Christmas Wish List: ‘All You Can Fly’ to Colorado Ski Resorts

If you’re a skier living in Denver or the Front Range, just below “fresh powder” on your Christmas list is probably some version of a plea for “no traffic on I-70.” Often dramatized yet always present, local annoyance about congestion on the mountain highway has revived talks about train routes, including the one from Union Station to Winter Park, as an affordable alternative going forward. And then there are other ideas, maybe not as affordable but equally enticing. For example, the “All You Can Fly” flight service from FreshAir, which launched last week. 

The sales pitch here is that you can 1) avoid I-70 traffic 2) avoid the chaos of DIA 3) save on commercial flight costs and 4) cut down on travel times significantly. FreshAir is a membership-based flight service that gives you unlimited roundtrip flights on private planes from Denver to Aspen, Eagle-Vail, and Telluride. Flights depart from the Centennial Airport, located just south of Denver, and the schedule has flights on Thursday, Friday, Sunday, and Monday.

At first, the fact that individual monthly memberships start at $1,000 per month makes it seem like a reasonable investment/treat – one fit for a “everyone in the family go in on this” Christmas present. If you were to take three weekend trips to Telluride, for example, then you’d certainly save money and a lot of time by flying with FreshAir over a commercial airline or driving, respectively. But, the devil is in the details: There’s an $1,500 one-time “initiation fee” when you sign up, plus another $75 for an FET tax. So, you’re looking at $2,575 now for your first month, which means you’d have to sign on for several months and travel very often to make reason #3 come true. Which is, unfortunately for me, the #1 issue.

Bummer. I can certainly see the appeal, if I could only swing the finances. But I’ll add it to my Christmas list anyway and see what happens. Maybe Uncle Rich is feeling generous this year.

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