You do not have to break the bank while visiting Aspen. Have a champagne Aspen holiday on a beer budget with the help of these local money - saving secrets. Here are nine ways to keep pennies in your pig bank, minimize the damage, and make the most of your snowy getaway.
  1. Caffeinate without a Conscience: Every morning, without fail, a few Aspen Skiing Company employees wheel out a cart of free coffee at the base of Aspen Mountain. Steps from the gondola , these generous Ski Co. folks will pour you a freshly brewed, free cup o’ joe. (The trick is carrying your skis and poles to the gondola without spilling, there’s an art to it that takes Aspenites a few seasons to master.)
  2. Cheap Lunch: Big W rap sits across the street from Ajax, and has healthy lunches for prices that are hard to come by in Aspen. Wraps, salads, tacos, and smoothies will re energize you for an afternoon shred sesh.
  3. Pub Grub: Nothing beats a hot dinner and a beer after a day on the slopes. Zane’s specializes in sports and beer, Philly cheesesteaks and tatter tots. (Our personal go - to is the 25 - cent wing special at Zane’s between four and six.)
  4. Take it To Go: Grab a growler from the Aspen Brewery and take it home. The brewery boys handcraft the best beer in town and if you don’t feel like hanging out in the clubhouse - esque Tap Room, stick your thumb through the hole of a growler and take it to go. The beer is good and the growler is a great souvenir.
  5. Shuck and Shoot: If you have a taste for the finer things in life, but don’t have a pocket deep enough to indulge on a regular basis, check out the $.50 oysters at Clark’s . There’s not a better après - ski snack than a half dozen Kumamoto oysters for under $ 30.
  6. Hand - me - downs: With all of the fashionistas that reside in our mountain hamlet, I cannot think of a better place to have a second - hand store than Aspen. The new thrift store on East Hopkins (right next to the Isis Theater) has racks filled with gently used styles and brand names. From 80s ski outfits to never-worn cocktail dresses, there are hundreds of hidden treasures to be found.
  7. “I Just Want To Dance”: Check the schedule at Aspen’s infamous music venue, Belly Up, for marquee names, unforgettable cover bands, free local acts, and free movies. There is always something going on at the Belly Up, and you won’t forget the experience if you get to see one of your favorite bands in this small venue.
  8. Get Cultured: Spend a delightful day off of the slopes at the Aspen Art Museum, and don’t spend a dime! Thanks to John and Amy Phelan — Aspen’s generous, art - loving philanthropists — the AAM is free for all guests. With some of the most innovative contemporary art in the world, art supplies that enable young artists to create their own lift ticket, and the Questrom Lecture Series events that allow the public an opportunity to engage with exhibiting artists from around the world and to preview AAM exhibitions, there is something for the entire family at the Aspen Art Museum.
  9. “The Power of Four”: With four world - class mountains to choose from, you’ll find some of the most diverse terrain in North America within a ten - minute drive of downtown Aspen. The kicker: one lift ticket gets you access to all four resorts — Ajax, Aspen Highlands, Snowmass, and Buttermilk — and free buses run like clockwork between each spot. For a full day hit Ajax early, hike Highland Bowl as soon as it is open (usually around 10 AM), spin in Buttermilk’s Superpipe after lunch, and finish the day at Snowmass
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