“Not worth the lift ticket prices”

Rude personnel, extremely strict rules… inconsistent feedback from people working here regarding the resort rules.

Not worth the lift ticket prices and f**k vail resorts altogether

This place is an absolute nightmare! Do not come here unless you want to wait in line for a shuttle for over an hour minimum and wait to park your car for an hour as well. Just parking your car will make you wanna leave it’s so chaotic. Have fun looking at the backside when you arrive, there’s fresh powder everywhere, however they won’t open it and force feed everyone into lines once you hit the front side. It’s honestly the worst resort I’ve ever been to. Just a giant trap to take your money away from you. Oh and when it’s time to leave be prepared to wait in another hour line to get back to your car and then another hour to leave. Avoid at all costs

2 hours to download from village to parking lot. 100+ people line built up from 3:30 to 4 waiting on first bus. Supply trucks were dangerously pulling in and out through the queue of people. Cutting left and right with no direction. Total mess.

No lights in the pitch black parking lot at 6 pm to top it off. This resort needs a total overhaul on customer service and parking functionality. Frankly unacceptable from an upper level management perspective. They have the $$ to do it right.

Don’t come here unless you stay on site. 4x Epic Pass holder. Heavenly and Kirkwood are visitor friendly.

After paying for very EXPENSIVE ticket during Christmas, we were informed by staff that the mountain is closed for the day due to safety reason and extreme weather, after only less than 2 hours of total time spent at the resort. When asking about partial refund or credit, nothing was offered and staff told us that “this situation happens frequently at the resort”.

Source: Google reviews

“They tweet the mountain is 100% open.. BS”

36″ fresh snow and they tweet the mountain is 100% open. On arrival, nothing could be further from the truth. One gondola open to access the mountain and a two hour wait. Only two lifts open at mid.mountain. Meanwhile, exasperated punters filling the Vail Resorts coffers buying food and drink in the village while they wait. Cynical BS by Northstar/Vail. Cash cow in the short term, but these people will not return & they will tell others. Terrible experience.

OP via Google reviews

“Come to this resort if you would prefer to sit in your car rather than skiing”

Come to this resort if you would prefer to sit in your car rather than skiing. If you come on a Saturday-Sunday at least, that is all you will do. 2+ hour bumper to bumper traffic delay over 8 miles backed up from the resort on 1/21 (all entirely resort traffic) – they sell WAY more lift tickets and passes than people they can fit on the mountain or their infrastructure will allow. This was with an original departure time that should have had us to the parking lot over a half hour before opening. And good luck getting any customer service for all your wasted efforts and money – if they already have your money via Epic Pass or prepaid lift ticket, they couldn’t care less what experience you have from there. Many Tahoe resorts suffer capacity issues, but nowhere to the extremes of Northstar. If you do get in (we gave up today at least after 4 hours of trying) the skiing itself is average at best – better snow and better runs elsewhere.

Tyler Knox via Google reviews

“Vail resorts & specifically Northstar are horrible”

Vail resorts & specifically Northstar are horrible! We came up to ski for the day. We are family of 4 & have a 14 year old disabled son & a 17 year old snowboarder. The plan was that I would ski with the 17 year old & my husband would hang back with our disabled son. When we arrived to the resort my special needs son would not let me out of his site. My husband & I decided to switch places. He was going to ski with our older son & I was going to hang back. So as my husband was getting on the gondola they confiscated the past because his picture did not match. We had no idea that the passes were non-transferable. We figured we had two skiers and two passes. It is written in the smallest possible letters on the back of the card which why would you even think to look there? When we explained our situation to the resort they were not only rude but had zero compassion for our situation. We were treated awfully!!! I will stick with the small non corporate ski resorts where they tend to treat people with respect & don’t belittle them, especially during a difficult situation.

Carmen Petti via Onthesnow.com

From the team: Yep, the whole Vail’s idea with “epic pass” is to sell as many passes as possible and cancel/revoke/suspend/etc as many passes as possible as well. The Vail & Northstar gestapo is making sure that stupid rule is enforced so their CEO gets her $6M+ bonus.

“Why get a pass if you still have to stand in the long lines at the resort with everyone else”

Similar to others, the passes never come. Impossible to get any help. Prices change on whims. You have to call to stop the auto-renew and that can be a huge hassle. The customer service is far from stellar. If you love to ski/board at their resorts and know exactly what you want it may work for you, but if you are doing it for the first time or wanting to try it out, spend the time to make sure you know what you want/need and see if it’s worth it. They are little to no help and they seem not to care much about your experience.

