Frequently Asked Questions

Falls Creek and Hotham Australia will be Epic*

*Subject to closing and approvals

Frequently Asked Questions

Falls Creek and Hotham Australia Aquisition

 

Please note: all information regarding access and benefits for Falls Creek and Hotham resorts is subject to transaction close and certain approvals.

 

What are the details of this acquisition?

Vail Resorts announced that it has entered into an agreement to purchase Falls Creek and Hotham resorts in Victoria, Australia. The Company will purchase Australian Alpine Enterprises Holdings Pty. Ltd and all related corporate entities that operate Falls Creek and Hotham resorts from Living and Leisure Australia Group (LLA) for a purchase price of approximately AU$174 million, subject to certain adjustments related to the timing of closing. The acquisition includes ski school, retail/rental, and reservation and property management operations at both resort areas.

 

When is the acquisition expected to close?

The acquisition, which is subject to certain approvals, is expected to close prior to the commencement of the Australian snow season in June 2019.

 

Where is Falls Creek?

Victoria’s largest alpine resort, Falls Creek, features 450 hectares of terrain and is only 4 hours from Melbourne. With more than 90 runs accessed by 14 lifts, there is a huge variety of terrain including fantastic beginner and intermediate trails that are well suited to families and first-timers. For advanced skiers and riders, the Summit is packed with steep black runs and is the launching pad for the deep powder stashes and tree runs of the Maze.  The resort provides a variety of different lodging properties alongside great restaurants, bars, and nightlife.

 

Where is Hotham?

Hotham is nestled amongst the Victorian Alps of the Great Dividing Range, only 4.5 hours from Melbourne. Famous for its off-piste skiing and riding, Hotham is one of the few resorts in Australia that has access to true side-country terrain, some of which is above tree line. The resort boasts spectacular views, its own airport and 320 hectares of ski terrain. Considered the 'Powder Capital' of Australia, Hotham is the only resort in the Southern Hemisphere where the village is located on top of the mountain, ensuring endless awe-inspiring views and ski-in, ski-out opportunities from anywhere in the village. With 13 chairlifts, 3 terrain parks and 35km of cross country skiing, Hotham has something for everyone, including off-mountain activities like tobogganing, snowmobile rides, luxurious day spas and 18 restaurants to choose from.

 

Which passes will provide access to skiing and riding at Falls Creek, Hotham and Perisher in 2019?

When the transaction closes, the 2019 Epic Australia Pass™, the 2019 Epic Australia Plus Pass, the 2018-19 Epic Pass™ and the 2018-19 Military Epic Pass™ will include unlimited, unrestricted access to both Perisher and Falls Creek and is also expected to include unlimited, unrestricted access to Hotham, subject to certain approvals.     

 

  • 2019 Epic Australia Pass™: The best value season pass for Australians offering year-round skiing and snowboarding at world-class resorts in the U.S., Canada and Japan, plus local access at Perisher, Falls Creek and Hotham.  For AU$839, get unlimited, unrestricted access to Perisher, Falls Creek and Hotham during the 2019 season; five consecutive days with no blackout dates at Rusutsu, Japan for the 2019–20 snow season; five consecutive days with no blackout dates at Hakuba Valley, Japan for the 2019-20 snow season; 10 days combined at Whistler Blackcomb, Vail and Beaver Creek in the 2019-2020 snow season (days do not have to be consecutive). The Epic Australia pass also provides unlimited access to Breckenridge, Crested Butte and Keystone in Colorado; Park City in Utah; Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood in Lake Tahoe, California; Stowe and Okemo in Vermont; Mount Sunapee in New Hampshire; and Stevens Pass in Washington State in the 2019-20 snow season. North American resort access (with the exception of Crested Butte, Okemo, Sunapee and Stevens pass) is subject to certain holiday restrictions (29/11/19 – 30/11/19; 19/12/19 – 31/12/19; 18/1/20; 15/2/20 – 16/2/20; 7/3/20; 14/3/20; 21/3/20). On sale now.  To buy your pass, click here http://epicaustraliapass.com.au or visit the Perisher ticket office.

 

  • 2019 Epic Australia Plus Pass: Pass holders can elevate their skiing and snowboarding experience by upgrading the Epic Australia Pass™ to avoid holiday restrictions in the best resorts in the U.S. & Canada for unlimited, unrestricted North American access to Whistler Blackcomb, Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Park City, and more for the 2019-20 snow season. On sale now. To buy your pass, click here http://epicaustraliapass.com.au or visit the Perisher ticket office.

