Are you planning a winter sports getaway to the Rocky Mountains of Colorado? The ski resorts in Vail Valley, Summit County, and Aspen/Snowmass are some of the world’s most sought-after destinations for skiing and snowboarding, drawing over 12 million visitors annually. However, visiting a new destination can be daunting, especially when traveling with family or a group of friends. There are many things to consider ahead of time to ensure a great trip for everyone. If you’re coming to the Colorado Rockies for the first time, you may have a few questions about how to plan your vacation. Do we need a car? How will we get from the airport to the resort? How do we transport all our ski gear?
Blue Sky Limo has put together this guide to transportation options for visiting the Rockies in the winter months to help answer all those questions, making your journey to the Rockies as convenient as possible. From airport options to transportation choices and whether or not you need a car, this guide will provide you with all the information you need to make your next ski vacation a success. You’ll still have to plan which hotel you’ll be staying at, which restaurants to dine at, and figure out how to wake up the kids for ski school, but at least getting from the airport to your accommodations will be one less thing to worry about. So, let’s dive right in:
Rocky Mountain Airport Options
There are two main airports serving the major Colorado Rocky Mountain resorts: Denver International Airport (DIA) and Eagle Regional Airport (EGE). Aspen also has its own regional airport, but it is frequently closed due to adverse weather conditions and offers very few flights. Most people traveling to Aspen choose to fly into Denver or Eagle instead, so we’ll focus on these two airports in our guide.
Denver International Airport (DIA)
Denver International Airport (DIA) is a top choice for those flying into Colorado for a Rocky Mountain winter vacation. It offers direct flights from over 150 domestic and international locations, and its internal rail system makes it easy to navigate and get from the gates to the main terminal building. Once you’ve landed, it’s important to note that the drive from DIA to your resort destination will typically take around 90 minutes. Therefore, making transfer arrangements in advance is essential to ensure a smooth and convenient journey to your ski vacation destination.
Eagle Regional Airport (EGE)
Eagle Airport, located in Gypsum and 35 miles away from Vail, is a convenient choice for skiers and snowboarders as it is located next to Interstate 70, making it easy for travelers to fly in, grab their luggage and quickly transfer to their resort destination. With fewer passengers and shorter wait times at security checkpoints, the small size of Eagle Airport is an advantage. Additionally, this airport is closer to ski areas than Denver International, making the drive to the slopes significantly shorter. Although this airport has fewer direct flights than DIA, more airlines are starting to offer service to Eagle each year, making it a viable option depending on your departure location.
Do We Need a Car?
When planning your ski vacation in the Colorado Rockies, one question that may come to mind is whether or not you need a car. The good news is that if you’re staying in either Vail or Beaver Creek, the answer is no. Both resorts have an extensive free in-town bus system that can take you everywhere you want to go, making it easy to get around without a car.
One of the main advantages of not having a car is that it allows you to fully relax and enjoy your vacation without the stress of navigating unfamiliar roads, finding parking or dealing with traffic. The most convenient way to get from your accommodation to the slopes is to take the in-town buses, which are very convenient and run every 15 minutes. Having a car in Vail or Beaver Creek is more hassle than worth it. Both towns have plenty of dining and entertainment options easily accessible by the free in-town buses.
How Will We get from the Airport to the Resort?
Once you land at either Eagle Regional or Denver International Airport, you will need to find a way to get from the airport to your hotel or residence at one of the resorts. The question is how? There are several options to consider. Each has its pros and cons, so it’s important to weigh them carefully to determine the best fit for you.
Renting a car while on vacation might seem like a straightforward means of taking care of all your transportation needs, but this isn’t necessarily the case when visiting the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. For starters, if you’re traveling during the winter months, you must be aware of hazardous winter driving conditions, including blizzards, road closures, icy roads and general low visibility. Driving through the mountains in the winter is not for the faint of heart.
Also worth considering is that parking is not only very limited during the busy ski season but also incredibly expensive. Hotels charge up to $50/day for valet parking these days, and parking at the resorts is almost as much. In addition, due to their location, gas prices at resort towns are almost double what they are in other parts of Colorado. All in all, renting a car might be the last thing you want to do, especially considering that most Rocky Mountain resort towns provide free in-town bus and shuttle services to get from your hotel to the slopes, which are highly convenient and dependable.
