Round-trips from JFK to Milan's Malpensa airport start at around $500 on Austrian Airlines (aua.com).
RIDE: The easiest, most direct route from Milan to Alagna is on a Berenzelli bus (011-39-0163-835-222), less than three hours each way and 20 bucks for a round-trip ticket.
STAY: The oldest crash pad in Alagna is the Hotel Monterosa (from $55; hotelmonterosa-alagna.it). It's a 155-year-old, 14-room slopeside base camp that once hosted Queen Margherita and now serves up loads of homemade polenta, gnocchi, and ravioli.
SKI: Because it's overshadowed by Italian-stallion resorts like Cortina d'Ampezzo and Madonna di Campiglio, Alagna never shows up on the radar of most Alps skiers. Which leaves more for you: 6,757 feet of vert, 29 lifts (including those at neighboring Monterosa), and some 20,000 acres of open bowls and big mountain lines-all for a single, $40 lift ticket.
THE TOTAL: $900