Are my accommodations slopeside?
Yes. Both the Grand Summit and Jordan Grand Hotels, as well as all condominums booked through Van Wart Vacations are located on trails with ease of access to the chairlifts. If you booked the Bethel Inn Resort, their townhouses and Inn suites are all off mountain. MSA Chalets and Hotel are close to the Gondola. the hotel and condominiums have kitchens?
Yes. All hotel suites and condominiums have fully equipped kitchens. All units have coffee machines but not suitable unless you have ground your own beans. These are for ground coffee only. At the Grand Summit, there are are a few studio deluxe suites with mini kitchens, however, they still provide all the utensils and cooking facilities to accommodate your needs. If you book last minute, you may not get a kitchen suite and your booking will indicate that. Some Sugarloaf hotel and condos only have "wet bars" which are minimal kitchen facilities. Your confirmation will indicate that. Chateau Mont.Sainte.Anne has a good variety of options at different price points. Contact Bob for specific quotes.
Are there washer and dryers available?
Yes. All resort hotels and condominiums provide access to washers and dryers. You can inquire at the Welcome Centre or ask Housekeeping for the location in your facility. While some Sugarloaf units may have washers and dryers, we cannot guarantee them nor do we have an inventory of units with these included. If you happen to get a unit with these appliances it is a bonus!
Are there Barbeques available at any of the resorts?
No. Due to fire regulations and liability concerns, barbeques are not provided nor are they permitted at any of our ski resorts.
Do I need to bring bedding or kitchen supplies?
No. All unit types booked through Van Wart Vacations provide all bedding, linens, kitchen supplies and utensils. You only need to bring your food if you plan to cook in your unit. If you are missing any supplies, simply place a call to housekeeping and they will restock anything that is missing from your unit.
I do not wish to use the sleeper sofa. Can I request separate beds for every family member?
All units are assigned based on the number of guests in your family, age, relationship and gender mix. The queen sleeper sofas provide for (2) guests and while often you may not need to use it, it depends on demand at the resorts and the mix within your family. Our #1 priority is to ensure every family is as comfortable as possible and Bob personally reviews every unit to every booking to maximize your comfort and bed utilization. You may request a cot upon arrival (these cannot be pre-booked due to limited supplies), however, the cost is $20 US per night plus taxes. It is more economical to bring an air mattress or bed in a bag as backup if you believe every guest will require a separate bed. At MSA, none of the Chalets have sleeper sofas and your confirmation will show the number and mix of beds in each room. The Chateau Mont.Sainte.Anne hotel has varying suite types with and without sleeper sofas.
Can I use the hot tub and pool facilities at the other condos and hotels?
No. For all resorts, your package is booked for a specific location and for the amenities included with that location only. Guests are not provided access to the amenities of other locations unless it specifically states this in your arrival package. since they are designed to accommodate a limited number based on the units in that facility only. For Sugarloaf, all families staying in a condominium are provided with access to the Spa and Fitness Centre. Sugarloaf Mountain Hotel guests now have their own outdoor hot tub and lap pool but may purchase discounted access to the Fitness Centre. For the Mont.Sainte.Anne Chalets, you will be provided full access to nearby pool and hot tub facilities.
I had a special request (near friends, specific unit, facing the mountain, top floor), and didn't get it. What happened?
All units are on a best efforts basis. We will have taken your request into consideration at time of assignment. The first priority is location and making sure we get you into the hotel or condominium building of your choice. The second priority is bed configuration to ensure families have enough beds to accommodate all of their guests. The third priority is larger and special needs families. These are families with very young or elderly guests, families that because of the number of guests, require full kitchens, guests with physical challenges or on occasion, families that had to take two units because of limited availability. While we will endeavour to get as many Summit full kitchens as possible, if we have only 1 or 2 guests in a studio unit, we must give full kitchen priority to families of 4 and 5 occupying these units. And finally, owners will often reclaim their units and we will have to assign another unit from the one you requested. The unit you requested may no longer be in the rental pool or was not put into the pool for this season.
How many guests are able to occupy each unit?
For the US resorts, occupancy will depend on the type of unit you have booked. Some condos will have more beds than others and these are assigned to families with more guests. Once you have reached the occupancy for your type of unit, then each additional guest is discounted and charged for ski lift passes. Each unit type requires that the family pays the pricing based on occupancy requirements. Pricing for Studio units at the hotels are applicable based on occupancy of 2 but the units can often sleep up to 4. The 1-bedroom hotel suites are based on occupancy of 4, however, will often sleep up to 6. Studio condos are based on occupancy of 3, however, there may be a few that can sleep 4. 1-bedroom condos are based on occupancy of 4, however, can often sleep up to 6. 2-bedroom condos are priced based on occupancy of 6, however, some can sleep up to 10 guests. 3-bedroom condos, when available, are priced based on occupancy of 8, however, can sleep up to 12 guests. For the Quebec resorts, your confirmaiton will provide you with details of pricing based on the number of guests in your booking. Please review your bedding requirements with Bob Van Wart to ensure you have a unit that will accommodate the number of guests in your booking.
Why didn't I get my first choice for condo or hotel suite?
Condos and hotel suites are privately owned and the resorts and the resort manages the properties for vacation rentals. Often the unit may not be available for one or all nights of your stay so an alternative has to be assigned. Often the owners have decided to stay in their unit on Sunday, which takes it out of the rental pool for our families. Hotels have a variety of types of units (sleep 2, sleep 3, sleep 4, sleep 6, no kitchens, mini kitchens, etc). There are only a limited number of units made available for heavily discounted group rates. The first priority is to make everyone as comfortable as possible and this may mean a unit with more beds had to be assigned to families with more guests. Most often, guests are able to get the unit they requested or at least in the location they requested.
How do I book my overnight stay in Bangor?
Please visit the Van Wart Vacations website page "Bangor". There you will fins our preferred suppliers that will give you excellent rates year round. You are responsible for booking and guaranteeing your Bangor stay; Van Wart Vacations only negotiates the best rate available on your behalf.
Are all of the Bangor hotels the same?
No. Each hotel provides a unique offering that will appeal to most every family's needs. Some include complimentary full breakfasts, some have a small additional charge. Two have indoor heated pools. Four Seasons and Country Inn at the Mall have provided us with the option to book directly OnLine while the other suppliers require that you call their toll free number. Check out the page on our website and determine which location is best for your family.
Is there a negotiated rate for an overnight hotel in Quebec?
No. Van Wart Vacations no longer has a negotiated rate with the Courtyard Marriott in Quebec City. Due theclose proximity to MSA and other Quebec resorts, families did not need an overnight stay in Quebec CIty. We recommend you use CAA, corporate or government rates if applicable at the time you book any overnight stay.
How long a drive is it to the Ski Resort?
This will depend on time of day and weather conditions. Generally, if you are leaving from Bangor, allow up to 3-hours to drive to the US resorts if you stop for groceries at Hannafords in Farmington. If you are leaving from your home, it can take up to 11 hours depending on your city and province. For the Quebec resorts, it will take from 6 hours for New Brunswick families and up to 11 hours for families traveling from Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island. Mapquest is a good resource to help you plan your route to the resort. Click here to access Mapquest.