 

  • 2018-19 Epic Pass™:Epic Pass holders will receive unlimited, unrestricted skiing or snowboarding with no restrictions to Perisher, Hotham, and Falls Creek during the 2019 snow season, pending close of the acquisition and subject to certain approvals. In addition, The Epic Pass offers world-class access including unlimited, unrestricted skiing and riding at Vail, Beaver Creek, Whistler Blackcomb, Breckenridge, Park City, Keystone, Crested Butte, Heavenly, Northstar, Kirkwood, Stowe, Okemo, Mount Sunapee, Wilmot, Afton Alps, Mt. Brighton, and limited day access to several resort partners, including Telluride, Resorts of the Canadian Rockies, Hakuba Valley in Japan, and several European partners. For full partner access on the pass, please visit www.epicpass.com.The 2018-19 Epic Pass™ is no longer on sale but the 2019-20 Epic Pass™ will go on sale in March 2019 on epicpass.com in US dollars will be valid in the U.S., Whistler Blackcomb, and Japan for the 2019/20 snow season and give guests access to Perisher, Hotham, and Falls Creek during the 2020 Australian snow season.  

     

  • 2018-19 Military Epic Pass: The Military Epic Pass™ offers active and retired members of the US, Australian, and Canadian forces with unlimited, unrestricted skiing for the 2019 snow season to Perisher, Falls Creek, and Hotham in Australia, pending close of acquisition and subject to certain approvals.   The Military Epic Pass™ also offers unlimited, unrestricted access to our other 17 owned & operated resorts, including Vail, Beaver Creek, Whistler Blackcomb, Breckenridge, Park City, Keystone, Crested Butte, Heavenly, Northstar, Kirkwood, Stowe, Okemo, Mount Sunapee, Stevens Pass, Wilmot, Afton Alps, and Mt. Brighton. This pass is no longer on sale but the 2019-20 snow season passes will go on sale in March 2019 on http://www.epicpass.com in US dollars. The 2019-20 passes will be valid in the U.S. and at Whistler Blackcomb in Canada for the 2019/20 snow season and give guests access to Perisher, Falls Creek and Hotham during the 2020 Australian winter snow season. Military Epic Pass™ does not include access to any Vail Resorts partners such as Telluride, Hakuba, Rusutsu, Fernie Alpine Resort, Kicking Horse Mountain Resort, Kimberley Alpine Resort, Nakiska, Mont Sainte Anne, Stoneham or any of our 30 European partners.

 

 

Hero Pass Details

Will my 2019 Hero Pass still be valid for this season?

Yes, Vail Resorts will continue to honour 2019 Hero pass products for both Falls Creek and Hotham with existing Hero access.

 

Will my 2019 Hero Pass also have access to Perisher?

No, the 2019 Hero pass offers unlimited access to both Falls Creek and Hotham resorts but will not include access to ski or ride at Perisher. 

 

Is there a cancellation policy for the 2019 Hero Pass?

No, your 2019 Hero Pass deposit or purchase may not be cancelled. The Hero Pass is non-refundable and non-transferable. Pass Protection is available to purchase at the time of purchase. If you would like to convert your Hero Pass to the Epic Australia Pass™ following transaction close and approvals, you will be able to do so. (Details to be announced upon close.)  

Are the skier age categories for the 2019 Hero Pass still the same?

Yes, the 2019 Hero Pass skier age categories are still as follows: Adults 19 – 64, Children 6-18 and Seniors 65 -69 (Ages 5 and under and 70+ are free).

I already purchased a 2019 Hero Pass can I convert it to a 2019 Epic Australia Pass™?

Yes, following transaction close and regulatory approval, you will be directed to an Epic Australia Pass™ specialist who can assist you in converting your 2019 Hero pass to a 2019 Epic Australia Pass™? (Details to be announced upon close.)  

 

I paid for Pass Protection for the 2019 Hero Pass but now I want to convert my pass to an Epic Australia Pass™, will the Pass Protection be applied to the Epic Australia Pass™ and will I get a refund for the difference?

More information on pass conversion will be available following the close of the transaction, which is expected prior to the commencement of the Australian snow season in June 2019.

 

I paid the $99 deposit for the 2019 Hero Pass but now I want to convert to an Epic Australia Pass™, will you apply the Hero Pass deposit to the Epic Australia Pass™?

More information on pass conversion will be available following the close of the transaction, which is expected prior to the commencement of the Australian snow season in June 2019.

