FAQ’s: Ski/Board Hire, Lessons, Lift Passes & Transfers

I receive a lot of Bansko questions relating to lift passes, ski and snowboard hire, ski school, private lessons and transfers. Please read these FAQ’s first — then, if your question is not answered, then feel free to contact us. Much appreciated, thank you.

  • Please read these FAQ’s before sending me your question. Thank you.
  • Watch this short video on how to complete the online booking form

Where are the cheapest discounted lift passes, ski hire, lessons and transfer pricing?
Click here to go straight to the discounted  pricing and booking tool. These are the lowest prices and supersede all other prices. Or click on any of the colourful writing (like you see below) and you’ll notice in several places throughout banskoblog.com

Or go to Bansko App and click on Booking icon (bottom left).
Why do I have to use the pricing and booking tool?
  • It’s efficient, saves time, ensures accuracy and it’s how we keep the prices so low since 2008/2009 ski season
  • The most up to date pricing for the many variations of orders are always up to date in the form.
  • The pricing and booking tool captures the names of each person in your group.
  • You can save your booking and then go back to it when you have all the requirements from the members of your group.
I have not received an email confirming my booking?
  • Yes, you almost definitely have! Please check spam your mail first. Look for orders@banskoblog.com.
  • Add email:  orders @ banskoblog.com to you contacts.

May I store my skis and boots overnight in the ski shop?

  • Yes, you may store your ski or snowboard boots (and even your own boots), your hire. skis/snow boards and poles.
  • Storage is free.
  • Boot drying is free

May I swap skis or boots during the rental period?

  • Yes, this service is free of charge

What are advanced skis and snowboards?

  • These are skis for intermediates skiers upwards.
  • They are stiffer and more responsive.
  • The advanced range includes freestyle twin tip skis.
  • You need advanced skis to really learn how to carve (for skiing) well.
  • We have twin tipped snowboards, select advanced snowboards.
  • Advanced boots are from Lange. Almost all are new.
  • Advanced skis from the 2017 range from Rossignol, Head (SLX AND GLX), and Dynastar (and others)

Where is your ski & snowboard shop in Bansko?

  • BanskoBlog partners exclusively with SkiMania. It’s a large shop by the main traffic lights.
  • 92 Pirin Street, Bansko.
  • 50 metres from gondola building entrance. You can’t miss them. Map on ski packages page. Map in booking notes.

  Am I safe paying online?

  • We use PayPal. The worlds most biggest and most respected online independent payment system.
  • Our privacy policy is that we never store your credit card details. Your order is processed entirely within PayPal.

  Do I need a PayPal account?

  • No, you do not need a PayPal account
  • Follow the instruction on the payment request when completing the form
  • PayPal accepts most Visa and Mastercard credit and debit cards and American Express.
  • Choose to pay in €EUR or £UK at check out.

  What is your Privacy Policy?

  • Privacy Policy: we do not store credit card details; nor do we share, sell or rent customer details with any third parties

What is The Happiness Guarantee?

  • Applies to lessons from our partners, skimania.
  • If you are not genuinely not happy with your ski/board instructor, then tell the manager the same day, and you will receive another like for like lesson for FREE.
  • You can change your skis and boots to another model of the same price brand, or lower price band, as many times as you wish
  • If cancellation is due to airline flight cancellation, leading you to cancel your holiday, then 100% refund. You must advise us before day of hire/lessons
  • If pregnancy prevents you from traveling to Bansko you receive a 95% refund of monies paid for ski/snowboard hire and lessons
  • We are unable to refund monies paid for lift passes either before travel or for any unused portion of the lift pass
  • Happiness guarantee does not offer a cash refund.

What if I have a problem with the online booking form? 

What ski and snowboard brands do you stock?

  • All hire equipment is manufactured by recognised brands such as Head, Rossignol, Salomon, Volkl, Atomic, Burton, Fischer. All are premier brands.

  Do the ski instructors speak my language?

  • All ski instructors speak English, Russian and Bulgarian.  Some speak Greek and French too (notify us in advance please)

  At what time do lessons start and end?

  • Morning:         11:00 -13:00  Afternoon:      14:00-16:00    Both for 2 hours each session.
  • 2 hours is half day
  • 4 hours is full day

  At what time do private lessons start?

  • Morning:         09:00-11:00     Afternoon:      only outside peak season 12th Jan to 7th Feb and 5th March to season end
  • 2 hours is half day
  • 4 hours is full day

Where do we meet for lessons?

  • At Banderishka Poliana by the big PISTE MAP;  i.e. at the top of the gondola lift walk straight ahead.
  • Skimania will point this location out to you in the shop

Are all your ski instructors properly qualified?

Bansko ski hire prices

  • Yes, all instructors are ISIA qualified.

When do I receive my booking reference number?

  • Check your email — and your spam folder for an email from orders at banskoblog.com
  • Your reference number is inserted into your booking form and sent to you immediately after your order is placed. Please print this out and take to Skimania
  • Your transfer booking contact and telephone number are sent to you at least seven days before departure.

