EA Ski and Snowboard

EA Ski & Snowboard

COVID-19 Program Updates

Due to global health & safety concerns and travel restrictions related to the coronavirus, EA Ski & Snowboard has decided to offer flexible booking options for some of their upcoming programs. Learn more about COVID-19 updates to stay tuned regarding program information.


Fast track your career as a ski or snowboard instructor and enjoy the best winter of your life with EA Ski & Snowboard. Whether your a seasoned professional or have only stepped on the slopes a few times, EA offers instructor training programs to suit all abilities.

On a training program with EA Ski & Snowboard you'll receive world-class training, gain an internationally recognised instructors qualification and get a guaranteed paid instructor job offer at your chosen resort.

EA courses are perfect for anyone wanting to fast track their career as an instructor or wanting to experience a winter gap year. Choose from more than 30 resorts across Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Switzerland and the USA.


We don't want worries about travel restrictions to stop you from becoming an instructor before you've even started. For peace of mind, if you book a course now, starting in 2020, and are unable to attend due to a government-sanctioned travel ban, we will allow you to swap onto a course in 2021 for free.

183 Glenda Drive
Queenstown 9300
New Zealand


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No, I don't recommend this program

I found this program back in 2018 and the interview process was very simple. The rep I worked with was extremely responsive and helpful. Because of my job and time for a sabbatical, I signed up for the Mt. Ruapehu New Zealand 2020 season.The real problem started as COVID hit in March. The communication dropped off and I was left in the dark on the status of my program that was scheduled to start in June. I understand the delays and uncertainty surrounding the pandemic. However, I was constantly requesting information because my rep seemed disengaged with the situation. I was sent a purposefully confusing email at the end of May, also telling me my rep had left the company. After a week of emails, I finally heard my program was cancelled and I would receive no refund. I was told I could transfer $4,000 to another program and would lose the other $2,000. As I mentioned previously, because of my job I am unable to transfer to another program during a different season. The company also had altered their terms and conditions document from when I signed back in July 2019. Now, EA has a different policy for COVID and delaying programs where you don't lose $2,000 for preparation costs. The company's run around responses and diminished communication leaves me feeling hopeless about ever seeing my money again. I wanted to share my experience because I know it is similar to many others in my program as we are all demanding refunds. I feel it is important for future applicants to understand EA's actions and lack of understanding during COVID.

If you did this all over again, what's one thing you would change?
I would ensure the company wasn't able to change their terms and conditions like EA did.
Response from EA Ski & Snowboard

Thank you for sharing your thoughts Allison.

We were pleased to hear your initial experience with our team was positive. It is unfortunate your travel plans were affected by COVID-19 and that you were unable do the program at Mt Ruapehu. It has been a challenging time. The travel industry in particular has been hard hit and we appreciate it has been extremely frustrating for you. In the early stages of this crisis we were hopeful of being able to run our program at Mt Ruapehu and our operations team was in touch with everyone affected as a group. We apologise and understand that our communication was not as good as it could have been. Our team has been on reduced hours due to lockdown restrictions and at times we simply did not have the answers to know what we could and couldn’t do. Alex who you were dealing with decided to take another job opportunity but the remainder of our team is still with us and we are doing our best to retain all our staff. Ultimately we want to do the best for our clients and be here on the other side of this also.

As you note we have updated our standard terms and conditions. This has been to allow more flexibility for those now booking Northern Hemisphere programs due to government-sanctioned travel bans.

We have a number of people in a similar position to you and are doing our best to offer alternative program options. EA has been operating since 2005 and we want to ensure we are here for many years to come. We start planning our programs months in advance and operations, along with overheads and commitments to suppliers, have meant we have not been able to offer a cash refund. We have gone above and beyond the requirements of our terms and conditions to offer as much as possible in way of credits towards a future program along with additional credit as a gesture of goodwill to ensure losses to clients are minimised. We appreciate that for some, being able to do a program at a future date is not an option and we encourage you and anyone else affected to continue communicating and working with us.

Thanks again for your thoughts and feedback.

