Cheap Austrian Ski Resorts

Austria’s best for budget skiing.

Zell am See

Unparalleled panoramic skiing , Exceptional on piste...

Great for:

  • Families
  • Shopping
  • Non skiers

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Niederau

Traditional Tyrolean village, Easy links to Ski Juwe...

Great for:

  • Families
  • First-timers
  • Alpine charm

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Kirchberg

Lively après, Ski Kitzbühel for less, Linked ski area

Great for:

  • Après ski
  • Off-piste
  • Intermediate skiing

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Mayrhofen

Freestyling heaven, Tyrolean charm, Altitude & Snowbo...

Great for:

  • Families
  • groups
  • après ski

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Alpbach

Picturesque 1930’s village , Brilliant family resor...

Great for:

  • Families
  • Couples
  • Beginners and lower intermediate skiers

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Soll

Super-efficient lift system, Austria’s longest nigh...

Great for:

  • Families
  • Night skiing
  • Non-skiers

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

St Anton

Huge Arlberg area, Awesome après ski, Extensive powd...

Great for:

  • Groups
  • Non skiers
  • Off-piste

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Ellmau

Varied terrain, Part of the Ski Welt, Austria’s fast...

Great for:

  • Beginners
  • Alpine village charm
  • Families

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Axamer Lizum

Easy access to other resorts, Intermediate and advan...

Great for:

  • Varied terrain
  • World class skiing
  • Former host of the Winter Olympics

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Westendorf

Part of the SkiWelt, Varied terrain, Efficient lift s...

Great for:

  • Families
  • Austrian village charm
  • Beginners

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Top 10 Most Popular

A ski trip to Austria needn’t cost mountains: Lift passes, ski lessons and mountain lunches tend to be quite a bit cheaper than you’d find in France and Switzerland.

If you’re on a budget, these ten resorts will see you with a weeks’ worth of great skiing, hearty food and comfy lodging - with plenty of pennies to spare.

Austria: Top 10 Cheap Ski Resorts

Declared a city in the twenties, Zell’s packed with all sorts of restaurants, shops and accommodation – and low cost stuff’s no exception. Sure there’s the legendary 5* Grand Hotel, but you’ve also got plenty of small 3 star numbers and self-catered apartments within easy reach of the centre and slopes. And while the gourmet dining scene’s huge, you’ll find more than enough cheap eats for simple comfort food - Kupferkessel do pizzas and pasta for around €8 and there’s even a McDonalds... When it comes to buying food, supermarkets like Lidl keep prices low. You won’t need to remortgage for après either, with cocktails going for €4.50 when it’s Happy Hour at Green’s Bar. The skiing’s cracking value for money too, with the area pass including three ski areas shared between Zell and neighbour Kaprun, including the fabulously snow sure Kitzsteinhorn glacier. A free bus runs between them, and you’ll find free WiFi spots all over the area, even above the clouds on the Kitzsteinhorn at 3000m.

Less on the radar than the bigger Austrian resorts, Niderau’s kept prices nice and low. It’s a fabulous option for cheap family ski holidays, with recent years seeing free ski passes for under 16’s at the end of the season. And the freebies don’t end there, with free WiFi on the slopes and around the village, preventing any hefty data charges in next month’s phone bill… For learners and improvers, ski schools tend to cost a lot less than you find in France - a good €100 or so last time we checked. If you’re happy to cook, self-catering tends to see the lowest prices in resort (it’s worth popping into Worgl if you have a car with you, where the supermarkets tend to have bigger choice and lower prices). You’ll also find some 2 and 3 star guest houses and hotels, where meals can be included in the package on a B&B or Half Board basis.

Just 6km to the west, Kirchberg’s the way to ski Kitzbühel without a big-ski-town-budget. Both resorts are lift linked and share a fabulous 170km of the good stuff. But you’ve more than one world-class ski area on the doorstep – Kirch also acts as the gateway the Ski Welt, Austria’s biggest linked area at 280km. If you’re not fussed about the gourmet glory on the Kitz side of the mountain, there’s plenty of hearty, no frills food closer to home – like Tutti’s, where pizzas start from €7 and Aurora which does famously good (but cheap) Chinese. While this is a small resort, it’s by no means sleepy – with après that’s less Perrier-sipping, more pitcher-swinging: The Londoner (€2 beers on special occasions) and Kracherl (famed for its boozy loyalty card) keep the party going until the early hours.

Mayrhofen’s a bit of a chameleon: There’s top shelf luxury if you want it, but also plenty of scope to ski on a shoestring. You’ll find a lovely bundle of self-catered apartments, where homemade meals and packed lunches will stretch the budget further. There are also some cracking Snow Homes – no frills crash pads, where breakfasts and suppers are provided in a local restaurant. For lunchtimes, Gasser’s do hearty meat sarnies for around €5 (plus a fine selection of cooked meats if you’d rather make your own). Bruggerstube’s also super value for supper, where 3 courses of good old Austrian fare can come with change from €15. As for the skiing, there’s 136km of slopes on the Ahorn and Penken mountains, with many other resorts nearby if you fancy exploring elsewhere.