Michael B via BBB.org

Do not expect to get your ski pass in the mail, ever. I ordered mine 15 business days ago and it still has not shipped. I spent an hour on the phone with customer service, and they said they did not know why it had not shipped and could not say when it would. Kept referencing that it should have arrived in ** business days and that there may have been shipping vendor delays

Rachel R via BBB.org

I order passes previous years but this year is crazy. Ordered passes 16 Nov and 5 Jan still nothing. ** * and they just tell you we will mail them. Can’t say when or anything. I ordered 2 months in advance so I don’t have to stand in lines but looks like I will be. I emailed them several times and no reply. Logged on line nothing. No one can tell you anything just we will mail them. Might be last time using them. The customer services call center is completely incompetent. confirmed the names and shipping address multiple times with the agent and STILL Nothing almost 2 months later. I agree Why get a pass if you still have to stand in the long lines at the resort with everyone else?

Richard H via BBB.org

If you happen to get your passes when you order them, then you will be happy. If there is a problem in getting your passes (paid in full of course), then the true agony begins. We ordered passes in October and 10 weeks later we still do not have them. I spoke with support services twice, sent multiple emails to **** resorts and had a live chat. One of our two passes was sent to the wrong address twice and the other one was never sent. The support services call center is completely incompetent. I could not reach anyone who was fluent in English. I confirmed the names and shipping address multiple times with the agent and STILL the wrong number of passes were sent to the wrong address. Why get a pass if you still have to stand in the long lines at the resort with everyone else? No compensation for this major inconvenience was ever offered.

Lynne M via BBB.org

The online ordering process is terrible. After you provide all the information including credit card information you get an error message telling you to call the 800 number… You call and have to wait a long time to be assisted over a terrible call quality line. I could barely understand half what the guy was saying.Over the phone I was told to create an account online (which I tried unsuccessfully). They completed my order over the phone but I could only get the passes mailed to me if I created an account online and sent pictures of the whole family.I tried to create an account after the attendant instructed me to do so and got an error again… It said I already had one and should reset my password. The link to reset was never received. Then after some time my wife (different email address) got an email with the link. She tried to reset the password but got an error and instructions to call the 800 number (again…). Summary: terrible customer service and I’ll need to wait in line at the resort to retrieve my passes on site…

Fernando C via BBB.org

Source: BBB.org

“We need a skier’s Bill of Rights!”

We went up to Northstar for 4 days and could only ski for 1 day. 2 Of the 4 was simple conditions and being shut down for good reason (rain and unexpected amounts of snow). However, on the 4th day: New Years Day, the day AFTER 36 inches of fresh powder had been dumped on the mountain, we arrived early (lifts were to open at 9:am). We parked, we arrived at the Gondola, only to be informed that the Express Lift is Closed and would likely not open and then we were instructed to get on the gondola line, which was so long that it weaved down and around and back up to where we just were.

We have had the same problem with Northstar before: they are under staffed and this morning, the excuse was “our people can’t get here”. We need a skier’s Bill of Rights! They charge big money for blackout day tickets so that you can expect to get on the mountain during peak days. However, and once again, we felt like the customer doesn’t matter and the Vale group doesn’t take their responsibility seriously to get people on the mountain! That’s the business they are in!

I sat out two days waiting for this day and fought off the family who wanted to to go home rather than sit around saying “these will be the best conditions ever”.  So why doesn’t the lifts open on the best day of skiing? I talked to a manager and said this: I said “You do realize that thousands of people have spent hundreds of dollars per person per day to enjoy skiing here today. It is Northstar’s business to provide safe and timely access to this beautiful day of perfect ski conditions. Do you realize that that’s the business you are in? The manager said – Do you know why we aren’t open? I said, because of lack of staff which happens here virtually all the time- he replied no, we have plenty of people, they just can’t get here. I said, with the money you are charging and all the costs for people to get here, you should have places for people to STAY HERE AND OPEN UP. He said- wait for it – ” We don’t have the resources to do that.” I said “I am done. We waited, got here, and now we are going to wait for two hours to wait for the gondola line to start which will be 2 hours minimum (that’s what they told us!) We
Are out of here. This resort sucks. Our friends arrived in Palisades and jumped on the slopes. What a waste of time and money.

Sean B. via Yelp

Former Northstar employee (Ski Coach): “Run Screaming Into The Night”

The majority of the management, both senior and mid level, had nothing but the companies bottom dollar in interest. From the CEO/COO down to ski team management. I was told by a ski team manager that coaches “should not let their athletes progress too fast because then the parents would realize they needed better coaches and a better mountain”, and that the goal was to keep them long enough to buy a house at northstar and lock them into the vail ecosystem. This same director drove away an alarming number of coaches, predominantly female. There’s no room for misogyny in the ski industry any more. Although apparently Vail/Northstar doesn’t feel the same. The bottom line 100% financially based decision making was an utter disappointment for someone who has put decades into the ski industry. The lack of livable pay or easily accessible and quality benefits for seasonal employees is pathetic. You can’t survive in a ski town with what they pay, and they expect you to dedicate more time than you’re paid for.

Advice to Management: Just give up. Quit. Stop trying.

