The annual Post Office Travel Money report, produced in partnership with tour operator Crystal Ski Holidays, identified the best-value resorts in Europe for a family ski holiday. A one-week break to Bansko in Bulgaria costs, on average, £1,530 for a family of four, almost £100 cheaper than the second cheapest resort, Bardonecchia in Italy, which claimed the top spot in the survey last year.
According to Post Office Travel Money and Crystal Ski Holidays, prices for ski essentials, meals, and drinks at the resort are nearly half of those at the Continent's most expensive locations.
1. Bansko, Bulgaria
Bansko is Bulgaria's most modern ski resort and is a very good-value destination for beginners and intermediate skiers and snowboarders on tighter budgets. Bansko's prices for eating out and the nightlife are relatively low, while ski school comes in at just £91.71.
The slopes offer beautiful scenery, plenty of runs for everyone from beginners to masters of off-piste, and fast lifts to the mountains. Bansko's compact ski area is centered on the slopes of Todorka mountain, together with a little linked sub-sector on a foothill called Chalin Valog.
It is Bulgaria's leading international-standard ski resort, based around a UNESCO World Heritage Site on the fringes of the Pirin National Park.
2. Bardonecchia, Italy
Ideal for beginner and intermediate skiers, Bardonecchia is nestled right by the French border amidst three skiing areas. In 2006, Bardonecchia hosted the snowboarding events for the Turin Winter Olympics.
Indulge in the full spectrum of the region's hearty, meat-heavy specialties. The cuisine is also reasonably priced compared to many Alpine resorts; expect to pay €8 to €10 for a quality main course and about €22 for a three-course set menu at a mountain restaurant.
Ski lifts are no more than a kilometre from any point in within the village of Bardonecchia.
You can stay in Campo Smith Apartments, which are part of the Campo Smith complex, ideally located beside the main ski school at the bottom of the main lift.
3. Kranjska Gora, Slovenia
A good choice of family-friendly, high-value places to eat and a good choice of off-slope facilities the whole family can enjoy.
Eighteen slopes are offered by this resort tailored to a wide range of abilities. The town is both the municipal center and the largest town in the Zgornjesavska valley. The valley is famed primarily for its World Cup competitions in Alpine skiing and ski flights on the giant ski-jump in Planica.
The skiing on the slopes of Vitranc offers ski runs that vary in difficulty from the very easy and suitable for children to the steep competition runs in Podkoren.
Ski runs are linked with a system of chairlifts and ski tows. Tougher skiing are to be found on the Podkoren mountain. Off-piste skiing is also available ranging from a gentle downhill from the Karavanke summits to extreme skiing down the ridge of the Julian Alps.
Come and enjoy your cheap holiday at these ski resorts!