Merchant Pass Program

Merchant Pass Program

The Merchant Pass benefit is exclusive to VVP and VCBA members! All Vail Valley Partnership members at the Copper level or above are eligible to participate in the Merchant Pass Program.  Please explore the program details below and if you have questions, contact Anna Robinson, VVP Program & Office Manager: (970) 477-4027.

What is a Merchant Ski Pass?

  • The Merchant Ski Pass is a powerful hiring & employee retention tool for local businesses. It not only allows businesses to provide its employees with ski passes valid at 19 mountain resorts in North America, but also allows the business to retain ownership of the pass. In the event the employee leaves, the pass may be transferred to another employee for a $110 transfer fee. Limit one transfer per pass.
  • The Merchant Ski Pass offers access to the full Vail Resorts portfolio of North American resorts! Please see below for pass options, restrictions and blackout dates.
  • Merchant Passes are valid for summer lift rides at Vail & Beaver Creek (additional fee for bike haul).
  • The Merchant Pass also includes other benefits, such as: discounted lift tickets, discounted activities, one free ski/snowboard lesson, one free Nordic lesson and more! See the FAQ section below for more details.

Please Note: The Merchant Pass is intended for use ONLY by employees of the business. Contractors, friends and family are not eligible. Vail Resorts will conduct audits throughout the season and misuse of the program will result in removal from the program and termination of all passes.

2018/2019 Merchant Pass Program Details

  • 2018/2019 Merchant Pass Options:
    • Epic Merchant Pass: $899/pass
      • Unlimited access with holiday restrictions at Vail, Beaver Creek, Park City, Heavenly, Northstar, Kirkwood, Stowe and Whistler Blackcomb.
      • Unlimited access with no holiday restrictions for Breckenridge, Keystone, Wilmot, Afton Alps, Mt. Brighton, Arapahoe Basin, Okemo, Mount Sunapee, Crested Butte, and Stevens Pass.
      • 7 days at Telluride with no holiday restrictions.
      • Holiday restriction dates include:
        • November 23 – 24, 2018 (Thanksgiving)
        • December 26 – 31, 2018 (Christmas/NYE)
        • January 19, 2019 (MLK Weekend)
        • February 16 – 17, 2019 (President’s Day)
    • Epic Local Merchant Pass: $669/pass
      • 10 Days of skiing with holiday restrictions at Vail, Beaver Creek & Whistler Blackcomb
      • Unlimited access with holiday restrictions at Park City, Heavenly, Northstar, Kirkwood & Stowe
      • Unlimited access with no holiday restrictions at Breckenridge, Keystone, Wilmot, Afton Alps, Mt. Brighton, Arapahoe Basin, Okemo, Mount Sunapee, Crested Butte, and Stevens Pass.
      • Holiday blackout dates include:
        • November 23 – 24, 2018 (Thanksgiving)
        • December 26 – 31, 2018 (Christmas/NYE)
        • January 19, 2019 (MLK Weekend)
        • February 16 – 17, 2019 (President’s Day)
  • Transfer Fee: $110 (passes may only be transferred one time each)
  • Processing Time: 3 business days from application date
  • Other Important Dates:
    • Lionshead Pass Office Opens: Friday, November 2, 2018
    • Beaver Creek Pass Office Opens: Saturday, November 3, 2018
    • Vail Mountain Opening Day: Friday, November 16, 2018
    • Beaver Creek Opening Day: Wednesday, November 21, 2018
  • Contact Info: Anna Robinson – (970) 477-4027

How Do I Purchase A Merchant Pass?

