Nonstop present the opportunity to spend the winter season in Banff working as a ski instructor.
We've teamed up with Norquay's established ski school internship program that will train you to achieve your level 1 instructor certification before you join their team as a fully fledged ski instructor teaching skiing in the Canadian Rockies.
There are just sixteen places available on Norquay’s Internship Program which consists of two distinct components:
After a warm welcome from our Resort Host and an orientation of Banff, and having settled into your accommodation and met your house-mates, the coaching begins. The first three weeks in Banff will be spent preparing for your level 1 instructor assessment.
You will receive coaching from Norquay’s most experienced instructor trainers who will develop your personal ski technique as well as introduce you to ski instructing skills. You’ll spend time shadowing real-life ski lessons and have specific training on how best to teach children (kids lessons make up much of a ski school’s business).
At the end of the three weeks you’ll take the CSIA’s 3-day Level 1 course which is designed to continue your progression as well as determine if you’re ready to be an instructor! Nerves are natural but you'll be well prepared and we anticipate a 100% pass rate.
After gaining your level 1 ski instructor certification you’re ready to get involved in the Norquay Ski School and start teaching your own lessons. This is one of the best jobs you can have – spending your days on the slopes, passing on your passion for skiing, and working alongside an amazing crew of fellow instructors. You can expect to work from mid-December through to late April.
Banff is a super fun, lively ski town served by three ski resorts (Lake Louise, Sunshine, Norquay) that combined make up the largest ski area in North America. As Banff is further north than a lot of other Canadian resorts, it's cold enough to provide good early-season conditions for this course. It's also a great option for younger people taking ski instructor courses as the drinking age is 18 in Alberta whereas it’s 19 in BC (where most Canadian resorts are located).
The internship is run by the Winter Sports School at Norquay which is the ideal resort for an internship program because they are the busiest ski school business in the area meaning more reliable work for our interns.
Experience life as a Banff local sharing a centrally-located home with other people on the internship program or others working at the local resorts. We’ll connect you with our Banff accommodation partner through whom you'll be able to secure accommodation for the entire season (early November to late April). For prices, check out the "What's Included" section below.
Houses have shared twin bedrooms, equipped kitchens, comfortable sitting rooms and the rent includes utility and wi-fi bills. Your local landlord will be on hand to provide help and support.
There are just 16 places available on this internship. Here's how to secure your place:
Download the Course Brochure (below) and read through the details of the internship.
Contact us! Send us a copy of your CV/Resume and a cover letter explaining why you want to position. We can also arrange a phone call to discuss your suitability for the internship.
If you haven't already done so, apply for your Canadian work visa. We can advise you on how to get started. Let us know once you are in the pool
Next, we will arrange a preliminary interview with Nonstop; if we think you’re the right fit you are given green light to provisionally secure your place for £150/$300 deposit.
Secure your mountain home! We'll connect you with our accommodation partner in Banff and you'll be able to easily secure a place for the winter (normally a stressful & difficult task).
Once visa approved, we put you forward for a skype interview with the Snow School. We will help you prep for the interview. It's a great opportunity for you and you future boss (!) to get to know each other.
If visa not been granted by July, we will refund £100 of initial deposit // or if Ski school director disagrees with our approval we refund full deposit.
Book your flights, insurance and start getting excited for November!
The first part of the internship experience is a three-week course containing 12 days of ski coaching focused on both improving your personal technique and preparing you for the 3-day CSIA Level 1 instructor assessment, which is held at the end of the course. The 12 day program includes experience shadowing ski school lessons as well as training specific to working with children.
Upon successful completion of the initial three-week training course you will enter the employment of the Winter Sports School at Norquay when the formal internship begins. You will earn approximately $15/hour and can expect to typically work 20 hours per week over three to five days. As with any ski instructor role this is dependent on the snow and business conditions. The work day starts at 8:45am.
Established in 2002, Nonstop are a registered Canadian business with our head office in Fernie, BC (four hours south of Banff). We have been operating in Banff since 2005 delivering numerous ski courses each winter. We have a great support team including experienced Resort Hosts who will be on hand to ensure you are set up for an awesome winter in Banff. Through the initial three week training course they will be an active part of your experience helping you settle into Banff, arranging the course logistics and hosting regular socials. Once you start work you will be an employee of the Norquay ski school but our hosts are on-hand when you need their support.
You’ll be provided with a Staff season pass for Norquay resort, one of Banff’s three ski resorts. This enables you to free ski on your days off as well as attend the popular night-skiing events at Norquay. An optional staff upgrade to a season pass for all three Banff ski resorts is available to staff.
An airport transfer from Calgary airport direct to your home for the season will be organised by your landlord and is included in the accommodation package. Please note you'll need to arrange your own way back to the airport at the end of the season (circa $65). This is because many people head off on a road trip with mates rather than return home directly from Banff.
Throughout the winter (while on the initial course and then as an active employee) you’ll have access to the staff shuttle bus that runs between Banff and Norquay (10 minute drive). No need to own a car.
A 3-day course run by the Canadian Ski Instructor Alliance. Upon successful completion you’ll be certified to teach beginner to novice ski lessons. You will also have a job offer from Norquay Ski School!
By taking the CSIA course you’ll be a member of the Canadian Ski Instructors' Alliance and eligible to great benefits such as Pro Deals on ski equipment as well as covered by their liability insurance.
On arrival in Banff we host an equipment advice session to ensure you’re clear on what equipment will best suit your winter and your job as a ski instructor. Additionally, as a member of the Norquay ski school you’ll have access to some great discounts (30%) on brands such as Dynastar and Lange.
