What is a ski or snowboard internship?
A WE ARE SNO instructor internship is an all-inclusive, season-long instructor course which gives passionate skiers and snowboarders a fast-track route into the snowsports industry. You can expect world-class professional tuition, internationally recognised instructor qualifications and a fully paid instructor job offer for the winter season. This is the ultimate winter experience where you can train, qualify and work all in the same unforgettable season.
How do I apply?
The first step is to complete the eligibility form on our website. You will initially be asked to answer five basic questions, you will then be asked for your contact details (name & email). Once received a member of our team will be in touch within 24 hours to introduce themselves and discuss our awesome products in more detail.
What are the costs involved?
The total cost of each course will vary depending on the location and the level of training/qualification available. For a full list of up-to-date pricing please visit our pricing page located in the resources section of our website.
What are the payment plans you offer?
If you are eligible and accepted onto one of our courses then an initial deposit payment equal to 10% of the total course fees is required. We try to be as flexible as possible when it comes to the remaining fees and are happy to spread them out into monthly, bi-monthly or quarterly instalment options.
One of the most important questions you should be asking is what is included in your package and how is it broken down. We have a comprehensive inclusions table on each of our resort pages and our pricing page to let you know exactly where your money is going.
Are there any age restrictions?
Depending on which course you choose there are some restrictions on age. To be considered for our internship product in Canada or Japan you must be eligible for a working holiday visa. This application process is usually only open to people between the ages of 18-30, with some exceptions depending on nationality and personal situation.
What qualifications are available?
All of the qualifications offered on our courses are internationally recognised and internationally interchangeable. The national qualification body will vary depending on the country location of your course. Detailed information can be found in the qualifications section of our website under resources.
What is the course duration?
Our internship product runs for the majority of a winter season. Courses that start in November usually finish March and courses that start in December usually finish in April.
What ability level is required?
We require participants to be able to comfortably link turns (under control) down an intermediate pitched slope. If you are unsure about your ability level then please get in touch, our team will be happy to discuss your options.
Do you include flights?
We don't include flights on our courses and our pricing reflects this. We do have an exclusive partnership with STA Travel who provide a personalised travel service for all of our UK and Australian clients. They offer assistance with flexible and discounted group flights and are always on hand to answer any travel related questions.
Do I need insurance?
Yes, you are required as part of our T&C's to have a comprehensive winter sports insurance policy for the duration of the course. As with flights, our partners at STA Travel will provide advice on a number of different cover options to suit your budget.
What happens if I get injured?
One of the many reasons you are required to take out an insurance policy is to to cover any medical costs and/or any course components you may miss by having to cancel a course. You should always ensure that the level of cover offered by a particular insurer is adequate for your requirements.
Do I need my own equipment?
As a trainee instructor you will be required to own your own equipment. As part of our pre course communication we will provide you with a detailed equipment guide and exclusive discounts with one of the largest online snowsports retailers.
Where can I find reviews from past clients?
We actually have an area of our website dedicated to reviews and testimonials. Just look for the "REVIEWS" tab in the search bar at the top of each page.
Why haven't I heard of skiing or riding in Japan?
Snowsports are massive in Japan, with thousands of powder hunters heading there each season. Whilst not the most obvious destination, more and more Europeans are now traveling to Japan. The appeal of reliable powder snow, an authentic travel experience and the promise of delicious cuisine is more than tempting. Fun fact...Japan has more ski resorts than any other country in the world!
I can't speak Japanese, is this a problem?
Absolutely not, our partners in Japan run international ski schools with English speaking lessons. The award-winning resorts we operate in have a huge demand for English-speaking instructors. Each season thousands of Australian, Kiwi and English speaking Asian guests arrive in Japan. A lot of the bars and restaurants are owned and operated by expats so there is no need to worry about the language or culture.
Do I need a work visa?
Yes, you will require a working holiday visa for Japan. If accepted onto a course then we will provide you with guidance and support to help you secure your visa. The visa cost is minimal but you will need to travel in person to the Japanese embassy in your home country to submit your application.
What qualifications do you offer in Japan?
We work with the New Zealand ski and snowboard governing body (NZSIA/SBINZ) in Japan. These certifications are highly regarded and recognised internationally. They allow you to work as an instructor in countries such as Japan, New Zealand, Australia, USA, Canada and large parts of Europe.
How does the job offer work?
Probably the most important element of the internship is the job offer, we work hard to set up employment opportunities that will give you a head start in the snowsports industry. Once the training programme is complete and providing you pass the level one exam you will receive a job offer and transition into employment with one of our partner schools in Niseko. Gaining practical teaching experience as a ski or snowboard instructor and earning a full-time wage once qualified is what sets us apart from other providers.
How much can I expect to earn?
Wages in Japan are very competitive for a first reason (rookie) instructor. You could expect to earn approximately ¥1,600 p/h.
Who goes to Japan?
The majority of our courses in Japan are filled with people from the UK, Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Canada. We tend to find most people are between the ages of 18 and 28, but sometimes we get applicants slightly older.
How much spending money would I need?
This can be a difficult question to answer as each interns spending habits can be very different. We always recommend a good buffer to cover any expenses during the training period and for your first month of accommodation once employed. The visa application states that you need to have proof of funds of ¥350,000 or ¥215,000 and a return ticket to enter the country, this is usually a good amount.
I can't speak French or German, is this a problem?
Absolutely not, our partners in Verbier will be delivering all of your training in English. On top of that any lessons that you teach once qualified will be to English speakers. As part of the course we do include French lessons, should you want to improve your knowledge of the local language.
Do I need a work visa?
This course is only available to citizens of the UK and EU states, you don't need to apply for a visa prior to the course starting.
Can I work in the same season?
Yes you have the opportunity to transition into full-time ski instruction directly after the 10 week training programme finishes. Anyone who shows a desire to work for the remainder of the season must attend an interview. It is worth noting that you will have already completed 70 hours of instructor shadowing with the ski school as part of your BASI qualification. Everyone who has interviewed from the course has been successful in securing employment.
What qualifications do you offer in Europe?
We work with the British ski governing body (BASI) in Europe. These certifications are highly regarded and recognised internationally. They allow you to work as an instructor in countries such as Switzerland, Japan, New Zealand, Australia, USA, Canada and other areas of Europe.
How much can I expect to earn?
As part of the employment package after the training programme you could expect to earn between 500-600CHF p/w.
Who goes to Europe?
This course is filled mostly with people from the UK and areas of Europe. We tend to find most people are between the ages of 18 and 30, but sometimes we get applicants slightly older.
How much spending money would I need?
This can be a difficult question to answer as each interns spending habits can be very different. We always recommend a good buffer to cover any expenses during the training period. The training in Verbier lasts for 10 weeks so a good starting point would be a weekly budget of around 350 CHF.