  • STEP 1 of 4 – Be a VVP Member in Good Standing
    • Membership dues must be paid in full (2019 Membership Year begins January 1st)
    • Membership at Copper Level or above
    • If you have questions about your membership level, need to make a payment, or would like to join the VVP, please contact Maren Cerimele (970) 477-4001.
  • STEP 3 of 4 – Fill Out the Merchant Pass Application
  • STEP 4 of 4 – Visit a Pass Office to Purchase Your Vouchers or Passes:
    • Eagle County Merchant Passes can be purchased from any Vail or Beaver Creek Pass Office. (Lionshead Opens 11/2; Beaver Creek Opens 11/3)
    • Please allow 3 business days from the date of application for processing
    • There are two ways to purchase Merchant Passes:
      • Option #1: Purchase Vouchers
        • Purchase vouchers in bulk & distribute to employees.
        • VOUCHERS SHOULD BE TREATED AS CASH! MAKE SURE TO RECORD THE VOUCHER # GIVEN TO EACH EMPLOYEE.
        • Employee must bring ALL of the following documentation to the pass office:
          • Pre-Paid Voucher
          • Personal ID with photo
          • Pay Stub OR Form C (Proof of Employment)
            • Please Note: using Form C will result in a Merchant Audit at some point during the 18/19 season
      • Option #2: Purchase Passes
        • Must be purchased with a company form of payment (i.e. – company check or company credit card. Company name MUST be on the form of payment. Checks can be made payable to Vail Resorts).
        • Employee must bring ALL of the following documentation to the pass office:
          • Company check or credit card
          • Personal ID with photo
          • Pay Stub OR Form C (Proof of Employment)
            • Please Note: using Form C will result in a Merchant Audit at some point during the 18/19 season

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can I buy the Eagle County pass for employees at my other locations? No. The Eagle County Merchant Pass is only available to employees who work in Eagle County. If you have employees in Summit County, please purchase their passes through the Summit County Merchant Pass Program. Employees who work anywhere other than Summit and Eagle Counties are not eligible for a Merchant Pass.
  • Does my Merchant Pass work in the summer? Yes! The Merchant Pass works at Vail & Beaver Creek for the summer season. Additional fee for bike haul will apply.
  • Is my unpaid intern eligible? Yes – your intern will need Form C as proof of employment. They will need to bring this form to the pass office along with all other necessary documentation.
  • What other benefits are included with the Merchant Pass? Please see below for additional Merchant Pass benefits – restrictions & blackout dates apply. Click here for more details!
    • Discounted Lift Tickets
    • Discounted Winter Activities @ Adventure Ridge
    • 1 Free Adult Ski or Snowboard Class Lesson at Vail or Beaver Creek
    • 1 Free introductory cross country lesson, snowshoe tour or Beaver Creek Tele-Tuesday
      • OR 1 Discounted Tele-Workshop in Vail or BC
  • How do I transfer or turn off a pass?
    • Merchant Passes may be transferred once to another employee within the same business for $110 at any Pass Office. Payment must be made in the form of a business check or business credit card. Form C or a pay stub and a photo ID are required at the time of the transfer sale.
    • All transfers must be made to a direct paid employee of the same Merchant.
    • In the case of separation of an employee from the company, the company must call 970-754-3080 to deactivate the pass of the former employee
      and record the employee’s pass number immediately.
  • I purchased more vouchers than I needed – can I get a refund for the unused portion? Yes! Unused vouchers can be returned for a refund from February 18, 2019 – April 20, 2019. NO REFUNDS AFTER APRIL 20th – NO EXCEPTIONS!
  • I purchased a pass that I don’t need anymore – can I get a refund? Passes are only refundable due to major medical injuries and all credits will be given to the Merchant. Processing fee or fee for days used may be charged against price of pass before refund, at the discretion of Vail Resorts.
  • What is a Merchant Pass Audit? Vail Resorts will be conducting significant Merchant Pass compliance audits throughout the season to maintain fairness for all businesses. All business that utilize Form C will be audited, and additional audits will be conducted at random. We ask that audited businesses adhere to all requests in a timely manner. Failure to respond or non compliance with the program rules will result in the deactivation of all current Merchant Passes and can affect future participation in the Merchant Pass program. Listed are the acceptable forms of proof of employment:
    • Pay stub from within the last two weeks or payroll records
    • Valid business license
    • Sales tax payment in Eagle, Lake or Garfield counties
    • A local sales tax license
    • A Colorado business income tax return
  • Contact info for further questions:

QUALIFIER: Eagle County Air Alliance (EGE) Contribution

  • The EGE Air Alliance is a 501c (6) non-profit that provides funding to the Eagle County Regional Airport so that Vail Valley businesses, residents and communities have a strong and vibrant flight service program. Formed in 2002, the EGE Air Alliance is a public-private partnership that includes businesses of all sizes and Vail Valley community stakeholders, as well as towns and municipalities in Eagle County.
  • Contribution is based on employment numbers:
    • 1-10 employees = $200 contribution
    • 11-20 employees = $300 contribution
    • 20+ employees = $500 contribution
  • Donations must be paid in full within 2 weeks of the invoice date.
  • Please fill out the Merchant Pass Application and choose “EGE Air Alliance Donation” as your qualifier. You will receive a follow up email with instructions on how to make your donation.

