Vail Resorts Inc. reported season-to-date total Skier visits were down 7.8 percent compared to the prior year season-to-date period.
Season-to-date total Lift Ticket revenue, including an allocated portion of season pass revenue for each applicable period, was up 0.4 percent compared to the prior year season-to-date period.
Season-to-date, Ski School revenue was up 2.0 percent and Dining revenue was down 3.6 percent compared to the prior year season-to-date period. Retail/Rental revenue for North American resort and ski area store locations was down 1.8 percent compared to the prior year season-to-date period.
The ski season metrics cover the comparative periods from the beginning of the ski season through January 5, 2020, and for the prior-year period through January 6, 2019. The reported ski season metrics are for its North American destination mountain resorts and regional ski areas, including the results of Peak Resorts in both periods and excluding the results of its Australian ski areas in both periods
Commenting on the ski season to date, Rob Katz, CEO said, “Relative to the strong conditions in the prior year, the 2019/20 North American ski season got off to a slower start, impacting both our local and destination guest visitation in the pre-holiday period through December 19, 2019. Excluding Whistler Blackcomb and Stevens Pass, results improved over the holiday period between December 20, 2019, and January 5, 2020, compared to the prior-year holiday period, delivering growth in total skier visitation and across all revenue lines, which were in line with our expectations. Results at Whistler Blackcomb and Stevens Pass were below expectations, driven by the poor early season conditions that continued through the holiday period. Season-to-date, snowfall at Whistler Blackcomb was 60 percent below the 30-year average through December 31, 2019, representing the lowest snowfall recorded in over 30 years for the period. In recent weeks, conditions have improved at Whistler Blackcomb with nearly all of the terrain now open.”
Given the strong conditions last year, the initial guidance for fiscal year 2020 incorporated the possibility of a slower start to the season. While challenging results at Whistler Blackcomb and Stevens Pass have put downward pressure on overall results, the company expects Resort Reported EBITDA for fiscal year 2020 to be within the guidance range issued on September 26, 2019 given strong season pass sales, results through the holiday period and the recently improved conditions at Whistler Blackcomb and Stevens Pass. The company’s guidance assumes continued normal conditions at the resorts, a continuation of the current economic environment and the foreign currency rates in place when the guidance was originally issued.
Vail Resorts subsidiaries operate 37 destination mountain resorts and regional ski areas, including Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Keystone, and Crested Butte in Colorado; Park City, UT; Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood in the Lake Tahoe area of California and Nevada; Whistler Blackcomb in British Columbia, Canada; Perisher, Falls Creek and Hotham in Australia; Stowe, Mount Snow, Okemo in Vermont; Hunter Mountain, NY; Mount Sunapee, Attitash, Wildcat and Crotched in New Hampshire; Stevens Pass, WA; Liberty, Roundtop, Whitetail, Jack Frost, and Big Boulder in Pennsylvania; Alpine Valley, Boston Mills, Brandywine, and Mad River in Ohio; Hidden Valley and Snow Creek in Missouri; Wilmot in Wisconsin; Afton Alps in Minnesota; Mt. Brighton in Michigan; and Paoli Peaks, IN.