Another traditional option for getting from the airport to your resort is a traditional taxi service. The major issue you will face is the type of vehicle these services employ. Most DIA cabs will be sedan-style cars not ideally suited for driving into the mountains. They will also not likely have enough cargo space if you’re traveling with a few other people and you all have ski gear to bring.
At Eagle Regional Airport, most cabs will be either SUVs or high-capacity vans. You should be able to fit quite a lot of equipment into one of these services; however, you will find that their prices are going to be about on par with hiring a private airport car service which provides a luxury premium vehicle and highly trained chauffeur (not to mention guaranteed pickup time); so for added comfort and peace of mind, it’s probably best to skip the taxi service options from either DIA or EGE.
Ride-Sharing Services (Uber/Lyft)
While ride-sharing services are a popular and convenient option in urban areas, they are not recommended for getting to the Rockies from the airport. The long-distance and uncertain road conditions make it a less reliable and potentially unsafe option. Furthermore, many drivers may reject the trip or be unprepared for the journey.
From Denver International taking an Uber to Vail or Beaver Creek, Aspen, or any other major resort is frankly not even worth considering. From Eagle Regional, you could consider taking an Uber. The trouble with these services is that the vehicles are not regulated or inspected to any degree of safety precautions. On top of the safety concerns, there’s simply no guarantee that you will be able to find a driver when you land. So why not book a transportation service in advance and have some peace of mind?
Shared Shuttle Services
A popular way to get from DIA or Eagle Regional to your Rocky Mountain resort destination will be via a shared airport shuttle provider. Shared shuttle services can be a cost-effective option, especially for groups. Drivers are typically experienced and knowledgeable about the area, but departure times and destinations may be limited and not align with your flight schedule.
Additionally, space for luggage and ski gear may be limited. Furthermore, shared shuttles are often crowded, and you may have to wait for other passengers to be dropped off before reaching your destination.
Private Car Services
For a more comfortable and hassle-free experience, a private car service is the best option. A professional driver will pick you up at the airport and take you to your destination in comfort and style. Private car service providers offer large spacious, comfortable luxury SUVs with many amenities such as high-speed WiFi, charging ports, refreshments and entertainment options to make your journey as pleasant as possible.
When you book a private Rocky Mountain Airport car service, you can expect a high level of service from start to finish. Your driver will be waiting for you at the airport, ready to assist you with your luggage and escort you to your vehicle. The car will be clean and detailed, and your chauffeur will be courteous and professional. They will also be able to answer any questions about your destination and the surrounding area.
Blue Sky Limo LLC is one of the Rockies’ most highly reputed private airport car service providers. We offer a more luxurious experience than the other providers. Our premier fleet of world-class luxury SUVs is the best of its class, and we provide the ultimate 5-star private airport transportation in the Colorado Rockies.
How will we Transport all our Ski Gear?
Transporting your ski gear can be a concern when planning a ski vacation to the Rockies. Shared airport shuttle services, car rentals or rideshare services may not have enough cargo space to accommodate your equipment. A private airport car service is a good option because large SUVs have ample cargo space and rooftop boxes that can be used to store your skis, boots or additional items.
Blue Sky Limo LLC is a great option for those traveling to the Rockies with lots of luggage and ski gear. We have years of experience transporting skiers from both Eagle and Denver Airports, and our professional drivers are trained to help load your belongings safely. Most of them are avid skiers and are familiar with ski equipment and how to best safely stow it for transportation. Our service lets you know that your ski gear will be transported safely and securely.
Final Thoughts On Visiting the Rockies This Winter
The Colorado Rocky Mountains offer an unparalleled winter sports experience, but getting to your destination can be a bit of a logistical puzzle. With this helpful guide, you have all the information you need to make an informed decision to plan a successful trip. You can ensure a smooth and stress-free journey to the mountains by making your airport transportation arrangements.
We hope we’ve provided you with some valuable information to make your planning process a little easier. At Blue Sky Limo, we are all long-time Vail Valley locals. We are just as passionate about skiing and the Rocky Mountains as we are about providing our guests with the ultimate luxury airport transportation services. We want to make sure that the only thing you have to worry about when coming to Colorado is simply enjoying your ski vacation.
Don’t hesitate to contact one of our resort-based locations when you’re ready to plan your next Rocky Mountain adventure – we’ll be more than happy to assist you and be your private airport transportation provider.
Blue Sky Limo 24/7 Customer Support
Vail, Colorado 81657