Former Northstar employee (Ski Coach)

Source: Glassdoor.com

Dirty, Dank and Depressing

“The rooms do not look like the pictures on the website”

We would not recommend this property at all. It is bare-bones and a room on par with a Motel 6. There is no vanity in the bathrooms, the carpet was stained, the bed was old and caved toward the middle (making sleeping virtually impossible). For a resort setting, these rooms are dank, depressing and bland. The rooms do not look like the pictures on the website. The Hampton Inn down the road would provide a much better option for travelers. Avoid at all costs.

Kyle via Expedia.com

“no one answers the phone when you need help”

The bathtub was very dirty. we tried to clean it but still could not get stains out so we could not use it. See photos 2. We left an expensive tupperware in the fridge and forgot it on check out. We called the place 3 times and each time they promised they would get back to us but did not. So we had to pay for a replacement out of pocket 3. It was very hard to find the hot tubs that are in the rec center in the village itself . More signage would be useful. And no one answers the phone when you need help.

Traveler Expedia.com

“..old stained carpet”

However our unit had old stained carpet. The lighting was very dim, with one lamp knob broken so you had to plug/unplug it to turn it on/off. The dryer vent wasn’t attached, and of course cold air would come through to chill the condo.

Kenneth Yuen-Jing Expedia.com

“The bathroom ceiling has mold and mildew”

– Michael via Expedia

Source: Expedia.com

“Extremely dated resort”

The particular unit we rented was extremely dated. Comforters were made into the bed under sheets and mine had oatmeal or something all over it. Furniture in living area was all torn up.(leather)


Too expensive for being old. We did not stay in the main resort, there were only 2 restaurants open and in one you had to make reservations. The pizza place packed and waiting 1 hr for pizza.


The staff were unhelpful. I asked for assistance a few times by Phone email and no response. The tvs in the rooms did not work, there was a long winded explanation of how they worked, which did not actually work. Non of the shops were open and food and drink was expensive but a free bus ride, which no one was told about, on arrival, meant you could go to the supermarket and buy things cheaper


We had a mix of rooms it took hours to check in. Staff didn’t follow thru on getting keys to us they committed too. Floors were dirty. Beds were not comfortable.


This was my third stay and I was really disappointed with the apartment I was assigned. The whole place needed a serious update. I was a little grossed out by the bathtub and the curtain shower to be honest. I understand that each apartment has its own decoration as they are privately owned, but it was a big step down from the apartment I stayed in last time. I also had a family upstairs that was very very loud and constantly running.


They need to start remodeling there units. It’s time. Bathrooms, tubs and interiors need a major update


Top bunk bed missing sheets and ladder. Smelled very stuffy in the house. Staff very unhelpful when we ran into an issue (at the village)


Property is run down. Main element on stove would not light, dining room light not working, bathroom electric outlet not working. Property reviews said it was steps from the ski lifts, but actually you have to take a shuttle bus.


Soon as you walk in you’re greeted with bugs crawling all over the floor and furniture.


Service to get fans was a hassle, and one condo was about 3 miles away and was not cleaned had webs, lights not working, window screens were missing and no regular coffee. Very hot and no fans worked. Our family was not comfortable.


Not in village like booking showed. Bare minimum with amenities, towels etc. paying to get in pool. Was not that impressed with property


Dishwasher wasn’t working. We had to evacuate the room in a snow storm for maintenance. Lodging was not prepped before we arrived.


The 2nd bathroom was tiny and the shower head was not doable for a proper shower. The temp in the bedrooms was not consistent and blowing in one direction only. The TV screen was small. Everything was dated.


Source: Booking.com

Poor grooming, hard to get to lifts, overall mismanaged

Having been a season pass holder for nearly 20 years I have seen the changes. Great mountain but since Vail took over and the aftermath of the pandemic there are troubles everywhere. Five feet of new snow for December 2022 and they cannot groom the mountain. Did you are an intermediate or beginner you will be on the same runs everyday. If you are here only for a day, well not so bad. Why can’t they groom one new run a day? Pretty easy, but they do the same ones just about everyday. And why does it take days to open the backside. It’s crazy. Either Vail resorts want to save money with limited staffing ie. less operations or they just cannot hire enough people. They should let their customers know what’s going on.

Rick Hirshberg via OnTheSnow.com

“Waiting and waiting and waiting”

Let me start with the parking lot first. Arrived at the parking lot at 9:39 am. Then, wait for the Shuttle bus for 1 hour and 40 minutes. Finally
got to the first lift and waited 25 minutes. The second lift waited for 35 minutes. The third lift (Comstock) waited for 1 hour 20 minutes.
Finally got to the top of the Mountain at 1:45 pm. Waiting and waiting and waiting..

Ray Fang via OnTheSnow.com

“The resort seems to be mismanaged”

The resort seems to be mismanaged. Visited December 17-22. Unbelievable lift lines (20 minutes throughout the day). Plenty of snow, but only a few runs open. Backside closed. New app for shuttle buses doesn’t work, and again, very long (20-30 mins) wait for transportation around the resort. Many stores in the Village are shuttered. This is our long-time home resort and it’s depressing to see what Vail is doing to it!

Kathleen Forni via OnTheSnow.com

Source: OnTheSnow.com