skiing in a neighbouring ski area that you used to get with your 6-day pass. So where your 6-day Espace Killy pass used to give you a day to explore Paradiski, instead you’d have to pay an extra €50 to upgrade to the Superpass to do the same thing. For most people a day trip to another resort is plenty, leaving 5 days to explore the ski area they’re staying in. In fact, anecdotally not many people seemed to know about this bonus, or use it.
The other issue we’d already raised is getting to and finding accommodation in the resorts. Most accommodation providers are set up for week-long holidays and finding short-stay beds can require some research. We suggested staying in Bourg Saint Maurice – a base in the valley between all 3 ski areas – in a campsite. With just 2 days to rag around each ski area, having to travel to and from accommodation each day on top of all your ski miles could add up to a very broken holidaymaker by the end of the 6 day stretch.
On the other hand, pushing the boundaries is the point of the exercise. After we reported on the pass’s cancellation for this year, Andy Lelean got in touch to say: “Pity this has been cancelled, would certainly have made our lives much easier on the day that we skied the whole lot end to end in one day (stopping to get lift passes along the way).” Intruiged, we asked Andy about this epic ski trip and he sent us an excellent blog about his 2013 adventure that took in Orelle, Val Thorens, Mottaret, Courcevel 1850, Courchevel 1550, Le Praz, Champagny, Plagne Centre, Plagne Bellecote, Montchavin, Peisey, Les Arcs, Villaroger, Tignes Les Brevieres, Tignes, Val D’Isere – in a single day! Read his very entertaining account here.
So the Superpass definitely has a market, but all this leaves us wondering what the idea behind the pass was, why it was shelved and will it be remodelled if it’s reintroduced? The Alpine Legends website is still live, and the dates for launch have now been changed to Winter 2016/17. How popular it might be is anyone’s guess.