As soon as you arrive in Banff you will be given a warm welcome into the Norquay team and be treated like any other member of the wintersports school. Throughout the initial training course - before you’re actually a qualified ski instructor - you’ll be invited to ski school parties (expect over 100 people all pumped for a great winter!) and treated like a member of staff. Employee benefits commence upon completion of Norquay's 3-week training course and you officially starting work.
Turning up in a new town and a new country is both exciting and sometimes overwhelming. Our Resort Hosts will be ready to give you a warm welcome and ensure you’re quickly familiar with the town and resort set up. They’ll also communicate the course schedule and daily events with you via our course Facebook group.
During the 3-week training course we’ll host a weekly group dinner in a local Banff restaurant to get everyone on the internship program together over a delicious meal and a few drinks.
Our Resort Hosts will arrange a weekly social during the initial 3-week training course.
Moving to Canada for the winter will result in a few administration chores including setting up a local Bank account (so you can get paid!), obtaining a SIN number (Social Insurance) so that you can be employed, and registering for Alberta healthcare. As part of your housing package your landlord will provide support and advice on setting these important things up.
The Norquay ski school contains many level 3 and 4 instructors from whom you’ll receive daily coaching throughout the season to progress your certifications and develop your ski career.
As an employee of Norquay ski school you’ll have access to fantastic staff discounts on meals at the resort’s lodge. For approximately $60 (17/18 rate) you can purchase a “Meal Card” which provides eight lunches.
Once you have booked your place on this internship you’ll be supported by our team in both Canada and the UK who have years’ worth of experience both doing seasons, instructing, and organising Nonstop programs. We put together an online “Info Pack” which has kit lists, visa advice, travel arrangement details plus answers to every question we get asked.
Our partner STA Travel can usually arrange deals on your flights to Canada and our insurance partner ERV offers Nonstop participants 15% off their wintersports policies.
Here are two popular additions:
Securing accommodation for the winter season in Banff is extremely challenging. Other internship programs only include accommodation for the initial training course which we find misleading as clearly you need a home for the full season! We’ve secured you access to a home from early November to late April with a local landlord - you'll book this directly with them once you've been accepted on the internship. The total cost is $5,800 plus a $300 damage deposit.
The houses are located within walking distance of Banff's bars, restaurants and shops. They are fully furnished, have communal kitchens and sitting rooms and include the cost of utilities. Bed linen is provided as is Wi-Fi.
These things are not included in the package:
Anyone who is comfortable skiing black runs, is eligible for a working holiday visa for Canada (18-30yrs) and is keen to work hard and play hard.
The internship offers a guaranteed job offer as an instructor at Norquay’s Ski School. During the 3-week training course and your subsequent member of the ski school you will need to demonstrate that you’re a suitable employee – someone who understands the importance of time-keeping, personal presentation, a positive attitude, and a willingness to go above and beyond to help your colleagues and clients. In short, it’s all there for the taking but you have to be the right fit for the ski school.
There are some extortionately expensive internships available and we don’t believe they justify their price tag. Most internships will include 4 weeks of accommodation at the start of the course. Ours doesn not include any accommodation but we will put you in touch with a great company who can help you to arrange your stay.
You’ll earn $15/hour and on average work 20 hours per week over between 3 – 5 days/week. On this basis your monthly income will be approximatly $1,200 and can be supplemented by tips (although this will depend on the type of clients you teach).
With your accommodation paid for in advance your only expenses will be daily meals and beer money. You could budget for as low as $250/week but depending on how much you party you could spend a lot lot more. As a member of staff your lift pass and daily transport are free and your lunches will cost as low as $8/day (with a staff discount). Groceries in the local super market are reasonably priced compared to most ski resorts and there are always drinks specials on Banff’s bars.
The Canadian government issue work visas through: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/work-canada/iec.html You can also find out more information here: https://www.nonstopsnow.com/top-five-tips-on-applying-for-a-canadian-visa
If you have dreams of a long-term career in the ski industry, working around the globe as a ski instructor, then our 11-week ski instructor courses will set an up with a better foundation than an internship can. The reason is that on an instructor course you’ll be able to become a far better skier (1) and you’ll gain multitude of ski instructor qualifications and mountain knowledge (2).
1. On an internship you will spend most of your week on the nursery slopes teaching children whereas on an instructor course your coaches will be pushing your personal ski progression on the mountain’s upper slopes in powder, on the piste, in the park, through tress etc. You’ll become a seriously advanced skier. We have witnessed how our clients who work an internship don’t progress to the same level as they simply don’t have the free time to ski hard or receive the professional coaching that a Nonstop instructor course involves.
2. On our 11-week instructor course you can gain 6 qualifications: CSIA Level 1 and Level 2, CSCF Race Coach, CSIA Freestyle Coach, First Aid, Avalanche Safety Training, and its possible to “dual certify” as a snowboard instructor. The Level 2 will open up international opportunities and could see you working in Japan, Australia, New Zealand, South America, Italy, Austria, Switzerland and more.
3. Lastly, if you can make it happen, taking one of our 11-week ski instructor courses is without doubt the ultimate way to do a ski season. Imagine spending every day riding the best terrain and snow with a crew of great mates and a super experienced ski coach helping you continually improve. There’s nothing as satisfying as progressing and becoming truly excellent at something. These courses allow that. Added to this, the experiences available outside of the coaching make your winter even more incredible… road trips to check out other ski resorts/ski towns in Canada and the US, heli-skiing, cat-skiing, snowmobiling, photography courses, winter survival camping, ice skating on frozen lakes, backcountry ski touring, cross country skiing, ice hockey, and more. And that’s all before the great vibe and epic parties that are the hallmark of Nonstop courses.
These courses can be taken in Fernie, Banff or Red Mountain.
We look forward to speaking with you.