You’d expect the officially ‘prettiest village in Austria’ to be riddled with posh restaurants and hotels by now, but it’s actually rather cheap to ski here. The costs for eating out are more high-street than high-mountain, with Gasthof Jakober and Pizzeria Messners dishing up Italian and Austrian favourites for around €10. Getting here needn’t break the bank either - being only an hour’s drive from Innsbruck keeps the taximeter down. If you’re opting to self-cater, it’s worth stopping off in the city after you land, where big supermarkets like Lidl tend to have smaller prices than in resort. When it comes to the ski area, the Ski Juwel totals a decent 145km slopes, with Alpbach hogging the highest altitudes on the Wiedersbergerhorn. Pass prices drop if you’re here at the beginning of the season, which is actually our favourite time of year – the Advent Market, exhibitions and workshops are a real treat in the build up to Christmas.

Soll’s no more than an hour away from Innsbruck - so if you’re arranging your own travel the transfers shouldn’t cost mountains. Once you’re in resort, the lift access to the ski area is ace. And what a ski area: The SkiWelt has 280km across nine interconnected resorts. Look out for sweeteners like free passes for under 15’s and youth prices for adults on certain days, and you can shave more off the holiday cost. You’ll find tremendous facilities for families - half day kindergarten was €30 when we last checked, while it can climb to over €50 in France. The après is fantastic too, with €2 beers at Moonlight Bar and flyers offering freebies and discounts (the schnapps at the Red Horse tastes even better when you haven’t paid for it…).

You don’t have to fork out a fortune to ski this alpine legend. If you’re happy without the bells and whistles, cheap catered chalets come with a room and six days of meals, saving you from spending on restaurants in resort. Staying in neighbouring villages like St Jacob or Pettneau can also keep costs down, with easy bus access into the main hub. Then there’s self-catering, where a bus or drive out to Mpreis is your answer for savvy supermarket nosh. The ski pass covers a socking great 350km of slopes - 50km more than French favourite Espace Killy, but often coming in for less euros. And it also happens to have some of the world’s best freeride terrain, across a healthy 200km. That’s not to say learners have to commit to the huge blueprint, as clever beginner passes cover all the slopes you’ll need on the first few days. All the more to spend on après in the epic Mooserwirt, which as the most famous mountain bar in the world, simply has to be experienced at least once…

Though Ellmau’s accommodation comes with low price tags, it still holds onto good star ratings – a canny choice if you don’t fancy slumming it. Wallet friendly supermarkets like Billa and MPreis keep cooking cheap, but eating out isn’t too pricey either: Memory Bar has cracking pizzas from €6 and even the mountain food’s surprisingly decent (plus it’s proper Austrian nosh, a far cry from chicken and chips). The skiing’s incredible, with the massive SkiWelt area (the largest in Austria) and its 280km of corduroy just a lift ride away. Ellmau hogs some of the best beginner slopes in the region, and compared to France and Switzerland, lessons are something like €100 cheaper – with equipment deals often thrown in for good measure.

On top of its own 40km of slopes, Snow Park and 300 hectares of freeride terrain, Axamer Lizum has terrific access to more ski resorts all over the region. If you’re content with commuting, you’ll have a smashing time here: The Olympia Pass covers nine local resorts and 300km of slopes. The resort itself is a small and friendly huddle of cheap 3 and 4 star hotels, mostly available on Half Board – so all you’ll have to buy is lunches (mains like Wiener Schnitzel cost under €10 in Weiss). Transfer costs stay low if you fly into Innsbruck, which is only half an hour away. There are usually free buses running between the resort and the city, letting you travel to and fro as often or little as you like.

The SkiWelt’s super – it’s Austria’s biggest linked ski area, covering a whacking great 280km of pistes in nine resorts. See if the ticket office are still dishing out their famous special offers (like free off peak passes for under 15’s) to save even more euros. Westendorf has access right into the heart of the ski area, but there’s another bonus to its location: Only a 20 minute drive from Kitzbühel, it’s a budget way to experience the legendary town and area without the Kitz price tag. Back at base, you’ve got a gaggle of low cost 3 star hotels and apartments – simple, comfy pads to crash out in after an awesome day on the snow. With the resort having its own train station as well as easy road access, you can really compare prices to find the savviest route in (if your package doesn’t include flights and transfers already).

If you're looking for a cheap ski resort, Austria has a lot more to offer than you might think...

Admittedly, the cheap Austrian ski resorts aren't all pumping out the bargain basement ski deals that we're used to in eastern Europe - but if you want a high standard of on-slope and in-town facilities, they offer great quality holidays that are a less pricey alternative to skiing in France or Switzerland.

In fact many of austria's cheapest ski resorts are also its best, because they're so big that they often include both exclusive and budget accommodation in different parts of the same mountain town.

This is the definitive list of the best cheap ski resorts in Austria, but if you'd like to include other countries in your search, our ultimate list of the world's cheapest ski resorts might be just the ticket.


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