CANADIAN DOLLAR OVERVIEW
What advice can you provide regarding the Canadian Dollar?
We cannot advise you whether to book your Sunday River and Sugarloaf ski vacations in US or Canadian dollars and to offer a view as to whether you would gain or lose by booking one currency over another is something nobody can nor should do. We can provide you with some things to consider. If you book in Canadian funds now, then you know with absolute certainty that is the most your package will cost because VanWart Vacations is able to lock in that rate. We do know that there was a time or two when the Canadian dollar was at a 60c or more premium cost to the US dollar so, it can get worse. Most forecasters are suggesting the dollar will get worse by another 5c - 10c to the US dollar before there is any sign of improvement in mid 2016. This is well after our ski vacations befoere the forecasters think the dollar will improve. https://www.poundsterlinglive.com/cad/2343-canadian-dollar-faces-more-pain-ahead-435435 Canada is a resource based country and oil is our No. 1 resource. At season launch, oil prices are depressed and that hurts the Canadian dollar. http://economics.about.com/od/pricesexchangerates/a/oil_and_dollars.html The late summer GDP results were worse than expected and showed a slumped Canadian economy. Some pundits are referring to this as a "technical recession" and that has hurt our dollar. Then, there is the impact of positive news in the US. As the US economy strengthens, that too has a negative impact on the Canadian dollar. Investors want to put their money in an economy that will grow and give them higher returns. The non-economic factors to consider is if you pay in Canadian funds, you can use Interac eTransfer. You can book your package within minutes of receiving your confirmation. That gives you priority over anyone guaranteeing their package after you. If you make changes, it is much easier to add guests, change lift passes, add dining cards, change your entire booking if you use Interac eTransfer. If you pay in US funds then you must pay with certified personal cheques or with bank drafts. We must have guaranteed funds before we pay the resorts for your vacation. This makes last minutes changes vitrually impossible. For example, two days before your arrival you want to add a guest. If you paid using Interac eTransfer, this can be arranged at our group rates. If you paid by bank draft, we cannot get you group rates and you must pay full retail (approximately twice the price!). If a personal cheque is returned and we cannot recover those funds from the family, then we cannot get them back from the resort. If you wish to speak with us at any time about this or any other questions you might have, please feel free to call or email.
I need to cancel my vacation. Is this just considered a minor change with no penalties?
No. A cancellation is not considered a minor change and is not covered by the "CHANGES and AMENDMENTS" policies below. Each Spring Break Week Group package has very specific cancellation terms so please review the link provided on your confirmation. It will take you directly to the cancellation policy for your package. If you booked a vacation other than a Spring Break package, then the cancellation terms will be recited right on your confirmation. Changes and Amendments may be made as long as you do not actually cancel your entire booking. Further details with examples of changes and amendments are provided below.
I need to change my booking from a Canadian Spring Break week to some other time of the year. Can I do this without penalties and keep my original package cost?
It may be possible to change your vacation package week. This will depend upon availability. As with any vacation package, there will be a change fee as noted below since your original booking needs to be cancelled and a new booking put in place. Van Wart Vacations and the resorts are very accommodating and often you may only need to pay the additional cost for the new timeframe you select. You will not be able to keep your original package price unless it coincidentally is the same price for the new week you select. We make every attempt to accommodate these requests and please know that you will need to pay any additional costs if the prices are higher the week you select. In the event the pricing is lower (for example there may be a lower price in a slow February week), then you will be given the benefit of the lower price.
CELLPHONE AND ROAMING CHARGES
Will I get good cellphone reception in the US?
Cellphone coverage will vary depending on your phone type and model; your carrier and of course where you are in the US and Canada. It is recommended you check with your carrier before departure to determine where you may have difficulty accessing cellphone coverage.
Should I purchase a Roaming Package:
Most carriers offer a low cost 30 day plan for data and / or cellphone coverage. It is recommended you purchase at least a cellphone plan since in the event of an emergency or if you need to contact Bob with a last minute emergency change or cancellation, the nominal cost of a roaming plan could save you many $$$ if you have to make calls in the US and you do not have a plan. Most carriers will send you a text message as soon as you leave Canada advising you that you are now Roaming and they typically tell you how much you will pay. For the security of a roaming package, it is recommended you make the purchase. You can often simply call your carrier and tell them you want the basic package rather than spending a week trying to figure it out!
CHANGES and AMENDMENTS
Can I add guests after I've guaranteed my vacation package?
Yes. All additions must be prearranged by Bob Van Wart at least 15 business days prior to your scheduled date of arrival at the resort. This will ensure Bob has received your payment and the resort has a lift pass for your additional guest. If you ordered a lift pass last minute and it is not included with your package, please notify the agent at check in. It will be in a separate envelope. If the agent cannot locate it, contact Bob Van Wart immediately so that we can investigate. There can be no refunds once a guest has been added so please ensure you check your package carefully upon arrival. We cannot correct errors and omissions unless you notify us immediately. Any guest additions or purchases at the resort are at full retail; the resort cannot give you the Van Wart Group rates. Additions within 10 business days of scheduled arrival date will be subject to a minimum $100 change fee (US for SR and SL or Canadian for MSA) and only if Bob is able to accommodate your request with fully cleared funds. If you paid in US funds and wish to make a change, email Bob and you will be advised as to whether the change can be made. Any changes within 7 days of your scheduled arrival date will be assessed on an as needed basis. The resort and VanWartVacations.com reserve the right to decline last minute changes since packages will already have been prepared and delivered to your check in location. Once you check in, no adjustments or refunds are possible and your package will be considered accurate to your final confirmation. All change payments must be in cleared funds. (Interac or cash only; no personal cheques can be accepted within 15 business days of your scheduled arrival date . Due to the need for cleared funds, there can be no exceptions if you have paid by cheque). If you paid in Canadian funds, then you will pay the rate in effect when you have requested the change unless there has been a variance less than $2.
Can I cancel a guest after I've guaranteed my vacation package?
All cancellations must be prearranged by Bob Van Wart at least 15 business days prior to your scheduled arrival date at the resort and will be subject to a $100 change fee (US for SR or SL or Canadian for MSA). This will ensure Bob can cancel the lift pass and issue you a partial refund directly. Any cancellations within 7 days of your scheduled date of arrival or after your arrival cannot be refunded; the resort will only issuage you ski guarantee coupons for the next ski season. Please note if you paid in Canadian funds, then you will be responsible to cover any exchange difference between your rate and the rate at which the bank will purchase back the cancelled portion of your contract. If the difference is less than $2 then there will be no exchange charge.
Can I make changes after I've guaranteed my vacation package?
Yes. All changes must be prearranged with Bob Van Wart at least 15 business days prior to your scheduled arrival at the resort. This will ensure Bob can communicate the change and your package will be correct when you arrive. Any changes will be subject to a $100 change fee (US for SL or SR or Canadian for MSA) If you paid in Canadian funds, then you will be responsible for any loss of exchange. Please see "Can I cancel a guest after I've guaranteed my vacation package?" above. Changes requested within 7 days of scheduled date of arrival may be declined and will be assessed on a case by case basis. Packages will already have been prepared and delivered to your check in location. If your package is incorrect at check in and your requested change has not been completed, you must notify Bob Van Wart immediately. Corrections cannot be made later in the week and definitely not after you have checked out. Your package will be considered correct as confirmed and no refunds or adjustments are possible after check out.
