News

 Next step for cancelled courses
(17/03/2020)
 
   

Dear Members,  

 

Firstly, we wanted to thank you all for your patience. It’s taken us a few days to work out how best to respond to this crisis. After analysing the situation and taking the time to consult stakeholders across 7 countries in 2 continents, we’re happy to confirm that if members had their course cancelled, they can transfer their payment to another course or have their money back as a refund.  

 

If you'd like to transfer your payment to another course, we have some courses available to book now and we’ll be adding more over the coming weeks.  We ask that if you choose this approach, you use this transferred payment by the end of May 2021. If you'd prefer to have your money back, just contact the office and we'll sort it out. 

  

Apologies it took us a while to work it out. This situation will have a huge impact upon BASI, we’ve had to cancel over 140 courses, meaning as the situation unfolded rapidly we had to make several tactical decisions to try and keep offering courses but at the same time continue to protect our members health & safety. 

  

We learned through our insurance brokers yesterday that insurance companies, like everyone, are doing everything they can to mitigate their losses and taking a very hard line on what triggers a policy payoutThe only thing which will activate the policy payout is the FCO issuing a strict "do not travel" warning. The FCO updated their website with an Exceptional Travel Advisory Notice today, so many members may find themselves with some of the protection they need, so wcontinue to recommend that members pursue their insurance for travel & accommodation losses.  

  

You will hear and see the word "unprecedented" a lot over the next few months, but it is true. We’ll be in touch again soon. In the meantime, stay safe and keep looking after each other.  


 December 2020 courses
(17/03/2020)
 
   

December 2020 Courses

Since we were forced to cancel a number of courses at the end of the 2020 season due to the Coronavirus crisis, we've scheduled some new courses before the 2020/21 season kicks off which you can now book or transfer on to. We'll keep adding groups as courses fill up. 

 Important Message for BASI Members
(14/03/2020)
 
   

Dear Members, Parents and Guardians, 

 

As you are probably now aware, countries around the world have gone into lockdown state as they struggle to contain and delay the spread of coronavirus. In Europe many countries have closed their borders and national governments are having to take tough decisions, quickly, which will likely impact our ability to travel. In the UK, we are expecting government action over the coming days and weeks which will have a medium-term impact on all of our families and loved ones. 

 

We are not in any way trying to replace FCO or national guidelines which are in place, but if you or a family member are planning on travelling back home from resorts but have not yet done so, BASI strongly suggest that you or they pack what can be packed and do so now. None of us can know how long these lockdowns will last, or indeed whether airports and train links will remain open. BASI have a duty of care to our members to ensure they keep themselves safe.  

 

Many of our members are experienced instructors, permanently located in the Alps and are well placed to help the many who are not and/or who may be worried about how to get home if local & national transport infrastructure closes. If you are willing and able to offer your help, without putting yourselves at risk, to those individuals trying to get back to the UK then it will be hugely appreciated. The “BASI Community Hub” Facebook group is a great place to liaise with one another, as many already do. 

 

Effective from tomorrow, the BASI office will be physically closed and staff forced to work from home, with the phone lines open 0900h-1700h GMT, Monday to Friday. Please bear with us whilst staff do their best to adapt to a completely new way of working – this is something we have never done.  

 

As professional snowsports instructors, we all have a fantastic job. We help others have fun, we stretch and develop them in a beautiful learning environment. The mountain can wait, you and your families’ wellbeing cannot. Many of us, BASI included, run businesses and understandably are thinking through the commercial impact of what has happened. Many members are worried and angry that they’ll be out of pocket. For now, focus on getting home, because we can all revisit those topics at some point in the future once we’ve had the chance to get back up, dust ourselves down and assess the impact of what has occurred. 

 

 

Stay safe, 

 

The BASI Team  


 Coronavirus Update 10th March 2020
(09/03/2020)
 
   

Coronavirus Update 10th March 2020

The FCO released updated guidelines for Italy on 9th March 2020. The FCO now advise against all but essential travel to Italy, due to an ongoing outbreak of coronavirus (Covid-19).

Travellers returning from Italy are being instructed to stay indoors and avoid contact with other people when returning to the UK, even if they do not have symptoms. Due to this update, it would be irresponsible for us to allow members traveling from these areas to join courses with members from outside of these areas for the time being.

Following the FCO guidance, members who have been in Italy in the last 14 days must not attend at BASI course whether symptom free or not. If members have self-isolated for 14 days and are still symptom free, they can then rebook a BASI course, provided that we are running courses and taking bookings at the time. We’ll be following the same guidelines for our trainers.

On courses currently running, we will be asking students to act immediately to avoid contaminating others. If students develop any flu-like symptoms, they should self-isolate immediately and contact local health services (dial 112 for emergency services in Europe).

We also wanted to update you with our plans to protect members. Until we have more information, we won’t be taking any new bookings or balance payments for unconfirmed courses. We will also refund all admin fees paid for cancelled eurotests.

If a course is already confirmed, we’ll still plan to run this course unless the guidance from the FCO recommends otherwise. If we cancel confirmed courses with no guidance from the FCO, we could leave members exposed in terms of insurance claims. Here’s a useful article with some information on your travel rights.


