The Season Workers Guide: Find Ski Jobs on the Spot
We would maintain that if you are in the UK and want to do a ski season then the safest way is to sort out a ski job before you leave. However, all the bars, hotels, ski shops, rental companies, restaurants and very occasionally the ski stations themselves will employ native English speaking staff.
Obviously the better your French or whatever language they speak locally the better your employment chances. Writing to local businesses with your CV is pretty much a waste of time, far better to get out there and trek around asking for work and making acquaintances with business owners in resort. There’s no strict rule of course but we would suggest that late summer is probably the best time to go round looking, business owners will be back from their holidays and starting to prepare for the coming season.
If it goes wrong
Say you start your ski job with a local company and it turns out that by ‘bar staff’ they meant ‘pole dancer’ and this isn’t your thing then what do you do? Fortunately the seasonal industry as a whole reports around 20% staff turnover in the first 6 weeks of the season. This means lots of jobs for replacement staff early on. If you fit the profile they want and are already in resort then you have a great chance of securing employment with a tour operator
If you can’t find a job but want to go anyway
We would say you should have an honest look at why you couldn’t get a job and ask yourself if you are likely to be any more successful if you just go anyway. We wouldn’t advocate this but if you insist on going and can’t afford a seasonal let or ski instructor course, you can claim jobseekers allowance for about 3 months. This only applies if you are in an EU country and have claimed 4 weeks worth in the UK (check with the Benefits Office for full details).
Better sorted in advance
Getting a job with a tour operator solves the digs, wages and usually the food, lift pass and equipment problems before you step out of the country – what else is there to worry about!?