My Confirmation is incorrect. How do I fix it?
On every confirmation we require that you review the information presented to you in your confirmation. If it is incorrect, advise Bob Van Wart within 24 hours. This enables us to fix the error or mis-information you may have provided and ensures you book exactly what you need before payment is made. If you have not advised of errors within 24 hours, then we cannot be held responsible for any over or underpayment that results. The resorts rely on the information we provide them and we in turn rely on the information you provide us and is subject to your approval before you send payment. The final review is done by you and if we are not notified of any errors in time to fix them, then we cannot be held liable for any additional costs. Pleas see other bullet points in this section relative to timing of changes and applicable change fees.
When I arrive at the resort, can I change my room?
No. Please do not ask the Hotel staff or Welcome Centre to change your room or condo at time of check-in. You have been assigned a unit based on your confirmation and are likely linked to a number of your friends / other families you wanted to be close to for socializing. All resorts have been asked NOT to change your unit unless there is a deficiency that cannot be fixed immediately upon your checking into your unit. Like you, most families have asked for specific locations to be near health care providers, babysitters, accommodate special needs, etc. We cannot change your unit assignment until all families are checked in. If your unit is unsatisfactory the resort will decide if they need to relocate you if there is a unit that has not been assigned.
We are scheduled to leave on Friday. Can we add Friday night to our package?
You must book both the Friday and Saturday nights for all US resorts. Canadian resorts may allow a Friday night only stay with limited availability. You must prearrange this with Bob prior to your scheduled date of arrival. We can extend your stay for a full weekend, not just Friday night. To get our discounts, you must prebook both Friday and Saturday nights in advance for US resorts. Friday and Saturday nights are sold as weekend packages and the resorts will not break them up. The pricing is generally higher than what we pay for the mid-week package but it is possible to prebook an extended stay. If you wish to extend your stay once you've arrived, you will need to work out your price and arrangements directly with the resort.
I want to stay an extra night or change my booking from condo to hotel. Can I change my package through the Van Wart Ski Groups while I am at the resort?
No. If you want to add an extra night or change from condo to hotel or vice-versa, or even add another guest after you've arrived, you will need to work directly with the retail sales at the resort. Van Wart vacations will have settled your booking with the resort and while Bob travels with most of the ski groups, it is not possible to add nights, guests or change types of accommodations and receive group pricing after you've arrived. The resort may charge you their full retail price for any additions or amendments. It is important to contact Bob prior to your departure if you wish to make any changes and benefit from group pricing.
What time is Check-In?
Check-in for Sunday River and Mont.Sainte.Anne is 6:00 pm, Check-in for Sugarloaf is 4:00 pm. Check-in for Bethel Inn is 4:00 pm. Many units will be available upon arrival. Access to your unit will depend upon what time the last guests checked out, whether the owners are in the unit (they are able to leave later on Sunday), or if housekeeping's schedule put them in a different part of your building. Our staff and check-in folks work diligently to have rooms ready for you. If your accommodations are not ready on arrival, then enjoy your afternoon of free skiing at our US resorts. In Quebec, spend the afternoon in "Old Quebec" or you may purchase an additional Sunday lift pass (full retail if purchased at the resort; discounted group rates if purchased in advance through Van Wart Vacations.)
Where do I go to check in ?
If you have booked a condo, go directly to the Welcome Centre, South Ridge at Sunday River or the Base Lodge at Sugarloaf. If you have booked a hotel suite, go directly to the Grand Summit Hotel or Jordan Grand Hotel at Sunday River or to the Sugarloaf Mountain Hotel for Sugarloaf. If you are booked at the Bethel Inn, go directly to Bethel. Simply give them your name and advise them you are with Van Wart Vacations. For the Canadian Spring Break weeks, there are no reservation numbers issued. For our non-spring break weeks, your confirmation will have your reservation number. For Quebec Chateau Mont.Sainte.Anne bookings go to the front desk of the hotel; for the Chalets at Mont.Sainte.Anne, go to the Office of the Chalets. These locations are right at the base of Mont.Sainte.Anne down from the Gondola. For these locations you will have a reservation number on your confirmation.
What do I need for Check-In?
You must always have a copy of your final confirmation with you and if the package you booked requires one, your Reservation Number will be recorded. Please note with the Group Packages at Sunday River and Sugarloaf, during the Canadian Spring Break weeks, there are no reservation numbers. You must have a copy of your final confirmation and give your name at the front desk. For all Quebec bookings, you will always have a Reservation number regardless of when you are traveling.
What if my room isn't ready when I arrive?
Most rooms will be available by late morning arrival, however, there can be no guarantees (please note comments under What time is check-in?). For US resorts, you are provided with complimentary skiing for the afternoon commenncing at 12 noon. Make sure you have your ski gear handy when you leave home. The hotels have a designated changing area and at the Welcome Centre, there is an upstairs lounge for public use. Depending on the weather, this is also a good time to get your last minute groceries in Bethel or have lunch at one of the resort's restaurants. If this is your first time to the resort, it is also a good chance to scout out the facilities. In Quebec, an afternoon in Old Quebec is a great way to spend your free time.
Where do I park when I check in to my condo or hotel suite?
You will be provided with (1) complimentary parking pass that will enable you to park right at your condo or at the hotel main parking lot. If you have more than one vehicle, the resort will provide you with additional parking at the overflow areas.
What time is Check-Out?
Check out time is always no later than 10:00 am. Please reconfirm with your resort to ensure they have not changed the check-out time due to higher than normal checkin volumes on your day of departure.
What happens if I require a late Check-Out?
If you require a late check out you must arrange that directly with the resort. They may or may not be able to accommodate your request due to housekeeping schedules and the need to turn your unit for guests arriving later in the day. VWSG is not able to pre-arrange a later checkout than 10:00 am.
What happens if I check out later than 10:00?
If you check out later than 10:00, the resorts will likely charge at least a $50 Cdn or $50 US late checkout fee. If your unit is not vacated in time for housekeeping to turn it on their regularly scheduled time for your location, then expect to pay a full day's lodging cost at the resort's full retail rates. Van Wart Vacations is not able to amend or intervene in any arrangements once you have checked in and accepted the package as detailed in your confirmation. It is essential to the efficient management of incoming / outgoing guests that you check out by no later than 10:00.
CHONDOLA at NORTH PEAK
Am I able to ride the Chondola to North Peak?
Yes. All skiers with valid lift passes may ride the Chondola. If you do not have a valid lift pass, then you will need to purchase a special day pass at the South Ridge Welcome Centre. This will enable you to ride the Chondola to North Peak Lodge to connect with friends and family for meals and to enjoy dining on the deck (weather permitting).
I am taking my child across the US border, however, my spouse is not joining us. Do I need to do anything special?
