If you’re flying from out of state or internationally, you’ll be landing in Denver International Airport. It’s a major US hub (especially for United Airlines) with many domestic and international flight options. Winter weather typically affects Denver’s airport once or twice a year, so plan ahead and keep an eye on the weather forecast! From there, it’s roughly two hours by shuttle bus or hire car.
The drive from Denver International Airport is dependent on traffic and weather conditions. We suggest avoiding the trek in the afternoon, when the evening rush out of the city to the western suburbs can slow you down. On weekends and holidays, the sheer number of premier ski resorts along the I-70 corridor can also lock up the traffic, even in good weather.
There are heaps of services which run from the airport to Breck so you are spoilt for choice: Colorado Mountain Express, Summit Express, and Fresh Tracks Transportation to name a few. We went with Peak 1 Express because it has competitive prices, WiFi on board and are flexible to special requests. Prices range from roughly $40-70 per person each way depending on the service. If you do book with them, do it online for better pricing. Services depart the airport frequently from the early morning hours until midnight. They can drop you off in the center of Breckenridge, or right at the door of wherever you’re staying (though this service costs a bit more). For your return trip, they’ll suggest a pick-up time in Breckenridge based on your scheduled departure from Denver.
If you want flexibility to visit a few of the other nearby resorts, then definitely rent a car. Your drivers license will be valid for 90 days if you are visiting from out of state. Just keep in mind that you may have to drive on snowy highways and negotiate traffic. If you go ahead and rent, be sure to book online in advance, especially if you’re travelling close to the winter holidays.
Car hire rates fluctuate through the season, and will increase during peak holiday times, but you can shop around for the best deal. We strongly recommend you get an all-wheel drive (AWD) or Four Wheel Drive (4x4) just in case you encounter snowy roads in the high country. If you’re bringing your own gear, racks are available for an extra cost. Unless it comes free, don’t worry about getting a GPS. The highway signs make it easy to find your way, and Google maps will work just fine. Just keep on top of the conditions by checking the Colorado Department of Transportation and be on the lookout for road closures which does happen time to time.