NSAA Announces Conversion Cup Challenge Winners

The National Ski Areas Association (NSAA) announced the winners of its Conversion Cup Challenge at the association’s annual National Convention held in Nashville, Tennessee, last week.

The friendly competition among member resorts, sponsored by Head, recognizes those who make significant efforts to boost skier and snowboarder conversion rates.

Some parameters judges look for when making their selections:

  • Increase in Level 1 lesson volumes
  • Level 1 lesson volumes in relation to total skier and snowboarder visits
  • Quantifiable success of multi-lesson packages
  • Season-to-date sales data on specific learn-to packages designed to drive repeat visitation
  • Overall data collection capabilities and sophistication
  • Marketing ingenuity, creativity, use of new media, etc.


Snowbasin Resort Co., Utah

Snowbasin’s “Learn and Earn” is chock full of discounts and freebies for new snowboarders and skiers. The program started in the 2015–16 season and has generated over 16,000 participants.

Year one includes three lessons, an equipment rental package and a season pass. Year two includes three more lessons and a seasonal equipment rental package the guest can purchase at the end of the year. Over time, the average return rate of Learn and Earn participants for the subsequent season is 67 percent.


Palisades Tahoe, California 

The Alpine Meadows side of Palisades Tahoe Resort Perfect Progression Program is designed as a two-year package with lots discounts and incentives. The target is to get new customers skiing and riding comfortably on intermediate terrain and to purchase a season pass.

The graduation rate (completing all three lessons) for the 2021–22 season was an impressive 80 percent. Year two features three more lessons, a season pass, 50 percent off equipment rentals and a free beanie. PPP is a growing portion of the snowsports school, representing 55 percent of beginner lessons.

Ski Saint-Bruno, Quebec

Learning through play is a cornerstone of Ski Saint-Bruno’s Evolution Trail, a learning area specifically designed for new skiers and snowboarders. The trail has specialized zones for step-by-step learning to be either self-taught or instructor taught. The Evolution Package includes four lessons, equipment rentals, and lift tickets.

The self-guided option provides lift access, on-site guidance/signage, and roving instructors. Almost all (96 percent) of Evolution Package participants completed the second lesson, and 32 percent completed all four lessons (only 10 percent of the self-guided participants completed all four lessons).

Winter4Kids, New Jersey 

Winter4Kids is dedicated to sharing snowsports with kids from New York City. The ski hill is a private facility in New Jersey, and is 100 percent committed to introducing children aged 6–17 to different types of sliding on snow.

Participants are introduced to winter sports in two lessons each in downhill skiing, cross-country skiing and snowboarding. After six lessons, the student selects the equipment they want to use. Transportation is provided, clothing is supplied, and healthy meals are served. The program hosts over 10,000 kids per year. The annual return rate is 62 percent.