Merchant Pass Program

About the 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 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 35 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 (ski with a friend & buddy passes) 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.

Merchant Pass Program Details

  • PLEASE NOTE: There are a number of COVID-19 related changes to the 2020/2021 Merchant Pass Program. All changes/updates are noted in red font.
  • A Merchant Pass Q&A Webinar was held on November 5th – the session included lots of great information on changes to this year’s passes, parameters for discount, reservation system details and more. 

 

2020/2021 Merchant Pass Options:

  • The 20% discount can only be used for one purchase. This means you must purchase all of your discounted passes at the same time. We suggest buying vouchers in bulk, even if you don’t know how many passes you will need this season, because the unused vouchers can be returned for a full refund.
  • To confirm the number of discounts you are eligible for: email the merchant pass team at vbcmerchantpass@vailresorts.com. You can also call 970-754-3080, but the email account will have a faster response time.  
  • Merchant Passes will require reservations to access resorts and priority access will be granted until Dec. 7 for Merchant Pass holders to make up to 7 Priority Reservation Days prior to lift tickets going on sale starting Dec 8. 
  • Merchant Passes are not eligible for EpicCoverage, but may be transferred one time per season for a $110 transfer fee.
    • Epic Merchant Pass: $979/pass, ($783 with credit)*
      • *As a onetime offering and in recognition of a shortened 19/20 season, for each Merchant Pass purchased during the 19/20 season, Merchants will be eligible to receive a 20% credit for their 20/21 Merchant Passes purchases, if purchased prior to December 6th, 2020. This takes the Merchant Epic pass price to $783.
      • Unlimited access with a reservation during core season (holiday restrictions apply) at Vail, Beaver Creek, Whistler Blackcomb, Park City, Heavenly, Northstar, Kirkwood and Stowe.
      • Unlimited access with a reservation during core season (with no holiday restrictions) for Breckenridge, Keystone, Wilmot, Afton Alps, Mt Brighton, Okemo, Mount Sunapee, Crested Butte, Stevens Pass, Mount Snow, Attitash Mountain Resort, Wildcat Mountain, Crotched Mountain, Hunter Mountain, Liberty Mountain Resort, Roundtop Mountain Resort, Whitetail Resort, Jack Frost, Big Boulder, Alpine Valley, Boston Mills, Brandywine, Mad River Mountain, Hidden Valley, Snow Creek, Paoli Peaks, Perisher, Australia (2021 Access), Falls Creek, Australia (2021 Access), Hotham, Australia (2021 Access).
      • Partner Resort Access: 7 days at Sun Valley & Snowbasin (restrictions may apply)
      • Holiday restriction dates include:
        • November 27 – 28, 2020 (Thanksgiving)
        • December 26 – 31, 2020 (Christmas/NYE)
        • January 16, 2021 (MLK Weekend)
        • February 13 – 14, 2021 (President’s Day)
    • Epic Local Merchant Pass: $729/pass, ($583 with credit)*
      • *As a onetime offering and in recognition of a shortened 19/20 season, for each Merchant Pass purchased during the 19/20 season, Merchants will be eligible to receive a 20% credit for their 20/21 Merchant Passes purchases, if purchased prior to December 6th, 2020. This takes the Merchant Epic Local pass price to $583.
      • 10 days of skiing with reservation during core season (holiday restrictions apply) at Vail, Beaver Creek, and Whistler Blackcomb.
      • Unlimited access with a reservation during core season (holiday restrictions apply) at Park City, Heavenly, Northstar, Kirkwood, and Stowe.
      • Unlimited access with a reservation during core season (with no holiday restrictions) at Breckenridge, Keystone, Wilmot, Afton Alps, Mt Brighton, Okemo, Mount Sunapee, Crested Butte, Stevens Pass, Mount Snow, Attitash Mountain Resort, Wildcat Mountain, Crotched Mountain, Hunter Mountain, Liberty Mountain Resort, Roundtop Mountain Resort, Whitetail Resort, Jack Frost, Big Boulder, Alpine Valley, Boston Mills, Brandywine, Mad River Mountain, Hidden Valley, Snow Creek & Paoli Peaks.
      • Partner Resort Access: 2 days at Sun Valley & Snowbasin (restrictions may apply)
      • Holiday restriction dates include:
        • November 27 – 28, 2020 (Thanksgiving)
        • December 26 – 31, 2020 (Christmas/NYE)
        • January 16, 2021 (MLK Weekend)
        • February 13 – 14, 2021 (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: Wednesday, November 4, 2020
    • Beaver Creek Pass Office Opens: Saturday, November 7, 2020
    • Vail Mountain Opening Day: Friday, November 20, 2020
    • Beaver Creek Opening Day: Wednesday, November 25, 2020
  • Contact Info: Anna Robinson – anna@vailvalleypartnership.com,  (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 (2021 Membership Year begins January 1st)
    • Membership at Copper Level or above (Click here to view the 2021 Membership Tiers)
    • 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 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 11/4; Beaver Creek Opens 11/7)
    • Please allow 3 business days from the date of application for processing
    • Merchant passes are not eligible for EpicCoverage but may be transferred once per season for a $110 fee. 
    • There are two ways to purchase Merchant Passes:
      • Option #1: Purchase Vouchers
        • Purchase vouchers in bulk & distribute to employees.
        • 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).
        • 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 20/21 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 20/21 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.
    • Six buddy lift tickets provide the option to purchase a ticket to ski and ride during restricted periods. The buddy tickets also may be used for friends and family all season. Payment does not need to be made by the merchant pass holder; a friend or family may pay for the ticket. Coupons belong to the pass holder and pass holder must be present to redeem.
    • Six ski-with-a-friend tickets offer up to six days of unrestricted skiing or snowboarding for family or friends at a discounted rate that varies by date. Tickets will be electronically loaded onto the Merchant Pass and can be redeemed at any ticket window. Payment does not need to be made by the merchant pass holder; a friend or family may pay for the ticket. Coupons belong to the pass holder and pass holder must be present to redeem.
    • Access to Vail Resorts’ award winning and popular ski and snowboard application EpicMix. For more information visit EpicMix.com
    • Summer lift access at Vail & Beaver Creek (excluding bike haul)
    • Due to COVID-19 restrictions, Merchant Passes will not include ski/snowboard lessons, telemark workshops or Adventure Ridge discounts for the 2020-21 season.
    • For more information please check www.vail.com/vbcmerchantpass 
  • 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 20, 2021 – April 11, 2021. NO REFUNDS AFTER APRIL 11th – 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: "Customer Service in a Pandemic" Workshop