 

If I convert my 2019 Hero Pass to an Epic Australia Pass™, do I still get my Hero Pass Benefits?

No, Hero Pass benefits are for Hero Pass holders only.  With the Epic Australia Pass™ you will have access to a wide range of discounts and special benefits at Perisher, The Best of the US and Whistler Blackcomb for a complete list of benefits please visit, www.epicaustraliapass.com.au/benefits

 

Epic Australia Pass™ & Epic Pass™ Details

If I plan to ski Falls Creek or Hotham on an Epic Australia Pass™ or an Epic Pass™ can I go straight to the lift?

Exact details on pass card requirements will be released after the close of the acquisition.

 

If I plan to ski Falls Creek or Hotham on an Epic Australia Pass™ do I need to purchase Vehicle Resort Entry?

Yes, all vehicles stopping in a Victorian Alpine Resort must have a valid authorised resort entry permit.  You can purchase single day, multi-day or season pass resort entry permits at: Falls Creek: https://www.skifalls.com.au/plan-your-trip/resort-entry/resort-entry-permits Hotham:

https://mthotham.alpineeasyaccess.com.au/  More information on Resort Entry can be found at https://www.mthotham.com.au/discover/explore/getting-here/resort-entry

 

Will night skiing and riding at Falls Creek cost extra?

No, pending completion of the acquisition and subject to regulatory approval, night skiing for 2019 is included at Falls Creek for free on the 2019 Epic Australia Pass™, 2018-19 Epic Pass™, and 2018-19 Military Epic Pass™.

 

If I have an Epic Australia Pass™ will I also get Hero Pass benefits now?

No, Hero Pass benefits are offered to Hero Pass holders only.  For a complete list of Epic Australia Pass™ benefits please visit www.epicaustraliapass.com.au/benefits

 

Can I use my Bring a Mate discounted tickets at Falls Creek and Hotham?

More information on pass holder benefits at Falls Creek and Hotham resorts will be available following the close of the transaction, which is expected prior to the commencement of the Australian snow season in June 2019.

 

Are the skier age categories for the 2019 Epic Australia Pass™ still the same?

Yes, the 2019 Epic Australia Pass™ skier age categories are still as follows: Adults 15-64, Students age 5 – up to year 12 at school and Seniors 65+ (Ages 4 and under are free).

 

Perisher benefits For Epic Australia Pass™ Holders include:

  • 6 Bring a Mate discount invitations: Guests will receive 6 invites for discounted, 1 day lift tickets to share with your mates and when they buy online in advance, they can save up to 50%. Use your Epic Australia Pass™ to help them lock in a great discount.
  • Up to 25% off lessons: Save up to 25% on lessons when purchased online, in advance.
  • 15% off equipment hire: Book your ski and board hire online, in advance and save up to 15%.
  • Up to 15% off at Perisher owned food and beverage outlets: Enjoy benefits every time you visit a Perisher food and beverage outlet with your Epic Australia Pass™. Participating outlets include the Blue Cow Bistro, Cowpuccino, Ski Rock Café, Curve Bar, Jax Bar & Grill, Bazils, Powder Inn, The Burning Log, Snow Gums Restaurant, and all food and beverage outlets at The Station.
  • Up to 15% off at Slopestyle Mountain Sports: Make great savings on the top brands at Slopestyle Mountain Sports outlets including the Slopestyle Demo Centre where you can try the latest skis and snowboards,
  • Free access to First Tracks: Enjoy free access to fresh corduroy or powder runs from 7.30am on the Ridge Quad Chairlift at Blue Cow every Sunday during July and August before the slopes open. Epic Australia Pass™ holders can register to join First Tracks each week during winter.
  • 15% off accommodation at The Station: Lock in your holiday at The Station and save 15% on your booking. 

 

Best of the U.S. benefits For Epic Australia Pass™ Holders include:

  • 20% off at Vail Resorts owned accommodation: Enjoy 20% off the best available rate at Vail Resorts’ owned accommodation across the U.S. resorts
  • 10% off at Epic Mountain Express: Enjoy 10% off shared ride shuttles, private vans and SUVs to/from Vail Resorts’ Colorado destinations
  • 15% off at Vail Resorts owned food and beverage outlets: Enjoy 15% off at on-mountain restaurants after 2pm
  • 20% off equipment hire: Book your ski and board hire online, in advance and save up to 20% through www.rentskis.com

 

Whistler Blackcomb for Epic Australia Pass™ Holders benefits include:

  • 10% off at Vail Resorts owned food and beverage outlets: Enjoy 10% off at on-mountain restaurants after 2pm
  • 20% off equipment hire: Book your ski and board hire online, in advance and save up to 20% through www.rentskis.com

 

Skiing at Perisher

Can I add Skitube access to my Epic Australia Pass™?

