guide to ski and snowboard rentals
Guide to Ski and Snowboard Rentals
Ski and snowboard equipment rental is a common choice for beginners to the sport — but renting isn’t just for beginners.
More and more seasoned skiers and snowboarders see the benefits of renting equipment over buying, and many ski and snowboard shops near you offer reliable rental options. Whether you're a beginner or a more experienced enthusiast, there's a lot to love about rental gear
at any skill level.
Why Should You Consider Renting Your Ski and Snowboard Gear?
Ski and snowboard gear rentals are a good option when it comes to getting the gear you need for your next big ski trip. Our guide to rental ski and snowboard gear tells you where to rent equipment, what pieces to rent and why you might consider renting over buying.
What advantages does renting your skis and snowboards offer over buying?
The major benefits of using rental ski and snowboard gear include:
- Price: How much does it cost to rent skis or a snowboard? Every shop will vary slightly. It also depends on how long you want to rent for - a day, a weekend, a season, etc. Prices vary based on the type of skis and snowboards you purchase. Renting can work out to be cheaper than buying if you aren't able to get to the mountains on a regular basis from year-to-year. While the price difference may even out if you plan to rent your gear frequently, renting is one way to save if you don’t head out on the slopes very often.
- Commitment: When you pay the full price to purchase a brand-new pair of skis or a snowboard, there’s pressure to get your money’s worth. When you rent, you won’t have this worry.
- Convenience: If you’re traveling, taking your skis or snowboard with you on the plane can add an extra layer of stress to your trip, especially if you're worried about how the airline might handle them or if you have a layover and they don't make it to your final destination with you. Packing the skis or boards into the car for a several days drive could be doable, but if you're tight on space because the whole family is coming along, renting when you get there could be a less stressful option. By choosing to rent, you can skip these frustrations. Wait till you get to the resort, rent equipment and then return it when you’re finished. Just keep in mind, rentals lines at a resort may be long and you will not know the condition of the rentals until you get there. Buckman's rentals are kept tuned up and are high-quality options that are replaced every few seasons.
- Maintenance: When you buy skis and snowboards, you’re the one responsible for making sure they stay in top condition. If you don't maintain them, they’ll begin to perform poorly and it’s up to you to get them tuned-up again. Renting shifts this responsibility to the rental shop. You can turn your equipment back in at the end of the day and never have to worry about waxing, minor repairs or maintenance of any kind (as long as you take good care of it while you are renting it).
When you visit Buckman's for your rental needs, we measure your foot and take your weight, height, age and skill level to ensure we give you the right gear. We hook you up with everything you need based on your exact needs to provide the best experience possible and a fun, safe time on the slopes.
Could renting your next snowboard or set of skis be an option worth checking out? Here's what you should know about the rental process.
Tips for Renting Skis, Snowboards and Other Essential Gear
If you've never shopped around for this type of equipment before and don't have much experience, it's very easy to accidentally select the wrong size snowboard, or ski poles that are too short for you. Here at Buckman's, we understand that choosing winter sports gear out of a huge selection takes some guidance. That's why we keep the process simple. When you visit one of our shops, we ask you to fill out a form detailing personal details like height, weight and experience to determine their skill level. From there, we'll use this information to provide you with ski and snowboard equipment we think will be just right for you.
Buckman's will always aim to provide you with the gear that we think is the best choice for you, but if you have a basic understanding of what to look for in gear, plus how different pieces of equipment should fit you, that will help you.
Here are our top tips for finding the perfect gear for you:
Wondering what type of skis you should rent? The best place to start when selecting skis to rent is to know where you plan to ski plus what the height, weight and ability of everyone you are renting for. It's best if everyone is present so they can be properly sized. Additional factors are:
Shape: The width and shape of a ski will both affect the ski’s handling. Wider skis are good for deep snow and off-trail conditions, while narrower skis tend to offer a faster turning response.
Length: While there is some room for variation, most skis should reach roughly your eye level when stood on end next to you.
Ability: Skis intended for beginners will be softer and often shorter than more advanced-level skis. Skis for more experienced skiers will be a bit longer and stiffer.
Of course if skiing is all new to you, any Buckman's employee will be happy to help you find you the right rental for you without having to worry about the details!
While snowboards are very different than skis, you’ll want to keep many of the same considerations when choosing a snowboard in mind. Make sure you’re getting an appropriate snowboard for your age and for the type of snowboarding you intend to do. A few additional factors to keep for snowboards in mind are:
Snowboard length: When you stand your snowboard on end, it should reach somewhere between your nose and chin.
Snowboard width: Ideally, your boots should extend just slightly over the edges. Avoid selecting a board where your boots hang over too far because this will create a drag and slow you down.
