Have you ever pictured yourself in a career different to the everyday office gig? Maybe you’re seeking a career change and looking for something a bit more adventurous?
Planning your career path can be a headache, but maybe it doesn’t have to be; you’re chosen job role could actually involve an activity or hobby that you’re already passionate about. If we take a look at gamers, for example, there are jobs such as game quality testers or even professional e-sports. This same applies to extreme sports enthusiasts, there are a range of different jobs available to satisfy the hobby if you know where to look.
For those interested in winter sports, there is a wide range of different job options you could consider. In this article, we investigate how to gain a career in the snowsport industry.
Becoming an instructor
If your life is destined to up on the slopes and you have passion for either snowboarding or skiing, then you could potentially consider a job as a snowboard or ski instructor. There are academies all over the world offering instructor training courses, most of which will guarantee you a job upon completion.
There are courses available all year round, and available in many locations. They can be an average 4 – 6-week course, but there are some courses that last 23 weeks. They offer practical, hands-on experience, which allows you to learn ‘on the job’ with endless opportunities to practice on the slopes. There are tones of different course types to choose from, including an internship which you can see you spending an entire season in Niseko Mountain in Japan.
All the course requires you to have is a Japanese Working Holiday Visa, which any citizen between the age of 18-30 across Australia, Austria, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Republic of Korea, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Taiwan and the United Kingdom are eligible to apply for. If you live in Ireland the age bracket is 18 – 25. The course and exams are taught fully in English, but there are language course options available for speakers of other languages.
You can potentially earn between £760 – £1055 on average per month during your first season as an instructor in Austria.
Becoming a Winter Sports Journalists, Events Specialists or Marketing
If you have key passion for snow sports, it’s likely you’ll find yourself discussing it with like-minded people at every opportunity. Unfortunately, your technical knowledge of snow sports may very well sound like you’re speaking a foreign language to those not ‘in the know!
With that, you could consider a career based around events organisation, marketing or copywriting. After all, you’ll already be familiar with the subject matter and can offer your expert opinion on a range of snow sports-related topics. Of course, you’ll need the appropriate skills for the job, including any previous experience and qualifications. These roles offer plenty of room for progression too, so they’re ideal if you’re looking to kick start your career.
Winter sports Journalist can expect to earn an average of £40 – £120 per day, an event specialist can expect to earn £12.02 – £13.23 per hour and a Senior Marketing Executive role can see you earning between £28,000 – £32,000 per annum.
If you know the industry like the back of your hand and can talk about it endlessly than it would be a no brainer to consider working in skiing and snowboarding holiday sales. These roles are usually offered by holiday companies, or ski and snowboard centres in the UK. This type of job does require previous sales or marketing experience, but they usually offer fast progression to team leader or sales manager positions.
Though, you’re not working on the slopes, you can receive great perks such as free or discounted ski holidays. Alternatively, you could work in a resort shop, where you’ll have plenty of opportunities to share your expertise on a daily basis (whilst hitting the slopes in your free time)!
A salesperson can look at earning £18,000 per annum + commission according to Totaljob.
Becoming a park builder
Your role as park builder would involve you designing, building and maintaining the take-offs, landings and manmade features of the slope park, either in the UK or at the resort. Features in a park tend to include halfpipes, jumps, rails, tires, wall rides, quarter pipes, and many other creatively placed objects which skiers or snowboarders can use.
To succeed in the role, you’ll need to be creative making features fun but at the same time, safe to use. For example, take-offs need to be well-positioned, gaps need to be properly spaced, and landings need to be kept smooth, along with other responsibilities. All of this would be new to someone who was unfamiliar with skiing or snowboarding, but if you’re already familiar with the sport, you’ll have a great head start.
You can potentially earn between £7.60 per hour to £75,805 per year
Becoming a Ski or Snowboard rental technician
The role of a Ski or Snowboard rental technician requires to be able to service and repair skis and snowboards. You can work as a ski and snowboard technician in the UK or at a ski resort abroad. Working abroad gives you the opportunity to spend an entire season at one of your favourite resorts. Alternatively, there are ski slopes in the UK that are open all year round, so you if you’re working in a resort, you can apply for these roles to fill out the remainder of your year until the ski season starts again.
This job can see you earning $8.50 per hour.
Becoming a photographer
If you have a gift with a camera and have the relevant experience and qualification, you can potentially pursue a career as a freelance photographer or video producer. Getting a job in this field is tough as you’ll need to build up a portfolio of contacts and previous work. You can get started by reaching out to holiday companies, resorts, agencies, industry brands and athletes.
A freelance photographer can earn an average of £26.76 per hour, according to Indeed.
Becoming a designer
This role is similar to a photographer or video producer, you need relevant experience and qualifications for most design roles. Although this job won’t offer as much ski time as other positions on this list, the role provides ample opportunity for progression and you’ll be working alongside like-minded individuals who also have a keen interest in snow sports.
As a designer, you can expect to earn between £25,000 to £55,000 depending on the experience you have.
Catering jobs at a Ski Resort
If you work as a chef, bar or as kitchen staff at a ski resort, then there’s plenty of opportunities to spend your free time between shifts on the slopes. These roles are usually seasonal, but there’s plenty of progression opportunities for the right person.
A head chef could be looking to earn an average of £25,000 to £28,000, while managers could look at earning £35,000.
Become a manager, administrator & Co-ordinators or ski resort rep
As a ski resort rep, you’ll be the face of the company within the resort. This role can be highly pressured, as it’s your responsibility to make sure all guests are happy and resolve any issues that may arise. Despite this, these roles are generally well paid and allow for plenty of time on the slopes.
A travel consultant can look at earning between £24,000 – £26,000.
The jobs outlined above, are just a hand selection out of the many more exciting opportunities out there, within the skiing and snow sports industry. There are plenty of opportunities available but it’s always best to do your research before applying. If you’re looking for a career change, or simply wanting to make a living out of your passion, these roles can offer you an exciting and rewarding career on the slopes!