In the advent of the 2020 pandemic, frontline workers have been exposed to unprecedented physical and emotional demands that leave them vulnerable to the effects that acute stress due to balancing their jobs, providing excellent customer service and protecting their own health and the health of their loved ones. We are all experiencing both pandemic and compassion fatigue.

Working with the public is more complicated than ever. What worked to support ourselves, our families and customers in the past may not be what is needed now. We are having to find ways to connect with our customers when we can’t see faces fully, balance greater economic disparity, confront different beliefs about protective measures all while providing the same level of service as expected prior to the pandemic. This is going to take new and different skills for all of us. Join us for an interactive workshop focused on anticipating these changes and taking care of yourself during this unprecedented time. 

  • Cost: $50 (VVP Members)/$75 (Public Price)
  • Format: Webinar
  • Dates (Choose One):
  • PLEASE NOTE: Each session is limited to 20 people and led by 2 facilitators to encourage participation and meaningful discussion. RSVPs and pre-payment are required! This course is intended for front line employees & supervisors
  • Please fill out the Merchant Pass Application and choose “Customer Service in a Pandemic” as your qualifier – you will receive a follow up email with instructions.

QUALIFIER: Vail Chamber & Business Association Winter Update

  • PLEASE NOTE: This qualifier is intended for Vail-based businesses, but is open to the public.
  • Details: The webinar will include presentations from the Town of Vail & Vail Resorts regarding winter operations and new season protocols, details on the Magic of Lights and Eagle County Public Health. RSVPs are required to get webinar link.
  • Cost: $30 (non-VCBA members only)
  • Date: Thursday, November 12th, 2020
  • Time: 9:00 – 11:00am
  • Format: Webinar (Click here to RSVP)
  • In order to qualify for the Merchant Pass, the business owner or a key manager must attend the session. You must be present on the webinar for the entire event. We will verify & monitor all logins for the session.
  • Please fill out the Merchant Pass Application and choose “VCBA Winter Update” as your qualifier.

QUALIFIER: Beaver Creek One Village Meeting

  • 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.  
  • Details: The full schedule includes dynamic speakers, mountain news, ski season updates, village happenings, new merchants and a Q&A panel. As always – awesome prizes & gift cards for the audience! All Beaver Creek employees are welcome – please share this info with your employees. RSVPs are required to get webinar link.
  • Cost: Free
  • Date: Monday, November 16th, 2020
  • Time: 9:30- 10:30am
  • Format: Webinar (Click here to RSVP)
  • In order to qualify for the Merchant Pass, the business owner or a key manager must attend the session. You must be present on the webinar for the entire event. We will verify & monitor all logins for the session.
  • Please fill out the Merchant Pass Application and choose “Beaver Creek One Village Meeting” as your qualifier.

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: 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 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.