Yes. You must obtain a letter, signed by the non-travelling spouse, including contact information where that spouse can be reached in the event Customs wishes to confirm your authority to take the child across the border. Please refer to the full requirements detailed in the Customs websites. Click here on either the US Customs or the Canada Customs to be redirected to their websites.
Are there daycare facilities at the resort?
Yes. Sunday River has daycare facilities at the Grand Summit Hotel, Jordan Grand Hotel and at South Ridge. You must prearrange day care for both resorts. For further information on the Sunday River daycare service, click here to access their website. For daycare services at Sugarloaf, click here to access their website.
DINING CARDS - AVAILABLE ONLY AT SUNDAY RIVER
Where do I get my Dining Cards?
If you purchased Sunday River Dining cards they will be included with your package at check in. Please note your confirmation will ask that you please order your dining cards prior to making your final payment. Once you make your final payment, if you wish to add Dining Cards, you will not receive the preferred exhange rate from your lift and lodging booking. There are additional administrative costs associated with adding cards after you make payment. As well, we cannot offer you preferred exchange rates on such small transactional amounts. Your cost for a dining card will still be $80 US, however, there will be up to a 10% exchange cost associated with adding these once you make your final payment since we cannot purchase a Foreign Exchange contract for such small amounts as dining cards. It is important to order your dining cards before making your final payment. EFFECTIVE FOR OUR 2017 SKI SEASON: If you have not ordered dining cards or wish to avoid a small administrative charge for ordering after your final payment, Sunday River has agreed to offer them for sale but only when you check in. You will also be subject to whatever the exchange rate is at that time and the conversion fees added on by your credit card supplier. You will have a onetime opportunity to purchase cards only at time of check in. You will not be able to purchase them later.
Are breakfasts included with any of our ski pacakges?
No. During the past 20 years almost 100% of our families have indicated they do not see good value in adding the cost of breakfasts to their ackages. The Resorts would have to increase the price per person to add this product because of the significant discount we already get from a retail package. Families have kitchens in their units and do not want to have to go to a dining room for breakfast then return to change for the hill. The alternative to breakfasts that would increase the price to everyone, was to offer Dining Cards for Sunday River at a 20% discount. If you want breakfast included as part of your stay, then you cannot book through Van Wart Vacations and get the discounted rates; you would need to pay the higher package price (that far exceeds the cost of breakfast) through retail. The Dining Card offer is good for breakfast as well as any other meals, snacks, beverages (including alcholic beverages) anywhere at Sunday River so it is far more flexible and less expensive. (None of the other resorts offer Dining Cards and meals are not included with any of the other packages unless specifically requested and you are charged as an add on to your package).
How do I find out the balance on my Dining Card?
Simply call Sunday River at 1.800.543.2754. Give them the number on the back of your card and they will confirm your balance remaining.
I have a balance on my dining card from my ski trip. Can I use it at Sunday River during the summer?
Yes. You can use your dining card anytime at Sunday River. Please check the Special Offers page for a listing of restaurants open during the summer and winter months.
My family is vacationing at Sunday River this summer. Can I purchase dining cards for our summer stay?
Yes. Dining cards are available for your summer stay. $40 US will purchase a $50 US card (or Cdn equivalent if you pay in Cdn funds). There are fewer restaurants open during the summer so please check the Special Offers page to make sure you will use your card if you prepurchase it with your package.
Where can I learn more about the winter Dining Cards available at Sunday River?
Where can I store my skis?
Storage lockers are provided for all on-hill condominium guests. At the hotels, there is a storage service where you can check your skis at no charge. At Sunday River, if you are staying off mountain, or if you find it more convenient while staying on mountain, you can store your skis at Stor-A-Ski located at the South Ridge Base. Tell the attendant that you're with the Van Wart Groups and you will be be given Van Wart Vacations discount: 5 days / 4 nights for only $10 US per pair of skis Click Here. If you are booked at the Bethel Inn, the cost of your week's ski storage is provided complimentary with your stay. Equipment must not be stored in your condo or in your hotel suite.
How much are equipment rentals?
Prices will vary depending on age, type of equipment, duration of your rental and the resort. Click on the following link and it will take you to the "Lessons and Equipment Rentals" site for all of our resorts. You do not need to reserve equipment; all resorts have an excellent supply.
What if I damage the equipment?
Check with the agent at the time of payment. Typically, there is an automatic "waiver of damage" included with the rental cost, however, it will be your responsibility to confirm this with the resort for the week of your stay. Policies vary with duration of rental, type of equipment and the vacation period.
Can I take my ski equipment to my room?
No. All ski equipment must be stored in the locker at your condo or with the ski check at the hotel. If you are at the Bethel Inn, ski lockers are available with your townhouse or suite. Alternatively, you can store equipment all week at the ski storage located at the base of south ridge at Sunday River. Provide Stor - A - Ski with the complimentary ski coupons included with your package and you may store your skis on hill - complimentary pas part of your Bethel Inn stay.
Is there Internet / WiFi access at the resorts?
The Jordan Grand and Grand Summit hotels at Sunday River and the Sugarloaf Mountain Hotel and lobby of the Bethel Inn all have reliable and complimentary Internet access. Guests of staying at the Grand Summit Hotel please be sure to select Grand Summit (NOT Single Digits) as your connection to get the most efficient WiFi service. The Chateau Mont.Sainte.Anne in Quebec also offers complimentary WiFi access. Condo access at all resorts is hit or miss and not reliable so you will want to consider this when booking your stay. If having access to Intenet is critical for business purposes or an expected family emergency, let Bob know so that he can make a recommendation.
What happens if I do not get my deposit in right away or I am overdue with my Balance Remaining?
Unless specified in your booking, no units are held without a deposit guarantee and that guarantee must be in cleared funds. If you remit a deposit and your unit type is no longer available, your deposit will be cancelled and returned to you without any fees assessed by Van Wart Vacations if we cannot find you another suitable unit. If your Balance Remaining is late, then this is serious because we need to settle with the resorts and that means we must use our own financial resources to pay for the balance of your vacation. VanWart Vacations will issue you one complimentary reminder if your payment is not made by the due date. If your payment is still not made, we have the right to either cancel your booking with no return of deposit or if you do make your payment after repeated reminders, there is a $50 US fee ($50 Cdn for Quebec bookings) to cover our administration. If you paid by personal cheques then we need time to ensure your cheques clear the bank before we remit to the resort. If you paid in Cdn funds for a US package (Sugarloaf or Sunday River), then it is absolutely critical that you get your payment to us on or before the deadline specified in your confirmation. If you do not get funds to us by that date, then we will have to use our own financial resources to settle the US funds that we are purchasing on your behalf so that we can settle payments for your booking with the resorts in the US. If we have to send you a reminder because your balance is not paid by the due date, you will be assessed a $50 US administration fee for the notices we send and for having to settle contracts using our own financial resources. (The fee is $50 US or Cdn equivalent if you paid in Cdn funds).
How many free lessons are included with my package?
All guests age 15 and over receive (1) complimentary lesson for each day of their stay if you are staying on mountain at one of the US resorts. For guests booked off mountain, we cannot provide complimentary lessons, however, if you advise the attendants at the Welcome Centre that you are with Van Wart Vacations, then you will recieve a discount off some Perfect Turn clinics.