 Statement regarding cancelled BASI courses in Italy
(08/03/2020)
 
   

Statement regarding cancelled BASI courses in Italy

 

Following our decision on 8th March 2020 to cancel our courses that were planned to run in Courmayeur and Pila on Monday 9th March 2020 and Monday 16th March 2020, here are the next steps for students directly impacted by the cancellations.

We are currently trying to set up new courses in locations which are close enough to minimise student travel from Italy but far enough away to reduce likelihood of another virus-related cancellation. We understand that members have invested time and money in preparing for these courses and we want to provide a solution with the least disruption. These courses will run even if the minimum numbers required to make a profit is not met to ensure that those affected by Italian cancellations are not out of pocket.

We’d like to stress that that the situation may get worse rather than better. Whilst there is currently no FCO or local authority guidance stopping us from setting up these replacement courses, it is distinctly possible these replacement courses may also be cancelled, so students need to think carefully before deciding what they wish to do and make sure that they have appropriate insurance in place.

If students impacted do not wish or are unable to travel to a new venue in the coming weeks, they can alternatively choose to be transferred onto a course running in Hintertux at the end of the season.

If neither of the replacement course options are suitable, then students should contact their insurance company in the first instance and contact the office if you have any queries.

Those are the steps for students booked on to BASI run courses; we are now working with our Business Partners to find a solution for the courses they had been organising for their students. We ask for your patience and understanding as we work to find solutions for all those impacted. 


 Statement for BASI Courses Planned for Italy in March
(07/03/2020)
 
   

Statement on BASI Courses Planned for Italy in March - 08/03/2020

 

As we stated in our message dated Thursday 5th March 2020, we have been monitoring the Coronavirus situation in Northern Italy. We also stated that if the situation changed, so too would our response. The situation has now changed.

The Italian authorities have already placed Lombardy under quarantine; however, we have now been made aware that all ski resorts in the Aosta Valley will close their lifts with immediate effect until the end of April. The rationale, as we understand it, is that authorities are concerned by the volume of people travelling north of Lombardy and the impact this may have upon contamination and further spread across Europe.

We will therefore not be sending our Trainers into the Aosta Valley to deliver courses that were planned to start tomorrow Monday 9th March 2020 and Monday 16th March 2020 in Courmayeur and Pila. 

We also have taken the decision to cancel the courses that were planned to run in Tonale on Monday 23rd March due to proximity to the Lombardy region.

Our advice to students impacted by these cancellations is to use their travel insurance to recoup as much of their outlay as possible. However, seeing as the underlying reason for these cancellations is clearly extraordinary, BASI will be as flexible as possible with regards our usual cancellation policy and will endeavour to find new course places for those impacted and to do what we can to minimise the financial impact to students.

This decision does not currently affect any of the other courses which we have planned across the Alps. We will take swift action if the situation changes.


 Coronavirus Update 5th March 2020
(04/03/2020)
 
   

Coronavirus Update


BASI has been monitoring the situation regarding the Coronavirus since the outbreak and as a result, we decided to cancel the courses in China that were planned for February. You are all no doubt aware of the situation has developed since then and the problems Northern Italy is currently facing.
 
BASI wishes to reassure its membership that we are monitoring the situation and the possible impact on our planned courses. We will be basing our decisions on official guidance from the World Health Organisation and the UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office, but we are also taking the local view into account such as this recent statement from the Aosta Valley and this statement from Interski
 
Through March we have courses confirmed in Switzerland, Italy, Austria, France and Andorra and, at present, the Foreign & Commonwealth Office have not issued a warning against traveling to any of the destinations we plan to run our courses from.
 
However, this is a highly dynamic situation and we continue to monitor what is going on. Should the guidance we receive change, so too will our response. If we are required to cancel any of our courses, then we will do our utmost to limit the financial impact on our membership. We take your safety very seriously and will act swiftly if the situation changes.

 BASI 2020 Members Survey results
(25/02/2020)
 
   
The results of the 2020 BASI Members survey are in. We want to say a huge thanks to everyone that participated in the 2019/20 BASI Members survey. The next step is for us to use these results to set up working groups and focus on the topics you’ve asked us to focus on. We're aiming to get these groups up and running in the new financial year which starts on the 1st of June. However, if you expressed an interest in being involved with any of the working groups we may be in touch before then to get the ball rolling. 


 Brexit Update February 2020
(09/02/2020)
 
   

Brexit Update - What have BASI been doing and what’s the latest news?  

 

Since the UK officially left the EU on 31st January 2020, we wanted to give you an update on where BASI qualifications stand in a post-Brexit environment. We know there are still lots of unknowns, but here are a few points to tell you what we do know.  

The first and most important point to make is that we are now in the transition period; however, this also means there have been no actual changes. The rules and agreements that were in place before 2300h GMT on the 31st January 2020 remain in place now and will run until at least 31st December 2020.  

