updated 10/28/2008 9:17:30 AM ET 2008-10-28T13:17:30

Here's how to ski affordably in California, Colorado, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Whistler, B.C.

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Crested Butte, Colo., from $125 per room per night
Book the "stay and ski for free" package from the Elk Mountain Lodge: accommodations in a room with a king bed and a mountain view, breakfast daily, and lift tickets for two days (lift tickets are valued at $118). Crested Butte is about an hour south of Aspen. Rates start at $125 per room per night, or $250 for the required two-night stay.

When: Nov. 26–Dec. 17, 2008.

Details: Does not include taxes of 14 percent. Based on double occupancy; no single bookings. Requires a two-night stay. Lift tickets must be preordered at least three days prior to arrival.

Contact: 800/374-6521, elkmountainlodge.net.

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Whistler, B.C., from $147 per room per night
The Book Early and Save promotion includes a four-day lift ticket (a $261 value per person) and a five-night stay. The package rate is available at a few properties in Whistler Village: Holiday Inn SunSpree, Tantalus Resort Lodge, and Best Western Listel Whistler. Whistler.com is the resort town's official tourism site, where you can browse lots of packages. You'll save 35 percent with this early-season package. Rates start at $147 per room per night, or $735 for the required five-night stay.

Book by: Nov. 15, 2008.

When: Nov. 27–Dec. 19, 2008.

Details: Does not include taxes of 20 percent. Based on double occupancy. Single occupancy rates vary depending on the hotel; call for details. Requires a five-night stay. Kids 12 and under ski and rent equipment free; kids 13 and up are charged the adult rate.

Contact: 800/944-7853, whistler.com.

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Waterville Valley, N.H., from $154 per room per night
About a two-hour drive from Boston, Waterville Valley Resorts are offering the Snow-vember/December Kick-off package. Two nights' accommodations and a two-day lift ticket (a value of $61) are included. You can choose from three hotels in the area: Black Bear Lodge, Golden Eagle Lodge, and the Snowy Owl Inn. You might want to time your visit to the Northern Lights fireworks celebration on November 28. Rates start at $154 per room per night, or $308 for the required two-night stay.

When: Nov. 1–Dec. 21, 2008.

Details: Does not include taxes of 8 percent. Based on double or single occupancy. Kids under 18 stay for free.

Contact: 800/468-2553, visitwatervillevalley.com.

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Dixville Notch, N.H., from $178 per room per night
The Ski Free package at the Balsams Grand Resort covers accommodations, breakfast daily, lift tickets (a $66 value), and trail passes (a $30 value) for cross-country skiing. The resort is in New Hampshire's White Mountains, about four hours by car from Boston. Rates start at $178 per room per night.

When: Jan. 1–March 31, 2009; excludes all holidays.

Details: Does not include taxes of 23 percent. Based on double occupancy; single occupancy rates start at $139 per room per night. Use promo code SKIFREE. Sunday through Thursday bookings only.

Contact: 877/225-7267, thebalsams.com.

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Glenwood Springs, Colo., from $186 per room per night
Sunlight Mountain Resort has a Ski, Swim & Stay package that includes accommodations, two adult lift tickets (a $100 value), and two adult passes to the Hot Springs Pool (a $34 value). You'll save 10 percent when you book these all together. We identified the $186 rate at the Starlight Lodge, but there are a bunch of hotels participating; check the reservations tool for more options.

When: Dec. 5, 2008–April 5, 2009.

Details: Does not include taxes of 11 percent. Based on double occupancy; single occupancy rates start at $131 per room per night. Kids under 18 stay free but will have to pay for lift tickets and pool passes. Some properties include breakfast, although the Starlight Lodge does not.

Contact: Glenwood Springs Chamber & Resort Association, 888/445-3696, glenwoodchamber.com.

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Smugglers' Notch, Vt., from $230 per room per night
The Club Smugglers' Advantage package provides accommodations in a mountainside condo with a kitchen, as well as daily lift tickets (a five-day lift ticket is normally $254 per person). You can take advantage of free activities at the resort, such as daily ski and snowboard camp, lessons for kids and adult beginners, and guided walks and hikes. Plus, the FunZone family entertainment center has ping-pong tables, slides, a pool, and a hot tub. You'll also receive free lift tickets valid for a future visit (through December 19, 2009). Smugglers' Notch is about an hour outside of Burlington, Vt. Rates start at $230 per room per night, or $1,150 for the required five-night stay. This exact package is also available for shorter stays (two to four nights), starting at $250 per room per night.

When: Dec. 12–20, 2008; Jan. 4–15, Jan 19–24, March 20–April 4, 2009. Other weekends are available at a higher rate.

Details: All taxes included. Based on double occupancy; no single bookings.

Contact: 800/419-4615, smuggs.com.

Walkable City: Burlington, Vt.

Mammoth Lakes, Calif., from $270 per room per night
The Mammoth Mountain Lift & Lodging package includes a three-day lift ticket (a $166 value) and accommodations. The resort is near Yosemite National Park, about a five-hour drive from San Francisco. The $270 rate reflects lodging at the Mammoth Mountain Inn, but there are upgrades available at Tamarack Lodge & Resort and Juniper Springs Resort (get all lodging information here.) The required three-night stay will be about $810.

When: Dec. 19, 2008–April 16, 2009.

Details: Does not include taxes of 13 percent or a $28 reservation fee per booking. Based on double occupancy; no single bookings. Requires a three-night stay. Kids 6 and under ski for free.

Contact: 800/626-6684, mammothmountain.com.

Five Hotels in San Francisco

Looking for something else? As usual, Orbitz does a nice job of rounding up hotel stays by interest—see its Ski Travel Deals (you can add lift tickets and ski rentals to your package). Zonder is a good resource for vacation rentals easily searchable by interest. For skiers, the Woods Manor condo in Breckenridge, Colo., would be a good choice. The condo has a kitchen and sleeps up to six people; rates start at $125 per reservation per night.

Read these guidelines before you book any Real Deal.

Copyright © 2012 Newsweek Budget Travel, Inc.

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