What time do the complimentary Adult ski lessons take place?
Lessons take place from the South Ridge area at 10:30 am or 1:15 pm. In your package you will have been provided with coupons for either morning or afternoon classes depending on availability.
I will not use all of my daily complimentary ski lessons. Can I give them to my kids? Or someone else?
No. Only ages 15 and above receive the complimentary daily lessons and you cannot transfer them to other guests. Not all packages qualify for the complimentary lessons and the resort cannot undertake the risk of having juniors participating in ski lessons with much older guests at different ski levels. The resort may request proof of age at the time of the lessons if there is any doubt regarding the age of the participant. They will not accept the liability risk associated with mixing very young skiers in with the more experienced and mature adult classes.
How do I receive my complimentary lessons?
Included with your vacation package at check in will be a coupon for each qualified guest. These cannot be transfered to another guest nor can they be used by guests under the age of 15. Arrive at the Skier Development area at South Ridge Base at least 20 minutes before your lesson time as noted on your coupon.
Do I need to prebook my complimentary lessons?
No. You will receive a coupon in your package for AM or PM lessons. These complimentary lessons cannot be prebooked. It is recommended you arrive at South Ridge where the lessons commence at least 15 minutes before the time on your coupons.
I will not use my complimentary lessons? Am I entitled to a refund?
No. The lessons are included with your package at no charge and they do not have any monetary value if you chose not to use them during your vacation.
MAINE ADAPTIVE SKI PROGRAM
Is there a program for skiers with disablities?
Yes. Sunday River and Sugarloaf are proud to be sponsors of Maine Adaptive Skiing, a free adaptive sports program providing people with physical disabilities the opportunity to Alpine and Nordic ski, ride and snowshoe in the winter and golf, paddle and cycle in the summer. MAS provides standard and adaptive ski, snowboard, and snowshoe equipment, warm winter clothing when needed and specially trained volunteers to instruct adults and children with physical disabilities, ages 4 and up. The organization provides over 1800 free adaptive lessons every winter at Sunday River from early January through March thanks to the help of over 390 volunteers. To learn more about Maine Adaptive Skiing, please visit Maine Adaptive Ski Program or call 800-639-7770.
Do I have to pre-register for the Maine Adaptive Ski Program?
Yes. You must complete an application and be pre-approved for the program. It is recommended that you allow at least 8 weeks to complete the application and approval process. You may visit their website at Maine Adaptive Ski Program. or call 800-639-7770.
Is the Maine Adaptive Ski program available at both Sunday River and Sugarloaf?
Yes. Both ski resorts provide access to the program.
Are any meals included with my ski vacation package?
No. Group packages are heavily discounted from the resort's retail rates for both hotels and condos. It you book a hotel package through the resort, they include the cost of daily breakfasts. Our families do not see the benefit of increasing the pacakge price (approximately $10 US average per person per day!) to provide breakfasts when everyone has a fully equipped kitchen. During low volume weeks, (ie non-spring break periods) they may offer specials that will include meals as part of the package, however, these must be booked through the resort at their retail rates. To keep the price low with group packages, no meals are included. Instead, we now offer Dining Cards - $80 US for a $100 US value card. Please see the link under Dining Cards for further information.
What does it mean to be a member of Van Wart Vacations?
Is night skiing available at any of the resorts?
There is no night skiing available at Sugarloaf Resort. Sunday River does offer night skiing, however, it is limited to high volume holiday periods and weekends. Weather conditions and anticipated traffic volumes will affect whether Sunday River offers night skiing. MSA resorts include night skiing; please go directly to their website for night skiing schedules (You may access this from the Van Wart Ski Groups home page). There is no night skiing at Le Massif.
Does my package include lift passes for night skiing?
This will depend on the resort you have chosen. For SL and SR, your package will not include night skiing. Due to the limited availability of night skiing, especially during the Canadian spring break weeks where there just has not been a high enough demand to warrant leaving the hill open through the evenings, your package will not include the cost of night skiing. However, in the event you are at the resort during a period when night skiing is offered, for only an additional small fee, you are able to upgrade your lift pass to extend it for night skiing for that day. For MSA your multi-mountain lift pass package includes night skiiing. There is no night skiing at Le Massif.
What if I am a non-skier?
If you are a non-skier and advised Bob, then your package price will have been reduced to reflect this. If you asked Bob to charge you full price for your package, then you will receive Sunday River or Sugarloaf money in lieu of a ski lift pass ($25 US per day per adult; $15 US per day per junior. Children do not pay for ski lift passes). If you did not advise Bob that you were a non-skier, then there will be a lift pass in your package. The resort will issue you ski guarantee coupons only; they will not issue Sunday River or Sugarloaf money at the hill.
When should I book my vacation package?
You should book your vacation package as soon as you have decided to ski or golf at one or more of our resorts. Availability for some periods will be limited and due to popularity, some locations will book quickly.
Will the price of my package be the same regardless of when I book?
No. Different ski weeks will have different prices due to demand and availability. Golf prices will also vary depending on weekend or mid-week golf and type of accommodations. Bob will provide you with an indicative price once you have provided him with sufficient detail to provide a temporary confirmation.
Will the price of my vacation package be the same regardless of when I book?
Typically, prices for the various spring breaks are set at the beginning of the season and rarely change. The resorts do retain the right to increase prices at any time in the event demand or circumstances change. If you have already booked and guaranteed your vacation package and have received your confirmation with the notation "Rate is guaranteed", your price is set and there will be no change. You are guaranteed your price once you have a deposit guarantee in place and it has been reviewed and processed. If you guarantee your booking after there has been a price increase, then you will pay the increased package price.
Is there a wine and cheese reception?
If you booked a spring break package for NB/QUE/NS/ON/PEI, for the upcoming ski season, we are hosting a private event at the Jordan Grand Hotel. Please check out the Table Top Olympics page on our website for further information. This event is free and all participants will be from the Van Wart Ski Group. Any wine and cheese reception at the Summit is being hosted for the smaller groups and families who are not part of Van Wart Vacations.
Do I need my Confirmation?
Yes. As a member of Van Wart Vacations, you will receive a confirmation at time of booking and periodic updates every time there is a payment or change made to your package. When you arrive at the resort, you should have the last confirmation sent to you. If you do not have your confirmation and your booking differs from what you expected, it is difficult to make your check-in go smoothly. The resort must work with the information Bob sent them as detailed in your confirmation.
When is my package price guaranteed:
Due to the number of variables in booking a ski vacation (for example, US or Canadian funds, date of the exchange rate guarantee, the option for all resorts to change pricing at any time, whether you pay by cheque or Interac eTransfer, or emails that you send subsequent to an initial booking or quote to name a few), your package price is not guaranteed until you receive a confirmation that states "Rate is guaranteed". Sending payment through any of the channels available does not guarantee your package price until such time as Van Wart Vacations has confirmed your package price against your payment. Delays with the Interac eTransfer system, mail system or having envelopes couriered all may result in timing differences that could change the price of your package. Every effort is made to ensure this does not happen, however, Van Wart Vacations reserves the absolute right at all times to advise our families that the rate quoted may not stand and any payments will be returned / immediately cancelled or refunded at no cost to the family. Once you receive confirmation that your payment has been processed and your "Rate is guaranteed", then there will be no changes to your price unless you initiate them and Van Wart Vacations will stand behind all "Rate guarantees".
