The cheapest way to get to Whistler is by Greyhound. Students get a discount and a round trip costs $25.47.
However, there’s the problem of time. Whistler is open from 8:30am to 3:30am, and the best Greyhound to catch would leave Vancouver at 6:30am and get to Whistler before 8:30. After checking into the cheap motel, we can hit the slope around 9:30, before most other people get to the mountain.
But who can get to the Greyhound terminal at 6 freaking 30 am? Pardon me, they want you to get there 30-40 minutes before departure, so we need to be at the terminal before 6am.
And the terminal is at a very inconvenient place:
PACIFIC CENTRAL STATION
VIA RAIL STATION (1)
1150 STATION STREET
Vancouver, BC V6A4C7
That’s the Rail Station near Science World, ladies and gentlemen. Getting there would take around 40 minutes on a car, and over 1 hour on a bus.
In short, if we want to catch the 6:30am Greyhound, assuming there’s no one who would drive us that early, we need to get up at 4:30 am and leave for the terminal before 5am on a bus (and transfer twice).
More realistically though, if we take the 8am Grehound, we can still ski/snowboard for a good 4 hours. But that would require us to wake up at 6am and bus still.
Or we can take our time with Greyhound, spend the first day hiking around Whistler, and hit the slope as soon as it opens the next day.
I vote for the last suggestion.