Rental Central

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Your one-stop location for the most comprehensive data available on rental equipment and rental practices.


Below are rental articles from our SAM archives...

January 2014
Rental Gear 2014
Manufacturers on both the Alpine and snowboard sides continue to find ways to make the rental process easier and guests happier.

July 2013
What Renters Want
From self-service boot selection to reformatted shops, see how these resorts have successfully upped their rental game.

January 2012
Rocking the Rental World
Areas are actually making rental shops a positive part of the guest experience.

January 2011
Creating Space
As rental operations expand, clever storage solutions can maximize your available space.

January 2009
Rentals on the Rise
The economic slowdown could fuel an uptick in rentals.

September 2008
High-Tech Renting
Software programs can speed the rental process and boost the bottom line for a wide range of operations.

January 2008
The Ultimate Treehouse
Aspen/Snowmass started from scratch and created the ideal children's center.

March 2007
The Rental Shop of the Future
A picture tour of some of the best rental shops in the world.

September 2006
Time To Train
Effectively training rental shop staff is key to a safe and successful business.

March 2006
So Many Questions, So Few Answers
A Rental Roundtable at the SIA Show kicked off a much-needed discussion on rental practices.

November 2005
Champagne Taste
A slow but monumental change is shifting the balance away from basic fleet rentals toward demo and high performance gear.

May 2005
Controlling Quality
Here's a checklist to help serve up the best rental experience.

November 2004
Tuning Out
Rental gear is only as good as its tune, as these managers learned.

September 2004
Measuring the Growth Model
With the industry's new mandate to convert new skiers and snowboarders, here's a look at some successful programs.

November 2002
Between a Helmet and a Hard Place
With the popularity of helmets on the rise, more ski areas are looking into including the lids in the rental program. Is it worth it?

Rental Shop
In-Season Quality Control. Sample your rental stock to make sure it remains up to snuff.

September 2002
Tune Up Your Rental Gear
Pre-season maintenance helps ensure that your rental fleet is ready to roll when the snow flies.

November 2001
From the Streets to the Slopes
A look at the next generation of snow toys including snowdecks, bicycles on skis or boards, and steerable tubes.

May 2001
Making a Good First Impression
Smart layout in the rental shop can help customer flow, alleviate anxiety and generate happy guests.

Strength in Numbers
How Midwest ski areas formed a buying group to get better rental equipment. The buying muscle presented by a group helped bring about some changes to make new shaped gear stand up to abuse while processing orders earlier.

March 2001
Piling on the Extras
This piece is about a Learn To Ski/Ride program at Pats Peak, N.H., where extra income is generated by lesson programs run for local schools. It brings together meals, rentals, lessons, retail purchases intoan a la carte menu for parents who save money and generate income for the ski area.

January 2001
Seth Says: The Marketing Wisdom of Marshall Tito
Seth takes a look at how the disconnect between ski school, rentals and ticketing works to frustrate visitors and lead to losses of regular customers.

Thoughts on our 40th Year
A brief salute to our readers and our advertisers for their support over a period of 40 years.

Rental Equipment in the Spotlight/SAMMY Time
The memo highlights the "Rental Equipment Handbook 2002" supplement in the issue and tells readers about the Renmtal Alley showcase scheduled for Las Vegas; the second part discusses the upcoming SAMMY awards to be presented at the NSAA May convention and points out the nomination form bound into the issue.

November 2000
Stay Tuned
The article highlights the practices and the importance of keeping rental fleets tuned for customers. Contains a sidebar on backshop tips.

July 2000
Keeping Track of Inventory
This is a roundup of the software packages available to automate and simplify keeping track of all the info on rental and retail inventory. These systems keep track of maintenance, calculate returns and warn shop personnel when its time to tune a pair of skis.

May 2000
Intrawest: A Rental Profile
Intrawest is revising its rental shops for better margins and service through the use of "Pods" where customers sit and shop personnel bring gear for fitting. The rental shops also include a retail segment for better profit margins. The piece also includes a sidebar on the building of a temporary base villageÑthe Phoenix ProjectÑat Mountain Creek, N.J. after its base lodge burned to the ground in October of 1999.

January 2000
Rental Mania in the Millennium; I Want My SAMMY
Two pieces: The first introducing our Rental Equipment Roundup and our role at SIA (showcases); the second soliciting SAMMY Award nominations.

May 1999
Binding Indemnification Programs
This article outlines how a rental shop should go about joining a manufacturer's indemnification program to hedge against the possibility of future lawsuits. It explains compliance with programs is easy and outlines the steps necessary for a shop to join a program that handles claims in case of trouble.

November 1998
Battling Inadequate Rentals
Though ski area managers have been working to upgrade rental condominiums over the last few years, eradicating the worst might take a few more. The attempt has been to maintain and improve the the integrity of resort rental programs, and thereby improve the integrity of the resorts themselves. This report is an update of the situation around the country.

September 1998
One Stop: Step In, Step Out
Ski Liberty, Pa.'s, snowboard rental shop has one of the largest inventories in the east and redesigned their new shop to make sure it was a model of efficiency. Their decision to use more step-in bindings also meant they could increase inventory in the same space.

March 1998
Rental Ski Roundup 1998-99
The market is heating up, with increased resort investment and a boom in demo programs tempting new suppliers into the rental arena. HereÕs a rundown of next seasonÕs offerings from the major manufacturers.

Demos Driving Rentals
SAM interviews Bill Irwin of Elan Ski and Snowboards to evaluate the changing nature of the rental market.

January 1998
1998 Snowboard Rental Roundup
Manufacturers are meeting a growing demand for rental snowboards with rental-specific product. Here's a roundup of offerings for the 1998-99 season

November 1996
Renting Super Sidecuts
Now that consumers seem to have enthusiastically accepted the concept of super sidecuts, rental managers need to train staff in this area, specifically regarding length selection, tuning, returns and retail.

May 1996
More Rental Super-Sidecuts Available
Though availability is no longer a problem as most ski factories now build shaped skis for rental use, the bad news is that few are set up to build them at rental prices.