What payment methods are available to pay for my vacation?
You can pay by way of personal cheque, bank draft, or through OnLine banking using email transfers (Interac) or Hyperwallet. You can pay in either US or Canadian funds, however, if you elect to pay using Email Transfers (the most popular), or Hyperwallet, then you must pay in Canadian funds. We are not able to accept any form of Credit Cards for payments at this time. We also reserve the right to decline acceptance of personal cheques at any time. We are required to pay resorts in cleared funds (ie guaranteed funds that we are not able to recover under any circumstances). If you have paid by way of personal cheques then without exception you must have your payments to us by the deadline. We will not be obligated to accept personal cheques if they are not in our hands for processing by the date specified in your confirmation.
Do I have a choice to pay in US or Canadian funds?
Yes. This is an option you select at time of payment. Bob will provide you with both a US and Canadian price. Once you select the currency of your choice, that is locked in and cannot be changed later. If you select Canadian, then Bob will have locked in that rate at time of payment and you will not experience any fluctuation in exchange. If you select US funds, then Bob will not have any guarantee on the exchange rate and you will be responsible to purchase your package at whatever the rate is your bank offers you at the time. You will be resonsible for any fluctuations (positive or negative). Click here to go to the BNS website OR click here to go to the RBC website OR Click here to go to the TD website for indicative exchange rates only. Please note: These rates will vary somewhat with each of the major chartered Banks and they are constantly changing. This will give you an overview of what you may expect to pay if you purchase all of your US funds today. The rate you are provided with Van Wart Vacations is a rate set many months / weeks forward; not the rate at the bank today.
I chose to pay for my package in US funds. What happens now?
You have fewer payment options available to lock in your unit. You will need to purchase US funds to pay for the balance of your package at whatever exchange rate your bank offers you. You will need to courier or mail your personal US cheque or bank draft to Bob Van Wart, at your expense. Due to scheduling challenges and guest schedules, we cannot accommodate or pre-arrange payment deliveries to our home. Your booking cannot be guaranteed until Bob receives your payment; all units are booked on a first come / first served basis.
I chose to pay for my package in Canadian funds. What happens now?
You have far more payment options available to you to guarantee your unit right away. You can send a personal cheque, bank draft, use OnLine Email transfers or Hyperwallet from your home computer. Your exchange rate is locked in and guaranteed and there will be no changes regardless of whether the Canadian dollar strengthens or weakens. If you pay using OnLine Interac / Email transfers or Hyperwallet, you can guarantee your unit within minutes of sending Bob your transfer. Mailing cheques or drafts will delay your payment and could mean the unit gets reassigned to another family who paid electonically. Unfortunately, due to our experience with guest schedules, we can no longer pre-arrange or accommodate payment deliveries to our home. Once you select a currency, then your package and any add-ons or changes must be in that same currency. Packages cannot have part US or part Canadian funds; only all US or all Canadian. If you cancel any portion of your booking, then you will be responsible to cover any exchange loss over $2 since your original US funds will still need to be purchased, then sold back to the bank at a much lower purchase rate.
I need to change my package and paid in Canadian funds. What happens now?
Email Bob. If you reduce your package price, then you will need to pay the exchange on the difference in the US price. Bob would have locked in a rate on the initial package price and you will need to offset any exchange difference if it exceeds $2. Similarly, if you increase the price of your package, then you will pay the exchange rate applicable to the date of the change - not the original exchange rate since it will likely have changed since your original booking date.
When are my payments due?
Your first payment, your deposit, is due at time of booking. Your final payment is due depending on the type of package you booked and will be indicated on your confirmation. You will be issued an updated confirmation for every payment made. For the NB/QUE/NS/ON/PEI spring breaks, all payments must be received by Bob before February 1st. FOR ALL BOOKINGS IT IS CRITICAL THAT YOU HAVE YOUR FINAL PAYMENT TO BOB BY THE DATE INDICATED ON YOUR CONFIRMATION, ESPECIALLY IF YOU PAID BY PERSONAL CHEQUE AND/OR IN CDN FUNDS. IF YOU DO NOT HAVE YOUR PAYMENT IN ON TIME THEN WE WILL NOT HAVE THE FUNDS TO SETTLE YOUR PART OF OUR US CONTRACTS. IF VANWART VACATIONS IS REQUIRED TO FATE YOU FOR YOUR PAYMENT THEN WE WILL BE OBLIGED TO CHARGE A $50 US (OR CDN EQUIVALENT) ADMINISTRATION FEE SINCE WE WILL HAVE TO USE OUR OWN FINANCIAL RESOURCES TO COVER THE PURCHASE OF US FUNDS FOR YOUR BOOKING. IF YOU PAID BY PERSONAL CHEQUES THEN WE NEED THE TIME TO ENSURE WE HAVE CLEARED FUNDS AS NOTED ABOVE.
What are the advantages of using the Interac system through my OnLine Banking?
All of the major banks, PC Financial, ING Direct, Manulife Banking and many credit unions now provide the Interac service. Most include it as part of your regular service charge. Others charge from $1. to $1.50. While it limits your payment to Canadian funds, it is a very cost effective and efficient way to pay. All units must have "cleared" funds. This means that if you pay by mailing a personal cheque, it will take at least 3 days to arrive. We also require at least 10 business days for your cheque to clear your bank account before we can guarantee your unit. During that 12 - 14 day period, your unit may and if there is limited supply, will be booked to others who pay using Interac. They will get priority over your unit and your cheque will be returned if we cannot find a suitable alternative unit. It is critical that the balance of your booking be paid with cleared funds as well. If you get busy or are traveling, any delays could result in a cancellation due to non-payment or non-receipt of your cheque in time to clear funds and remit to the resort. Having Interac set up enables you to send payments within minutes of receiving a reminder from Bob. If you add guests last minute, even up to the day before your date of scheduled arrival, in an emergency, Bob can add lift passes at group rates as long as you can send the payment via Interac. If you have paid by cheque, this is not possible after 14 days prior to your scheduled date of arrival. Any refunds due to cancellations or changes in your booking can be arranged same day if you use Interac. For cheques, it could take up to a month or two for Bob to have the accounting reconciled with the resort to issue you a cheque refund. PLEASE NOTE THAT AT ANY TIME VANWART VACATIONS HAS THE RIGHT TO DECLINE ACCEPTANCE OF PERSONAL CHEQUES IF IN OUR SOLE DISCRETION IT IS DEEMED NECESSARY GIVEN OUR HISTORY WITH A FAMILY OR IF THERE ARE OTHER CIRCUMSTANCES THAT WE BELIEVE REQUIRES OUR GUESTS TO REMIT PAYMENTS BY WAY OF BANK DRAFTS OR INTERAC ONLY.
What are Family Referral Awards?
