Our Story

Sharing our passion for skiing

We’ve been tailor-making ski holidays since 1996, when our founders Richard and Samantha Rice first started Ski Safari. Back then, only a few UK companies were organising ski trips to North America but Richard and Sam were convinced that other Brits would love skiing in Canada as much as they did.

Offering more freedom than other ski operators, Richard and Sam gave skiers the option to see more of the country they were visiting, and to ski at multiple resorts. This led to our pioneering ‘ski safari’ concept, which is now a defining feature of our brand.

Here’s our story...

1996 - The start of our ski journey

Richard and Sam set up Ski Safari from their London flat. ‘Safari’ means ‘journey,’ so Ski Safari was the perfect name for their innovative new company, which offered more than standard ski trips.

1999 - Experiencing every resort

After acquiring Ski US (a travel agency specialising in America) Richard and Sam started offering more resorts across Canada and the US. Determined to only feature resorts they’d skied at themselves, first-hand experience became the backbone of Ski Safari - and Richard and Sam did a lot of skiing!

2002 - Moving to the beach

Ski Safari moved out of London to a small office in Hove, where our company began to expand. To the delight of the growing team, staff ski trips became a regular feature of the company, and still are today.

2006 - Exploring Switzerland

Drawing on our growing team’s resort knowledge, we added a number of Swiss resorts suitable for shorter holidays to our offering. We also continued to expand our ski safari options with road-trips across the western states of the US and rail journeys on Switzerland’s Glacier Express.

2008 - Discovering Japan’s powder

Wowed by the powder on a staff trip to Japan, we added Asia to our expanding range of destinations. City add-ons in Tokyo and Kyoto, and ski safaris in Hokkaido and Honshu also became part of our new offering.

2011 - Year-round active holidays

We started offering European cycling trips through our acquisition of Freedom Treks, creating a year-round programme of active holidays. Also run by our team in Hove, Freedom Treks benefits from the same exceptionally high levels of personal service.

2012 - Scandinavia and the Arctic

Based on a wealth of staff experience in Norway and Sweden, we started offering some of the world’s best family skiing as well adventurous Arctic ski safaris in Scandinavia.

2014 - South Korea and the UK’s Highest Rated Ski Operator

Having sent staff to scope out South Korea’s 2018 Olympic slopes, we loved the quirky ski culture so much that we became the only UK company to offer ski holidays in South Korea. Later in the year, we were the highest rated ski tour operator in the Ski Club of Great Britain’s UK ski industry consumer survey.

2015 - Highest Rated UK Ski Operator, again!

For the second year running, we were the highest rated ski tour operator in the Ski Club of Great Britain’s UK ski industry consumer survey.

2016 - Celebrating 20 years and a third year as the UK's Highest Rated Ski Operator

A year of double celebrations; May marked 20 years of offering incredible tailor-made ski holidays, and then in September we received the highest rating of any UK ski tour operator in the Ski Club of Great Britain's ski industry consumer survey for the third year running.

2017 - Four years in a row

For the fourth time, we came top in the Ski Club of Great Britain's ski industry consumer survey (now called the Industry Awards), with a best ever NPS score of 87.

2018 - Five consecutive years

For the fifth consecutive year we are named the UK's Best Ski Tour Operator in the Ski Club of Great Britain's Industry Awards.

2019 - A larger team, the same exceptional service

We now have 30 skiers and snowboarders in our team but as we grow we continue to offer the same exceptional service, as shown by a sixth consecutive win of the award for the UK's Best Ski Tour Operator and our first British Travel Award for Best Ski & Winter Sports Holiday Company (small category).

Today - True to our roots

Richard and Sam still own 100% of Ski Safari and Freedom Treks, which are run by the same team from our coach-house offices, close to the beach in Hove. Our concept is the same as it was back in 1996 - we offer quality ski holidays that are tailor-made using first-hand knowledge and delivered with outstanding service.