QUALIFIER: Platinum Service Program (PSP)

  • The Platinum Service Program (PSP) is a secret shopper program customized by the business to meet and track customer service goals using a digital monitoring system for real-time feedback.
  • For the 2018-2019 winter season, Vail Valley Partnership is once again partnering with Customer Impact, one of the largest firms in the Mystery Shop industry.
  • Receiving an average score of 90% or higher after 6 shops results in the business receiving a Platinum Service Award. Business will receive promotion, certification and digital marketing material for achieving a Platinum Rating.
  • VVP members receive a 20% discount! Shops range from $50-$100 per shop.
  • To qualify for the Merchant Pass, your business must:
    • Be registered to participate within 2 weeks of Merchant Pass Application date
    • Participate in a minimum of 6 shops
    • Complete 6 shops by April 30, 2019.
  • Please fill out the Merchant Pass Application and choose “Platinum Service Program” as your qualifier. You will receive a follow up email with instructions on how to register for the program.

QUALIFIER: Lodging Quality Assurance (LQA)

  • Currently, any lodging property sold through Vail/Beaver Creek Reservations and Vail Valley Partnership (www.VailOnSale.com) must undergo a detailed interior inspection from which they are assigned a Lodging Quality Assurance (LQA) rating of Platinum, Gold, Silver or Bronze. This effort to ensure an un-biased and accurate depiction of each lodging property demonstrates the Vail Valley’s commitment to offering its guests an exceptional experience.
  • Open to Lodging members only.
  • Lodging members that are currently participating in LQA, and plan to continue doing so, are already qualified to participate in the Merchant Pass Program! Simply choose LQA as your qualifier on the Merchant Pass Application (link coming soon!) and no further action is necessary. The VVP will verify your LQA status internally.
  • If you are participating in LQA for the first time, you must register within 2 weeks of your Merchant Pass Application date. Please fill out the Merchant Pass Application and choose “Lodging Quality Assurance Program” as your qualifier. You will receive a follow up email with instructions on how to register.

QUALIFIER: Vail Chamber & Business Association Winter Update

  • PLEASE NOTE: This qualifier is intended for Vail-based businesses, but is open to the public. The meeting will include Vail Chamber & Business Association info and updates, Vail Resorts and Vail Mountain updates, information from local media/marketing organizations, and refreshments. We encourage business owners and their employees to attend. Vail information packets will be distributed.
  • Cost: $65
  • Date: Thursday, November 1st, 2018
  • Time: 8:30 – 10:30am
  • Location: The Antlers Vail. Please plan to park in the Lionshead parking structure.
  • In order to qualify for the Merchant Pass, the business owner or a key manager must be present and their name MUST appear on the attendance sheet.
  • Please fill out the Merchant Pass Application and choose “VCBA Winter Update” as your qualifier – you will receive a follow up email with instructions.

QUALIFIER: Beaver Creek One Village Meeting

  • Formerly known as the Beaver Creek Guest Service Update
  • PLEASE NOTE: This qualifier is for Beaver Creek businesses only. You must have a brick & mortar location in Beaver Creek to be eligible for this qualifier.  The full afternoon schedule includes vendor Expo, dynamic speakers, mountain news, ski season updates, great door prizes, and a village wide open house. Grand Prize Winner is announced the same day!  Be there for your chance to win BIG. Don’t miss all of the great information, fun, friends, and prizes as we continue to build upon last year’s program! All Beaver Creek employees are welcome – please post this notice for those who do not have email access.
  • Cost: Free
  • Date: Thursday, November 15, 2018
  • Time: 1:00 – 6:00pm
  • Location: Vilar Performing Arts Center
  • In order to qualify for the Merchant Pass, the business owner or a key manager must be present and their name MUST appear on the attendance sheet.
  • Please fill out the Merchant Pass Application and choose “Beaver Creek One Village Meeting” as your qualifier – you will receive a follow up email with instructions.