When you refer a new family to Van Wart Vacations (ie they have not previously booked with us), once they make a non-refundable deposit guarantee on a vacation package, you will be credited with one family referral. Please check the Referral page for a sample of awards that are available for one or multiple family referrals.
I have one family referral for this season but I know I'll have more next year. Can I hold over this year's referral?
Yes. A record of your referral is held and if you add referrals in another season, they will be combined so that you can select from all of the prizes (ie skis, vacation stays on PEI and the other larger awards). You do not need to claim one referral award in the year you make the referral.
SKIING and SKI GUARANTEE COUPONS
What if I don't want to ski every day? Can I reduce the cost of my package and ski fewer days?
For the US Canadian Spring Break weeks, no. If you book a 5-day spring break package, they you must either book a 5-day lift pass or make arrangements with Bob Van Wart in advance to cancel your lift passes altogether and that will reduce the cost of your package. However, if you cancel your lift pass in advance when you arrive at the resort, there will be no lift pass included for your stay. If you wish to ski after arrival, then you will need to pay full retail price for each day you choose to ski. You cannot get the Van Wart Groups discount once you arrive at the resort. In Quebec and for the non-Canadian Spring Break weeks, you can have a 5 night stay and any number of ski days - you do not need to book a 5 day pass with a 5 night stay. For example, you can book a 5 night stay and a 2 day lift pass. Please note again that if you ski at Sunday River or Sugarloaf as part of our 4 or 5 night package, during a Canadian spring break week, then you must match the number of nights lodging with the number of days lift pass in your package.
Is night skiing included with my package?
No. Night skiing is not included with any of our packages unless specifically pre-arranged and noted on your confirmation. Night Skiing is limited to Friday and Saturdays only at Sunday River. For MSA, night skiing is included at both mountains if your package includes the multi-resort pass. Le Massif does not offer night skiing nor does Sugarloaf.
Can I ski on Sunday?
If you arranged a mid-week Canadian spring break ski package with Sugarloaf or Sunday River, your confirmation will indicate that there is complimentary skiing Sunday afternoon. These lift passes commence at 12 Noon on the day of your arrival (Sunday afternoon or Monday afternoon - as long as you booked at least a 4-night stay). If you booked another time, then complimentary skiing on Sunday afternoon is not included. Your confirmation will be specific regarding your ski days. For MSA, your confirmation will provide specifics regarding the ski days included with your package.
I am not skiing Sunday afternoon. Will I receive a refund or lower cost to my package?
For Canadian spring break mid week packages, Sunday afternoon skiing is complimentary as part of the promotional 4 or 5-day spring break package only for Sugarloaf and Sunday River. There is no refund or reduction in price if you decide not to ski on Sunday afternoon. If you booked a package for other times of the year, if you did not specify you wanted to ski on Sunday, then you would not have been charged. If you booked a package for 3 nights or less during a Canadian Spring Break week then complimentary Sunday afternoon skiing is not included.
What If I chose not to ski every day after I arrive at the resort?
Commencing with the 2017 ski season, for Sunday River and Sugarloaf only, there are some situations where you may be issued a snow guarantee coupon for the next season. If the snow conditions are poor, the US resorts will issue you a snow guarantee coupon that can be turned in against the cost of your spring break vacation package the following season ($25 US per Adult; $15 US per Junior and Senior lift passes if received prior to February 1st). These must be used against the cost of a 4 or 5 day lift and lodging package where you are staying at one of the resort managed properties. For example, at Sunday River you must be staying at the Grand Summit Hotel, the Jordan Grand Hotel or the Snow Cap Inn during one of the Canadian spring break weeks; if you book 3 days or less, or any other time of the season, we cannot give you credit for Ski Guarantee Coupons regardless of whether the property is a Resort managed location - to get credit, you must book at least a 4 day package. For some Cdn Spring break weeks, the minimum package is 5 days. Bob will review this with you at the time of booking. If you decide to shop or just relax by the pool for the day, there are no snow guarantee coupons issued. The coupons are intended to protect us from poor snow / ski conditions only. If conditions are good and you chose to go shopping, then the resort will not issue you a snow guarantee. To obtain the snow guarantee coupon, you must turn in your lift pass to the front desk of your hotel or for Snow Cap Inn guests, to the Welcome Centre at the Base Lodge area before 10:00 on the day the conditions are too poor to ski. These coupons have an expiry date. They must be used at the issuing resort prior to the expiry date to have any retail value. Or, send to Bob for credit against your next season's package subject to the conditions noted above. For Mont.Sainte.Anne, Stoneham and Le Massif, there are no ski guarantee coupons issued; you must use your pass during your stay; no ski days or ski credit may be carried over to the following season.
What do I do with my snow guarantee coupons from last year?
For coupons issued during the 2016 ski season, Sunday River Ski resort and Sugarloaf will issue you a coupon that is worth a substantial US discount against the full retail price a lift pass, subject to the terms, conditions and expiry dates on the coupons. You can send any unused coupons to Bob Van Wart anytime prior to January 31st, 2017 and they will be applied against the value of your Canadian Spring break week 4 or 5 day package for the 2017 ski season. These can be applied only against a package for the resort that issued them ($25 US per Adult; $15 US per Junior and Senior lift passes). Ski Guarantee coupons issued by Sunday River must be used at Sunday River; Ski guarantee coupons issued at Sugarloaf must be used at Sugarloaf. They are not interchangeable. The snow guarantee coupons cannot be used directly at the resort beyond their expiry date and must be sent to Bob Van Wart prior to February 1st of the following year to apply them against your 4 or 5 day Canadian spring break package at the resort that issued them. If you are issued SGC by Sunday River Ski Resort for the upcoming 2017 ski season, to get the $25 / $15 US credit against your 2018 package, you must book a Sunday River managed lodging and lift package (ie at the Grand Summit Hotel, Jordan Grand Hotel or Snow Cap Inn). If in 2018 you book a slopeside condo or one of the properties not managed by Sunday River, then you will not be able to apply the SGC against your package. You will need to redeem them onsite at Sunday River before the expiry date. This will give you a discount from their retail rates. Similarly for Sugarloaf Ski Resort - all Ski Guarantee Coupons must be turned into Bob prior to February 1st and used for a lift / lodging package for one of the accommodations listed on our "Sugarloaf Condominiums" page with the Van Wart Vacations.com site.
What happens if I send my ski guarantee coupons after February 1st of the following ski season?
There may still be an opportunity to provide you with partial credit for the coupons. Because of exchange rates (for Canadian currency bookings) and payment guarantees made to the resort after February 1st, (all bookings - US or Cdn currency), there may not be any way to provide you with value for the coupons. If you have not sent them to Bob prior to February 1st, then they may not be of any value. Please discuss your options with Bob Van Wart. They have no value at the resort after the expiry date.
What is Sunday River money and Sugarloaf money?
If you have a non-skier in your family and if you have paid the full package price for their stay, then Bob will arrange to have their lift pass replaced with resort money that can be spent at the hill. The money cannot be used to purchase a lift pass at the hill. If you decide to ski, then you will need to pay the full posted resort price for lift passes using a credit card, cash, or other means - just not the resort money included with your package. Most often, Bob will reduce the price of your package instead of issuing resort money; you typically save more and you don't need to worry about spending it while on vacation. Resort money expires and must be used during your stay. Your confirmation will indicate whether your package price has been reduced or if you will receive resort issued money.