Secondly, the indicators are that BASI qualifications will continue to be recognised in Europe after the transition period is complete. This is reassuring but hopefully not a surprise; BASI spent the past decade building, investing in and strengthening our relationships with our European partners so that today, not only will the qualification framework we’ve created over the years continue to be recognised in Europe, but also so that we will continue to benefit from regular and close contact with other nations’ Associations. 

We continue to have a full-time member of staff on the Board of Interski International, the Snowsports umbrella organisation with its three specialised associations - the ISIA (The International Ski Instructors Association), IVSI (The International Association for Amateur Ski Instructors) and IVSS (The International Association for skiing in Schools and Universities). Having Dave Renouf (International and Educational Development Manager) acting as one of seven members of the Interski Board ensures we are plugged-in to a major international decision-making body and keeps us in the loop in terms of any potential developments.  

The third point is that we’ll continue to be included in the EU Commission Delegated Act for ski instructors and the associated Common Training Test (CTT) Agreement. Mostly recently we’ve attended the calibrations of the openers for the EU CTT technical test during which there were also many discussions relating to the ongoing improvements and successes for the CTT. As part of BASI’s continuing commitment to support the EU Delegated Act, BASI has openers attending CTT technical tests in Europe. Sega Fairweather attended her first test as one of the openers last week; she performed incredibly well and we’re delighted to have a female opener as part of the BASI openers team. Sega is the only female opener in Europe! 

We decided to align our qualifications with the Scottish Credit Qualification Framework (SCQF) several years ago, which in turn aligns with the European Qualification Framework (EQF). Not only does this gives our European counterparts an alternative tool which they can use to recognise the level of our qualifications, but it also enables our members to gain recognition for the time and effort they’ve put in to their Snowsports career if they choose to apply for jobs in completely different sectors. 

The final point is that we’ve been in regular contact with the UK Government departments responsible for promoting and protecting the rights of UK citizens working abroad. Whilst the BEIS (Business, Enterprise, Innovation and Skills) and DDCMS (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport) both advise us that a reciprocity agreement is in place (i.e. if we treat EU Citizens in the UK nicely, they’ll do the same to British Nationals working in the EU), we are however expecting some of our members to experience a bit of turbulence whilst negotiations are conducted and as changes to working rights in Europe take shape.  

We are being advised that BASI instructors who are currently registered to work in other European countries and who pay tax there shouldn’t have any issues continuing to do so. To avoid inconvenience in the short term, BASI recommends that instructors register to work in the countries that they intend to work in, anticipating that new working rights arrangements post Brexit may take some time.   

Whilst we’re all having to endure the ambiguity caused by Brexit, the issue doesn’t seem to have impacted the number of people interested in attending BASI courses; our Membership is still growing, reaching an all-time high of 6,500 in October 2019 and our Alpine level 1 course attendance is up 10% on level 1’s year on year.  We’re also still seeing a steady stream of Jobs on the BASI Jobs Board with an increase in opportunities in China and Japan.  

As this all plays out, if you have any Brexit questions about how it will affect you, please do get in touch. We may not have the answers, but your questions may be of use when dealing with the UK government representatives and the questions BASI can put to them about how processes are envisioned post BREXIT. Please also try to keep the rumour mill under control; whilst social media can act as a tremendous support network it can also send myths and untruths around our community faster than Sega Fairweather herself!


 Pre Notice February 2020
(02/02/2020)
 
   

Invitation to stand for Election 

BASI is seeking nominations from members with the commitment and enthusiasm to serve on the BASI Board. We seek individuals who can demonstrate the specific skills that relate to the positions available and may have prior experience working with a member association or club environment.  Evidence of experience and skills must be included in your application and CV. 
 
The deadline for candidates is Friday 21 February 2020 and all information regarding eligibility and job descriptions are available here

A General Meeting of The British Association of Snowsport Instructors Limited will be held on Sunday 19 April 2020 in Hintertux, Austria for the purpose of electing the following positions: 

Ordinary resolution 1 - Telemark Director 
Ordinary resolution 2 - Marketing Director 
Ordinary resolution 3 – Ombudsman (not a Board position) 

Nominations must be from the Member wishing to stand and include the following: 

  • A statement of your willingness to serve BASI in the role of Director 
  • A CV which demonstrates the skills and experience you have for the position - CV’s will be published in the voting documents and on the BASI website (Members area).  
  • A personal statement of no more than 150 words to be published in the voting documents and on the BASI web site. 
  • Proposer and Seconder:  
    A personal email or letter marked ‘Nominations’ FAO of Mr Robert James Lister, BASI Chairman - sent to Karen Race, BASI,  Morlich House, 17 The Square, Grantown on Spey, Morayshire, PH26 3HG (Krace@basi.org.uk ) must be received from each proposer and seconder. Proposers and Seconders must be current Full or Life Members who are eligible to vote in respect of the position that they are proposing or seconding.  Proposer and Seconder nominations must be received no later than 5pm on Friday 21 February 2020. 
  •  A suitable recent head shot photograph (no hats or goggles, - jpeg format) of yourself sent by email to Krace@basi.org.uk  
  • Telemark Director can be voted for by all current Full and Life Telemark members. Marketing Director and Ombudsman can be elected by all full and Life members. 

 
We look forward to receiving your nominations.