Cancellation policy

  • If cancellation is due to airline flight failure (insolvency) leading you to cancel your holiday then 98% refund is due
  • Lessons and hire. 80% refunded up to 7 days before start. No refund within 7 days.
  • Lift passes. 50% refunded up to 14 days before start. No refund within 14 days
  • Cancellations to be notified by email before hire date.
  • We refund monies within seven working days of receipt of your email. We will confirm receipt of your email within two working days.
  • We are unable to refund for missed planes, visa issues, illness or any other reason.

Lesson cancellation policy

  • If you miss or cancel your lesson time allocated, you are not due a refund.
  • If you miss a lesson due to injury, you are not due a refund
  • If you need to change your time of lessons, skimania are under no obligation to do this and you may lose your payment.

Lift closure

  • If lifts are closed fully, or partially, there is no refund. Please be insured for such situations. 

Who are we?

  • Lance Nelson owns BanskoBlog. For more him go to http://banskoblog.com/about.
  • Since 1998 years Lance Nelson has been providing trusted and respected information on banskoblog.com.
  • Bansko Blog: 23,000+ readers in ski season per month.
  • Bansko Blog 180,000+ individuals visit the blog and app every per year
  • Bansko Blog: 1,000,000+ page views per year.
  • Bansko Blog App (it’s free) for iphone, ipad and ipod touch and Android 34,000+downloads since launch
  • Lonely Planet blog contributor
  • App Factory Ltd
  • Bulgaria Now Podcast http://bulgarianow.bg

Who provides the ski and snowboard hire and lessons?

  • SkiMania. They have been trading for eleven years. Your contract for hire and lessons is with them.

How do I book my ski/snowboard hire & lessons?

  • Follow the instructions on banskoblog.com: Ski Packages and complete online form
  • Register for newsletter on banskoblog.com for more info on Bansko including free guide.
  • Complete the form with what you need, make payment via paypal credit/debit card. VISA & MASTERCARD cards accepted.
  • Within 48 hours you will receive payment confirmation and reference number/voucher in four days.

How do I book my lift pass?

  • Follow the instructions on banskoblog.com: Ski Packages
  • Use online form as for the ski hire | lessons and transfers
  • Click submit online
  • 6, 9 and 13 day lift passes only
I need a lift pass for 7, 8 days or 10, 11 ,12 days?
  • Book the relevant 6, 9 and 13 days pass and on your final valid day of you pass buy a pass at the gondola lift
I need a lift pass for <6days can I buy these at the gondola lift station?
  • Yes buy 1,2,3,4 and 5 day lift passes at the gondola lift.

  I have an Excel booking form, is this valid?

  • No, only the online booking form is valid.

Do the lift passes include piste insurance?

  • Yes they do, but it is essential you take out adequate ski holiday insurance
  • Off piste skiing and snowboarding are often excluded on policies. Read the terms carefully
  • NOTE: The gondola medical centre will charge you for xrays and certain treatments. These ar enot covered by

Do I need medical insurance in Bulgaria?

  • Yes, it is required by law

How do I book my ski package?

  • Go to the ski packages page on banskoblog.com for the online form
  • Add orders st banskoblog.com to your contacts to ensure email does not go to spam

Can I book using a manually system to complete?

  • No, please complete the online form.

How do I pay for my ski and snowboard packages?

  • via most debit and credit cards, via PayPal. It’s secure, quick and easy.
  • Call by telephone +359(0)892 348600 with your credit / debit card details and your order will be processed via PayPal terminal.
  • Euros accepted

Why use PayPal?

  • There are many reasons why people prefer using PayPal, but here are the top ones:
  • It’s safer:  When you pay with PayPal your financial details are never shared with sellers or retailers, so you’re more protected against fraud. Learn more about online security with PayPal. Check out the PayPal.com Safety Advice Centre.
  • It’s faster:  Because you don’t have to type in your card details each time you pay, you can check out faster online. You can also get eBay items delivered more quickly, as you can pay the seller instantly.
  • It’s easier:  PayPal is the preferred web payment method because it’s simply a smarter, way to pay online. All you need is your email address and a password to pay in just a few clicks.

I am a beginner. How many lessons should I book with you?

  • It depends on your fitness. If you are reasonably active and fit, you should book full day lessons for first 3 days and half day lessons thereafter.
  • If you are not so active normally then consider a half day lesson to start with then a few full day lessons.
  • Remember you are on holiday. Make time for a spa, a swim and ice skate and a few nights out. Bansko has plenty to offer the new skiier/snowboarder

How much is a private instructor for two people (or three or four) people?

  • there are lessons for private 1 to 1 (totally private) and 1 to 2. One (instructor) to two person lessons make a cheaper alternative
  • family and friends lessons are perfect for when you just all want to be together. You must either all ski or all snowboard.
What is the difference between Private 1 to 1, Private 1 to 2 and Individual Group Lessons?
  • Private lessons 1 (instructor) to 2 (pupils) means there are 2 persons sharing the same instructor so there could be another person unconnected person who joins the class.
  • Private lesson means only you and the instructor
  • Individual Group Lesson is your group of friends and/or family and on instructor. Each person pays and there are a minimum of three persons in a group.
Should my child ski or snowboard?
  • Children under 10, in general, should start skiing first rather than snowboarding.