Skitube is the safest and most convenient way to Perisher. Add Skitube to your Epic Australia Pass™ for only $105 for Adults/Seniors and $59 for Students.  For more information on the Skitube please visit https://www.perisher.com.au/plan-your-trip/new-to-perisher/skitube

 

When is the Perisher Snow Season?

Perisher 2019 snow season dates are Saturday June 8th – Monday October 7th. Dates are subject to change.  

 

Are Perisher’s capital investments complete for the 2019 snow season?

In time for the 2019 snow season, Epic Australia Pass™ holders can look forward to AU$4.2 million of capital investments into Perisher, including the new Leichhardt Quad Chairlift and a significant snowmaking project from the bottom of the Happy Valley T-Bar through the load of the new quad chairlift. This new chairlift will increase lift capacity by 75% in one of Perisher's most popular areas and will access fantastic beginner, intermediate and advanced runs as well as the famous Leichhardt Terrain Park. The new snowmaking project will link Happy Valley to the base of this new chairlift and will ensure that terrain in this part of the resort can be opened earlier, providing great conditions all winter.

 

Skiing at the Best of the U.S., Canada & Japan

How do I use my Epic Australia Pass™ at Vail Resorts owned and operated destinations in the U.S. and Canada?

  • Simply follow these three easy steps to redeem your pass/hard card media:
  1. Visit a season pass office in any of Vail Resorts’ owned and operated destinations
  2. Show valid ID that states your name and date of birth (this could include your Passport or Driver’s License)
  3. Sign a release form, have your photo taken and hit the slopes!
  • Please note: The 2018 Epic Australia Pass™ will be valid at Vail Resorts’ US and Canadian resorts for the 2018-19 North American snow season. The 2019 Epic Australia Pass™ will be valid at Vail Resorts US and Canadian resorts for the 2019-20 North American snow season.

 

How do I get access to ski or snowboard at Hakuba Valley or Rusutsu Resort in 2019-2020 snow season once I have purchased my Epic Pass™ or Epic Australia Pass™?

2019-20 Epic Pass™ holders and/or 2019 Epic Australia Pass™ holders are required to present their valid Epic Pass™ or Epic Australia Pass™ hard card and a valid photo ID to the lift cashier at Hakuba Valley and/or Rusutsu Resort to redeem their five-day lift ticket at each Japanese resort.

 

Where is Hakuba Valley in Japan and how many days of skiing do Epic Pass™ and Epic Australia Pass™ holders get?

Hakuba Valley is one of Japan's largest and most renowned mountain resorts located in the northern part of the Nagano Prefecture at the base of the country's Northern Alps. Epic Pass™ and Epic Australia Pass™ holders will receive five consecutive days of skiing or snowboarding at Hakuba Valley with no blackout dates. The 2018-19 Epic Pass™ and the 2018 Epic Australia Pass™ have access to Hakuba Valley in the 2018-19 Japan snow season.  The 2019-20 Epic Pass™ and the 2019 Epic Australia Pass™ have access to Hakuba Valley in the 2019-20 Japan snow season.  Military Epic Pass does not include access to Hakuba Valley or Rusutsu in Japan.

 

Where is Rusutsu Resort in Japan and how many days of skiing do Epic Pass™ and Epic Australia Pass™ holders get?

Rusutsu Resort is located in Hokkaido, Japan, just 90 minutes from Sapporo and New Chitose Airport. Epic Pass™ and Epic Australia Pass™ holders will receive five consecutive days of skiing or snowboarding at Rusutsu Resort with no blackout dates. Rusutsu benefits start with the beginning of the 2019-20 snow season.

The 2019-20 Epic Pass™ and the 2019 Epic Australia Pass™ have access to Hakuba Valley in the 2019-20 Japan snow season.  Military Epic Pass does not include access to Hakuba Valley or Rusutsu in Japan.

 

What if I want to ski more than five days at Rusutsu or Hakuba Valley Resorts?

2019 Epic Australia Pass™ holders who wish to ski more than 5 days receive 50% off of lift tickets to Rusutsu or Hakuba Valley Resorts for any additional days beyond the allotted 5 days in the 2019-2020 season.