3. Ski and Snowboard Boots
The most important piece of advice we can offer when it comes to renting either ski boots or snowboard boots is this — always try them on.
No matter how sure you are of your boot size, it’s critical that you try the boot on. Different brands and styles may run slightly larger or smaller, narrower or wider. If you try to guess and grab the size that you think might work, your entire vacation could be ruined by boots that hurt your feet and negatively impact your skiing ability.
While trying on the boot in any capacity is important, you’ll get the best results when you try the boots on with the exact socks you’ll wear to go skiing or snowboarding. Try on boots while wearing your winter socks, not the usual kind you might be wearing on the day you’re scoping out rentals. If you wear light socks to try on the boots, you may find that the boots no longer fit when you go to put them on over ski socks.
A knowledgeable salesperson can help guide you towards the right boot. While it can be tempting to settle for the first boot that feels “just ok,” remember that the ideal boot should be comfortable, not too big, not too small, not too stiff and not too soft. If it feels too loose or too tight, trust your gut and try something else instead.
Helmets are an essential part of staying safe on the slopes. They protect your head in case of a fall and can even go a long way towards keeping your head warm while you’re out in the elements. The good news is that helmets are much less involved to rent than skis or even ski boots. Simply make sure the helmet fits on your head and that the straps fasten in a way that holds the helmet on tightly without choking you in the process. We also recommend you consider buying your own helmet if you can. You will not regret owning your own snow helmet!
5. Ski and Snowboard Bindings
Ski bindings are the critical component of a ski that attaches the boot to the ski, thus helping you stay on the skis. Snowboard bindings perform the same function on a snowboard, and both are an essential part of skiing and snowboarding. Snowboard or ski bindings are typically rented together with the skis or snowboard.
6. Ski Poles
Without ski poles, it’ll be difficult to ski successfully. Ski poles are the long, slim tools you’ll hold in your hands while skiing and use to push and maneuver yourself in the direction you want to go. You’ll find ski poles available in a variety of lengths, so be sure to choose ones that are right for your height.
How Much Does It Cost to Buy or Rent Skis and Snowboards?
The average price of ski and snowboard rentals will vary depending on these factors:
- Where you’re renting from
- How many pieces of gear you’re renting
- How long you’re renting for, in terms of weekdays or the weekend
- Seasonal rental deals, which are available with Buckman's between October 1 and November 27 and between November 28 and March 31
- If you're renting adult-sized equipment for someone at least 13 years old or junior-sized equipment for a child 12 or under
You’ll find that rates vary across different rental services, packages or bundles and on holidays. At Buckman's, we offer rental packages that allow you to pay for ski and snowboard rentals each day, weekend, week or season as you see fit, for both adults and juniors. Depending on your choice, our ski rental packages can include boots, helmets, bindings and poles or just the sets of skis.
Snowboard rental packages can also be with or without boots, helmets and bindings. We also offer miscellaneous rentals such as snowshoes and a cross-country package as a bundle deal. Always remember to return your rentals promptly after you use them, and never drop them off unattended.
If you've rented with us before, you can save yourself time the next time you need gear by reserving your rentals and rental packages in advance — we can have your sizing and information saved and have your skis or board ready to go whenever you're ready for the slopes. Please visit your nearest Buckman's for more details.
Differences Between Adult and Youth Options
If you have a child who's between the ages used for gear sizing, your best option is usually to get the adult gear. Adult options are affordable and of good quality and come with the same variety as junior gear. The main differences are the sizes and most of the prices, which are generally cheaper for children young enough to get junior gear.
Buying Options for Ski and Snowboard Rentals
Did you rent gear for the season and love it? You don't have to return it — instead, take advantage of our buying options. If you rocked your rentals and got a lot of use out of them, you can get a great deal if you buy those skis or snowboards at the end of the season. With the buy option, you pay a final amount above the rental price you have already paid at the end of the season and that's it — you get to keep your gear. It's a great and easy way to purchase your winter gear, and lots of folks go with this option when they realize they want to stick with their skis or snowboard for future seasons.
Where to Rent Ski and Snowboard Gear
Looking for places to rent skis or snowboard gear near you? If you’re located in or around the Eastern PA area and are looking for local winter sports gear rental packages, stop in to visit us at Buckman’s Ski and Snowboard Shops. We offer the very best brand names in skiing and snowboarding so you can be sure you’re getting the highest quality.
We do more than just offer ski and snowboard rentals — we also provide helmets, poles, bindings, boots, base layers and more so you’ll have everything you need to get on the slopes in no time. Check out our rental packages and rates online today and learn more about how you can start renting ski and snowboard equipment from us.
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