Should my child have private or group lessons?

  • Children from aged 6 should have group lessons. They are great fun. Children under 6 either should attend that kindergarten (book on arrival with Ulen in gondola) or a private lesson (not available New Year or February holidays). They must be aged 5+.

What age can my child learn to ski?

  • We suggest children from 6 years can learn to ski in groups
Is there a Kindergarten?
  • Yes, pay at the gondola. Your child should receive up to 2 hours ski play and the rest of the time inside, games etc.
  • Hours from 09:30 to 16:00
  • Located at Banderishka Poliana
  • Ski boots and skis included. Buy just a child gondola lift pass, not a full ski pass.

Do you rent helmets?

  • Children have free helmet hire.
  • Adult helmets available for hire
  • Special ladies models available at no extra charge
  • To purchase a helmet, try ebay for good deals. Check out top brands like Giro. POC etc. Go for your best fit.
Do you rent ski blades?
  • Yes, the price is same as standard skis. Please indicate in comments that blades are required

When is the latest I can book before my hire/lessons?

  • This is a prepay offer and is available up to three working days before day of hire / lessons / lift pass.
  • Hire / lessons / lift pass / transfer are confirmed after payment is received

What happens if I lose or damage hire equipment?

  • You are responsible in case of loss of skis.
  • Standard skis/snowboard  replacement fee in 500 BGN
  • Advanced skis replacement fee is 1,200 BGN
  • Please take out travel of general insurance that covers ski theft.
  • Option for insurance on booking form
  • SkiMania will mend or repair broken or damaged items for an “at cost” fee.

I would like hire and lessons for periods longer than 14 days

  • contact orders at banskoblog dot com for a quote

How do I recognise my transfer driver at the airport?

  • You will be sent all details 7 days before travelling including transfer telephone hotline number
  • You driver will hold a card with the lead booking name written upon it
  • You must have received confirmation from transfer company prior to departure.

When do I pay the driver?

  • Pay your driver in full, for the return transfer too, on arrival in the resort

Are  your transfer partner companies vehicles fully licenced and insured?

  • Yes.
What currencies will the driver accept?
  • Your driver will accept UK pounds (issued by Bank of England) notes only please
  • Euros
  • BGN levs
What conversion rate will be used if I wish to pay by € or Levs?
  • The mid rate as per App and website, www.xe.com applicable on the day (or last working day)

Can I have my transfer from Sofia city (rather than the airport)?

  • Yes, please specify pick up time and hotel/apartment and address

Can I join a shuttle transfer from the airport?

  • Yes, in Bansko App (Android and iOS devices) – €19.95 per person, one way. No extra charges whatsoever.

Can I have my transfer from Plovdiv?

  • Yes, please go to the online booking form

Can I have a transfer from Thessaloniki?

  • Yes, costs a little more, but email for a quote; or go to Bansko App to book this.

What sized vehicle do I need for my transfer?

  • The online booking form requests number of bags (including boots and hand luggage), skis/snowboards.
  • Carriage of check in bags for four or five people requires a larger vehicle.
  • Larger vehicle also required if skis and snowboards being brought.
  • Check in baggage also mean a larger vehicle will be required if you are at the maximum for that vehicle.
  • We check all orders and will advise if you need a larger vehicle.

How much time should I allow to get to the airport / to Bansko?

  • Allow 2 hours 30 minutes hours each way.
  • If weather conditions are really poor, then we advise longer.
  • Journey time early morning or late evening is 2 hours 20 minutes (without stopping).
  • It is 170 km each way
What makes a private transfer different from the shuttle transfer?
  • A private transfer takes the prearranged people direct to you destination. A Shuttle may wait for another flight landing to fill up
  • On return, a private transfer picks only you up and takes you direct to the airport.
  • Shuttle service may take up to 30 minutes travelling around Bansko to other hotels/apartments to pick up other people
  • Shuttle service may require a wait for another incoming flight — but no longer than one hour
  • A private transfer leaves at set time and will typically get you at the airport at least 2.5 hours before flights take off; a private transfer leaves at a time that suits you and therefore means less waiting time in airport. Or more time in bed!
How much does fuel cost in Bulgaria?
  • About the same price as elsewhere in western Europe.
Should I tip my instructor / transfer driver?
  • Yes tipping is much appreciated (salaries in Bulgaria are the low compared to the rest of the EU)
  • tip 5% approx if you are happy with the service
  • tip 10% approx if you are very happy with the service
Can I hire a car in Bansko?
  • Yes you can. Go to Bansko App. Weekly all inclusive rates from €100. Contact orders@banskoblog.com for details
What are your terms and conditions?

Terms and Conditions Subject To Change Without Notice. We can take no responsibility for the information included here.