 

What if I buy a 2019 Epic Australia Pass™ and want to ski or ride on one or two of the restricted dates at a Best of the U.S., Canada or Japan resort on my Epic Australia Pass™?

2019 Epic Australia Pass™ holders can purchase a lift ticket on a restricted date at a U.S. resort for 50% off the daily rate. Alternatively, the 2019 Epic Australia Pass upgrade and 2019-20 Epic Pass™ provide unlimited access on these dates. If your intended ski and ride dates are on three or more of the restricted holiday dates, we suggest that you upgrade your 2019 Epic Australia Pass™ during checkout in order to secure 2019 Perisher, Hotham, and Falls Creek skiing (pending close of acquisition) as well as unrestricted access to North American resorts.

 

When is the snow season in the U.S., Canada and Japan?

The snow season in the Northern Hemisphere generally operates from November through to April. The 2019 Epic Australia Pass™ will provide access to Whistler Blackcomb, the Best of the U.S. Rusutsu, Japan and Hakuba Valley, Japan from November 2019 until May 2020. With Keystone’s plan to be the first resort open in the U.S. and Breckenridge planning to stay open until Memorial Day in May, the two Summit County resorts will offer one of the longest snow seasons in the U.S. Specific opening and closing dates will be published on each resort's website closer to the date.

 

What dates do 2019 “holiday restrictions” include?

Access to Perisher, Falls Creek and Hotham (Falls Creek and Hotham access subject to transaction close and regulatory approval) is unlimited and unrestricted. Lift access is restricted during the following periods at North American resorts, with the exception of Crested Butte, Mount Sunapee, Okemo and Stevens Pass. To remove holiday restrictions, consider upgrading to Epic Australia Plus. Holiday restrictions include: 29 - 30 November 2019; 19 - 31 December 2019; 18 January 2020; 15 - 16 February 2020; 7, 14, 21 March 2020

 

Pass Refund Protection

If I purchase a 2019 Epic Australia Pass™ can I purchase Pass Refund Protection?

Yes, Pass Refund Protection is offered to cover your season pass purchase when the unexpected happens for only $25 for Adults, $15 for Students and $20 Seniors. The 2019 Epic Australia Pass™ is a non-cancellable, non-refundable purchase, except as provided in our Terms and Conditions. For more information on Pass Refund Protection, click https://www.epicaustraliapass.com.au/passes/pass-refund-protection

 

How does Pass Refund Protection work?

If You Accept:

  • Pre-Season Pass Cancellations: For incidents that occur prior to the start of the ski season, Vail Resorts will reimburse the full cost of your season pass if you’re unable to use it for the entire season, due to a covered reason.
  • Season Interruption Reimbursements (pro-rated): For incidents that occur after the ski season begins, we will reimburse the cost of the pass minus a daily usage fee (AU$107 for Adults, AU$65 for Students and AU$77 for Seniors) for every day used up to the face value of the season pass if you are no longer able to use the season pass due to a covered reason

If You Decline:

  • Refund Ineligible: If you do not accept Pass Refund Protection, you will not be eligible for a refund of any kind. Passes are non-transferable nor are they allowed to be resold.

 

Season Pass $49 Up Front or Full Payment

Must I pay in full for the 2019 Epic Australia Pass™?

You can either pay in full or pay $49 upfront with the remaining balance due on or about 1 May 2019, but hurry, Tuesday 26 February, marks the last chance to take advantage of only AU$49 upfront to lock in the lowest available price on the Epic Australia Pass™.

 

Can I split up the payments for the 2019 Epic Australia Pass™?

Yes, you can pay a $49 up front and the balance will be automatically charged on or about 1 May 2019 to the same credit card that you used to pay the $49 upfront. The outstanding balance can be paid in full at any time prior to 1 May 2019 by contacting Perisher at info@perisher.com.au.

 

When is the final payment for my 2019 Epic Australia Pass™ due?

The balance payable will be charged on or about 1 May 2019 to the credit card used for the initial purchase. Except as provided in our Terms and Conditions, the Epic Australia Pass™ is a non-cancellable, nonrefundable purchase. Where you have purchased multiple passes on the same credit card, the outstanding balance may be charged over multiple days starting on 1 May 2019. In the circumstance where your credit card payment is not completed, your pass and associated Epic Australia Pass™ benefits will not be activated. In this event we will attempt to contact you to inform you that the credit card payment has been unsuccessful and to secure payment of the balance. Passes are non-transferable, nor are they allowed to be resold.