by Ray Piwowarczyk - (posted on 05/21/20)
Ikon Pass holders whose seasons were cut short
Alterra Mountain Co. discounts renewals for Ikon Pass holders whose seasons were cut short By Ed Sealover – Senior Reporter, Denver Business Journal Alterra Mountain Co. on Tuesday offered renewal discounts of as much as $200 on its Ikon passes following this year’s coronavirus-abbreviated season, making an effort to reach skiers who are seeking some sort of discounts after resorts shut down statewide one month ago. The Denver-headquartered company, which owns 15 resorts across the U.S. and Canada and offers access to 41 destinations on its pass, announced it would double its standing renewal discount for existing Ikon Pass holders and extend their window to renew at special rates for next season from April 22 to May 26. Thus, holders of the standard $999 Ikon Pass can get $200 off for renewal and skiers with the more limited $699 Ikon Base Pass can get $100 back. Passholders who already renewed also are entitled to the additional breaks and will be contacted by the company, officials said. Both Alterra and its chief rival for season-pass customers, Broomfield-based Vail Resorts (NYSE: MTN) announced on March 14 that they were shutting all of their North American resorts — a cumulative total of 49 of them — temporarily, but quickly ended their seasons altogether. The decisions aided public efforts to limit contact between strangers and slow the spread of coronavirus, but they also took away one to two months of skiing for regulars who made significant investments in the passes and, in many cases, were facing job losses themselves. Alterra’s move represents what is expected to be just the first such outreach to the shorted pass holders, as Vail CEO Rob Katz said in announcing furloughs for hourly workers on April 1 that the company was looking at ways beyond its deferral of auto-renewal charges to compensate pass-holders. Katz has faced some criticism for not announcing refunds or other measures sooner, and a Facebook group named “Make Ikon Pass Holders Happy Again” had grown to 1,443 members before Tuesday’s announcement. “These are the days when we are particularly grateful for all those in the Ikon Pass community who share our passion and enthusiasm for winter, and we want to acknowledge our appreciation and gratitude by doubling 20/21 renewal discounts and offering some of the lowest prices since we launched Ikon Pass,” said Erik Forsell, Alterra chief marketing officer, in a news release. “The Ikon Pass and its 41 global destinations has always been about adventure, and during these challenging times, we hope to enable and inspire loyal and new Ikon Pass holders to look forward and plan their next adventure with us.”