TRIP CANCELLATION INSURANCE
Does my package include Trip Cancellation Insurance or Travel Medical Insurance?
No. There are no insurance coverages included with your package. Neither Van Wart Vacations nor the resorts provide any trip cancellation or travel medical insurance. You must arrange these coverages yourself.
Where can I get Trip Cancellation Insurance or Travel Medical Insurance?
There are a number of suppliers you can access through the Internet. Simply type "Trip Cancellation Insurance" in your search engine and you can source your own supplier. It is recommended you check with your Credit Card supplier first. They may provide coverage if you use your card for gas, overnight accommodations in Bangor, meals, etc. You should also check with your employer to see if your health plan covers you for an extended out of country stay. You may also click on the following links to get a quote from the RBC Travel Insurance Website or the CIBC Travel Insurance Website. Please note, Van Wart Vacations, RBC and CIBC Travel Insurance are not in any way associated. Van Wart Vacations package you have booked is independent of any insurance you arrange with RBC or CIBC or any other provider. Van Wart Vacations provides you with this link as a gratuitous service only and accepts no liability for any arrangements you may make with these or any other insurance provider.
Is there a bus or other means of transportation arranged by Van Wart Vacations to take us to our resort?
No. All families booked with Van Wart Vacations travel to the resort of choice on their own. Van Wart Vacations only arrange your ski / golf and stay packages at the US resorts and negotiate rates on your behalf ot hotels in Bangor.
My family is staying at the Bethel Inn. Will we need to drive our vehicle to the Sunday River Ski Resort?
No. You may leave your vehicle parked at Bethel Inn and take the trolley to/from the Sunday River Ski Resort. The Bethel Inn has a brochure you can obtain from the front desk; it will provide you with the trolley times. If you wish to drive your own vehicle, you will need to arrive early (1/2 hour before lift times) to secure a spot in the overflow parking area that is reasonably close to the Welcome Centre
Is there a shuttle service at the resort?
Yes. All resorts have an efficient shuttle service that will take you to and from the resort to your lodgings and to other locations within the resorts (friends, restaurants, etc).
Do I need a ski lift pass to ride the Chondola?
You do not need to pay the price of a full ski lift pass; Chondola only lift passes are $15 US per day and give you access to the Chondola at Sunday River only.
I just want to dine at the North Peak Lodge at Sunday River. Do I need a lift pass?
Yes. You must purchase a Chondola lift pass at $15 US per day.
What are the driving times to the resort?
Time of day and weather conditions will be factors, however, if you have stayed overnight in Bangor, allow up to 3 hours to drive to the resort. If you are driving directly to the resort from Nova Scotia or PEI, allow up to 11 hours. From New Brunswick or Quebec, allow up to 8 hours. Mapquest is a great resource to calculate driving times and best routes to take directly from your home. Click here to access Mapquest.
What happens if a storm or road conditions delay my arrival?
All guests are responsible for arriving at the resort to check in on their scheduled date of arrival. If weather delays your arrival, there are no refunds, extensions or credits available. It is highly recommended that you watch the weather forecasts and if there is a likelihood of snow or conditions that would delay your arrival, you may wish to consider leaving your province a day early and staying overnight in Bangor an extra night. All of our hotel suppliers in Bangor will provide you with Van Wart Vacations rates any time during the winter months there is availability. This will make for a more manageable drive to Sunday River or Sugarloaf on your check in date.
What happens if I don't ski on a day when the weather is bad?
Please refer to the section above under "Skiing and Ski Guarantee Coupons".
OTHER PLANNING TIPS
I have questions that are not answered in the Group Policies. Where do I go?
Please email Bob Van Wart at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or go to either the Contact Us page or the Ski page, click on email and send your question(s) to Bob. They will be answered within 48 hours.
Should I do my shopping in Bangor (Groceries, ski equipment, other)?
It's always useful to check the exchange rates you will pay in the US first. If the Cdn dollar is close to par, then buying all of your groceries or other shopping in Bangor can be less expensive. For non-grocery items, remember to check your exemption Limits (see the Canada Customs link above). If you're hoping to get a bargain on ski boots, equipment or other ski related goods, you probably only have a couple of hours of free time to shop on your way down. If you're hoping for a bargain on boots and don't have a backup pair with you, you may be forced to buy something you don't want or that may not be as good a deal as you may have been able to get in Canada. There are deals to be had, however, time of season, sizes, colors, safety features, etc all make your 2 - 3 hour timeframe more stressful. You don't want to arrive at the resort and have to rent or be forced into buying something you are not happy with. Remember to ask for the Macy's International Card at their location in Bangor.
Should I arrange trip cancellation and / or travel medical insurance?
Yes. If you do not have personal coverage through your employer, a credit card or some other plan, then both coverages are highly recommended. The resort cancellation policies are strictly adhered to. If you do not have a source for coverage, you can inquire about insurance coverage at the CIBC Travel Insurance Website or by calling direct at their toll free number 1-800-281-9109 to obtain a quote.
Where can I shop in Bangor?
The Bangor Mall is a favorite of Van Wart Vacations families. When shopping at Macy's, ask for the International Card Discount (10%).
Can I bring pets to the resort.
No. Pets are not allowed at the resort and you will be charged a cleaning fee against your credit card provided at check in if you bring pets.
How can I pay household bills while I'm away?
If you have OnLine Banking you can set up bill payments to be paid while you're away. If you don't have OnLine Banking, check with your banker. Most include the service as part of your standard monthly service charge. Once on the system, you can create "alerts" that let you know when your bills have been paid.
Should I contact my credit card suppliers?
It's always a good idea to let them know when you're traveling. You would not want to be held up making purchases because your credit card supplier felt the activity on your account was suspicious or out of the ordinary.
Is there Internet access at the resort?
The Jordan Grand, Grand Summit, Sugarloaf Mountain Hotel and the lobby of the Bethel Inn all have reliable Internet access. Condo access is hit or miss and not reliable so you will want to consider this when booking your stay. If having access to Internet is critical for business purposes or an expected family emergency, let Bob know so that he can make a recommendation.
How can my family reach me at the resort?
Sunday River: 1.800.543.2754; Sugarloaf:1.800.643.8231; Bethel Inn:1.800.654.1025
Can you recommend anything else I should do before I leave home?
Garbage - Arrange to have someone put it out; Driveway - Arrange to have someone shovel; Flyers - Cancel them; a dead giveaway the house is not occupied; Newspapers - Cancel for the same reason. Ask them to credit you with these days; Mail - If not in a central box, have someone recover it; Fun - Plan to have lots of fun and family time with our group!
Can we arrange a pot luck at the common area in our condo or hotel?
Requests for pot luck and group events in common areas must be arranged directly with the resort. Call 1.800.543.2754 and advise them what you would like to arrange. The resort will guide you from that point. No formal events are arranged directly with Van Wart Vacations other than our private event at the Jordan Grand hosted by Van Wart Vacations each Monday evening.