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Yes, I recommend this program

I had an incredible season. So many friends, so many memories!
I learnt so much about skiing, about teaching, and about communicating with a variety of nationalities and social backgrounds.
EA made the whole training process so easy. Their job was to train us and get us prepared for the exam, which is exactly what happened.
My season was Club Med Tomamu’s grand opening season so it was definitely not problem free. But that was due to Club Med understaffing the resort. It was a busy and sometimes overwhelming season but it was also the most incredible experience of my life. We had great accommodation, great food, in a beautiful and safe country.
In my opinion nothing can be a 10 but this was very close. It was a great experience and i am very thankful. 9/10 😁

What would you improve about this program?
The visa situation was the only drama. Our EA rep could not get to club med Tomamu because of this.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Meeting new people that have the same interests as you and are going through the same challenges is actually quite eye opening. Through EA you not only get fun training and guidance but you also end up attending pretty cool social evenings. It's nice to be close to everyone for the first three weeks, whilst settling in to your new environment. I'm not going to lie, the exam is hard and tiresome at times but makes you feel all the more proud when you pass. Getting paid to ski is one of the best jobs out there! If you're a fan of ski and/or snowboarding you should at least try one season... it's a win win situation.

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Yes, I recommend this program

Well to start off, the trip to San Francisco was a lot of fun. I really enjoyed getting to know the other EA members before we arrived at the resort. Once arriving in Lake Tahoe, everyone settled into their condos, it was nice to be close to everyone for the first two weeks, it allowed us to socialize and build great friendships. Our two week training was very informative and educational. We trained for two weeks on snow before we took our exam. I felt very prepared to sit the exam. We also got to know our trainers very well throughout training. Getting paid to snowboard is so amazing...I do not want to go back to my other job! Everyone who has a passion for the sport should at least try this out for a season!

Yes, I recommend this program

My experience was definitely one for the books. Though I’ve skied off and on throughout my life, I wasn’t as prepared for the workout I got from having a fun, hands-on learning program as I did at the EA program in Northstar CA. It’s definitely a great way to get into a great passion that will open the doors for a worldwide career. If you’re young, love snow sports, want to share your passion with others, and live to travel, I recommend doing this program.


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Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Mark Crichton

Job Title
Digital Marketing Coordinator
Mark grew up skiing on dry slopes and in the glorious Scottish hills before undertaking an EA Ski & Snowboard internship in Lake Louise, Canada. After traveling between Canada and New Zealand working as a ski instructor, Mark now lives in Queenstown and is the Digital Marketing Coordinator for EA Ski & Snowboard.

Mark likes to think of himself as a bad environmentalist and an even worse surfer.

What is your favorite travel memory?

Well, that's a difficult question, I can probably narrow it down to 3 favourite memories:

#1 Living in Lake Louise on my EA internship in what is endearingly named 'Stables'.

Coming home after a day at work on the mountain then heading straight onto our back garden park setup with some beers was easily one of my highlights.

Road tripping through resorts such as Revelstoke, Kickinghorse and Fernie another amazing highlight.

And more recently traveling and exploring New Zealand in a campervan before and after the ski season!

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

Each day, I become somehow more passionate for travelling and skiing and having worked 3 seasons instructing I thought I was already pretty into it. It probably has something to do with scrolling through pictures of our interns epic seasons. Writing about these incredible destinations and courses day in day out does give me a little bit of the FOMO feeling.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

I met my friend Matt Gillespie on our season in Lake Louise with EA, and his story still inspires me to chase your dreams to this day.

Over several nights in the pub, and most of the season, Matt would talk about his dream of owning a lodge in a ski resort. After heading back to Australia to do a season in Perisher, the next thing I hear is that he's bought a lodge in Japan (The Ranch) and started a company called Hakuba Snow Tours! Four years on it's still going strong and I'm heading over there to get my first taste of Japow, this winter!

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

I have been eyeing up our Queenstown level 3 internship for a while as that has just about everything I'd be looking for in a season. I'd also love to head back to Canada and do the full season snowboard training in Revelstoke; I'm a decent intermediate snowboarder but I'd love the opportunity to take my snowboarding up a level. The 11-week training program is probably the quickest and easiest way to make that happen.

I managed to get a few days at Revy while doing my internship in Lake Louise; ever since then, I've wanted to go back. The vibe in the town, the riding potential on the resort, and the amount of rad backcountry terrain nearby make it very high on my bucket list!

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

We are the original Ski & Snowboard instructor course provider and, having started it all, it's very unique to see that the company hasn't lost sight of why we are here.

Having been on an EA internship gives me great pride hearing about all the new interns we have coming in each season. Because I know they are going to have a rad, life changing experience.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

Having a great team, with a shared goal and strong core values. At EA Ski & Snowboard, every member of our team is passionate about the ski and snowboard industry and about helping others get into the industry. During the NZ season, we regularly go out riding together which creates an epic bond between the team. Plus, having meetings on the mountain makes those monthly catch-ups a little more bearable!