have seen a lot of internet rumblings about service or lack thereof at many resorts this year. I chalk it up to low wage/high housing cost/short term employment.

Am I missing something?

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The Powder article in the December 2016 issue (not 2015 as noted below) but doesn't seem to be online yet unless you have a subscription: http://www.powder.com/magazine/december-2016/

Similar article from last spring, specifically focused on lack of affordable housing in Jackson H*** in the summer and the incentives they tried to get local homeowners to house seasonal workers:  http://www.powder.com/stories/news/housing-for-a-season-pass/#2QssB...

In the 90s when I lived/worked full time at the loaf, many of the seasonal staff did the summer season working for rafting companies or other summer tourism related business on the coast.  Even then the low wage vs. high housing cost issue was real, but it seems to have gotten more acute in the last couple years...not sure exactly what's changed but my guess is that inflation in seasonal lodging/housing costs has outpaced increase in pay scale and that is at least part of the problem...along with a general tightening of the labor market due in part to issues related to foreign worker visas (and probably a number of other factors as well).

Here's an article from last summer about the shortage of summer seasonal employees in Maine:  http://www.pressherald.com/2016/08/14/hospitality-industry-grapples...



Junior said:

Yeah, saw the article. Everyone should read it.

Still, if I'm gonna be a poor ski bum and live off free granola bars and happy hour wings, I'd rather be doing that in The Rockies than in the Greens. Just sayin.....

Maineskier69 said:

It is an excellent article.

Here in New England we have it better than the big resorts out west.


MonkeyBrook said:

Happening at all resorts across the country.  

Powder Magazine, December 2015:  – Sheltered: The lack of affordable and available housing in ski towns is beyond a crisis—it’s an emergency.   I can't seem to pull the actual article but this was a really interesting read


Junior said:

Happening at every ski area in the northeast......

Air BnB seems to take most of the blame.  

Zen Master said:

The Powder article in the December 2016 issue (not 2015 as noted below) but doesn't seem to be online yet unless you have a subscription: http://www.powder.com/magazine/december-2016/

Similar article from last spring, specifically focused on lack of affordable housing in Jackson H*** in the summer:  http://www.powder.com/stories/news/housing-for-a-season-pass/#2QssB...

In the 90s when I lived/worked full time at the loaf, many of the season staff did the summer season working for rafting companies or other summer tourism related business on the coast.  Even then the low wage vs. high housing cost issue was real, but it seems to have gotten more acute in the last couple years...not sure exactly what's changed but my guess is that inflation in seasonal lodging/housing costs has outpaced increase in pay scale and that is at least part of the problem...along with a general tightening of the labor market due in part to issues related to foreign worker visas (and probably a number of other factors as well).

Here's an article from last summer about the shortage of summer seasonal employees in Maine:  http://www.pressherald.com/2016/08/14/hospitality-industry-grapples...



Junior said:

Yeah, saw the article. Everyone should read it.

Still, if I'm gonna be a poor ski bum and live off free granola bars and happy hour wings, I'd rather be doing that in The Rockies than in the Greens. Just sayin.....

Maineskier69 said:

It is an excellent article.

Here in New England we have it better than the big resorts out west.


MonkeyBrook said:

Happening at all resorts across the country.  

Powder Magazine, December 2015:  – Sheltered: The lack of affordable and available housing in ski towns is beyond a crisis—it’s an emergency.   I can't seem to pull the actual article but this was a really interesting read


Junior said:

Happening at every ski area in the northeast......

Good point.

MonkeyBrook said:

Air BnB seems to take most of the blame.  

Interesting data on how Mass metro areas unemployment rate tumbled by 2% in last year. Could mean less people needing low paying, no benefitted jobs. Actually a good thing in one way.

http://www.wbur.org/bostonomix/2017/01/04/massachusetts-metro-joble...

In the best way a good thing let's hope it keep trending up.

it's certainly tough to whine about clean tables at my ski resort with many people have a hard time making ends meet. 

#1stworldproblem

MissWynter said:

Interesting data on how Mass metro areas unemployment rate tumbled by 2% in last year. Could mean less people needing low paying, no benefitted jobs. Actually a good thing in one way.

http://www.wbur.org/bostonomix/2017/01/04/massachusetts-metro-joble...

We need to see an increase (not decreasing group) participation in snow sports in general if this industry is to get any stronger.

Junior said:

By "out there", do you mean out west or do you mean out there everywhere including the east?

I know a lot of people (and I'm sure you do too) in Colorado and Utah, as well as in Vermont and New Hampshire and Maine, who work for various ski resorts just for the pass and minimum wage (if that), and they're happy to do it. The ski industry needs more of those types if you ask me.

Maineskier69 said:

Hence the problem out there...

Junior said:

Yeah, saw the article. Everyone should read it.

Still, if I'm gonna be a poor ski bum and live off free granola bars and happy hour wings, I'd rather be doing that in The Rockies than in the Greens. Just sayin.....

Maineskier69 said:

It is an excellent article.

Here in New England we have it better than the big resorts out west.


MonkeyBrook said:

Happening at all resorts across the country.  

Powder Magazine, December 2015:  – Sheltered: The lack of affordable and available housing in ski towns is beyond a crisis—it’s an emergency.   I can't seem to pull the actual article but this was a really interesting read


Junior said:

Happening at every ski area in the northeast......

Lots of people have known this since back in the 80s and 90s, no one more so than Les Otten...he often talked about his biggest competition coming from outside the snowsports industry rather, i.e. cruise ships and Caribbean islands, then from within, i.e. other ski resorts.  Yet despite a lot of different initiatives intended to do just that, it stays flat (or even in decline). 

Wheelie said:

We need to see an increase (not decreasing group) participation in snow sports in general if this industry is to get any stronger.

I think it goes along with other sports like golf.  Time constraints and/or the need for instant gratification isn't satisfied by skiing.  I have 2 kids, one loves to ski, will ski all day, the other can't stand it - "it's boring!" I couldn't imagine as a 9 year old thinking skiing was boring...but when I was 9 there were no iPhones, XBOX's, 3d movie theaters, etc.
 
Zen Master said:

Lots of people have known this since back in the 80s and 90s, no one more so than Les Otten...he often talked about his biggest competition coming from outside the snowsports industry rather, i.e. cruise ships and Caribbean islands, then from within, i.e. other ski resorts.  Yet despite a lot of different initiatives intended to do just that, it stays flat (or even in decline). 

Wheelie said:

We need to see an increase (not decreasing group) participation in snow sports in general if this industry is to get any stronger.

I think the labor market has really tightened up and there are more non seasonal jobs available.  This has shrunk the pool for seasonal positions.  If you are young and trying to get started, I would think a full time year round position would be much more attractive than relatively low wage, non benefited and seasonal work.  Only the most devoted snowsports individuals may bite on resort jobs, and given what happened in 08/09 fresh in everyone's mind, may put a damper on chasing the ski bum life.

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