work for you?
ClassPass Review – Is It a Deal or Should You Pass?
When you work a nine-to-five desk job, it's not always easy to find the time — or motivation — to exercise. I try to stay in shape by taking walks at lunch, but turns out, that's not quite enough.
In my office, there’s always a potluck, a birthday cake, or someone who just had to bring in a few dozen donuts. Plus, the snacks. If my job paid us strictly in bags of potato chips and Cup Noodles, I swear the office would remain fully staffed.
So, in an attempt to stay healthy, I gave ClassPass a try. It's a subscription-based fitness class booking service that offers a variety of exercise and wellness classes in over 39 cities nationwide, as well as in Australia and London. Here's what I learned.
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How Does ClassPass Work?
ClassPass allows you to book local fitness classes online or through their app. You don’t have to be a tech genius or a fitness freak to figure it out — I am certainly neither. Once you sign up for an account, you'll get a set amount of credits to use each month.
You use credits to book classes, and certain activities (like spa treatments) cost more credits than others. Additionally, if you don't use all of your credits in a given month, up to 10 of them will roll over to next one.
You can search by studio or location to book, but, unfortunately, not class type, which is a bit annoying. Let’s say you want to get your namaste on and give yoga a try; if you search “yoga” in the Find a Studio search bar, studios that have “yoga” in their name will come up. That’s handy, but not if you’re missing out on a great yoga studio named The Lotus Flower or a cycling studio named Ride.
Besides that hiccup, it’s easy to book classes. The site offers a description of each class, and will also tell you if there’s anything special you need to bring, like non-slip socks for Pilates. You’ll also receive a reminder email a day or so before your upcoming class.
In my experience, classes did not fill up too quickly, but I'm a planner-extreme by default, so I booked all my classes at least two days in advance. Regardless, most studios cater to folks with a standard work schedule, which means lots of morning and evening classes — though popular ones may fill up fast.
Finally, once you complete a class, you will be prompted to evaluate it using a five-star scale. You're only allowed to review classes you’ve actually taken, so you can trust that there aren’t any false assessments out there. You can leave tips, recommend an instructor, offer constructive criticism, or just select a level of stars. So far, I have only given fives.
How Much Does ClassPass Cost, and Is It Worth It?
ClassPass regularly runs promotions for new members, and I took advantage of the latest one which offered 30 workout classes for $30 (valid for the first month only). ClassPass will even offer free months for new members on occasion.
It is a subscription service though, so when that first 30 days is up, your membership will renew at a higher cost, depending on which membership level you select and where you live. In Los Angeles, a membership will run you $49 a month for 27 credits (worth 3-4 classes), $79 a month for 45 credits (worth 5-8 classes), and $139 a month for 85 credits (worth 9-14 classes). But if you live in rainy Seattle, the top tier is only $119 a month. You can check here for the prices in your area.
So is ClassPass worth the cost? Thirty classes for $30 is definitely a steal, but what if you’re still in full New Year’s Resolution mode (good for you) and plan to take 10 classes a month. In LA, that’s $11.50 a class, which is a lot cheaper than a private studio. A Pilates class I attended runs $35 for a single visit, with the national average being between $20 and $30 a class.
Of course, if you buy a class package or unlimited membership at a studio, the cost decreases. But then you'll be tied to that studio, which means a lot less variety in the type of classes you can take.
Another thing to keep in mind is that you can visit most studios as many times as you want, but it will cost you. Depending on your plan, you can visit the same place only one to three times per billing cycle. After that, you'd have to pay for add-on classes.
Canceling a ClassPass Class
If you cancel less than 12 hours before your next class, there is a $15 late cancel fee. If you don’t show up and forget to cancel, that’s a $20 fee. Even though this policy can be annoying in the case of an emergency, it's good motivation to help you get your butt in that cycling class seat.
How to Cancel Your ClassPass Subscription
Welcome to my constant fear, especially regarding subscription services. If you need to cancel your ClassPass account, there’s good news and bad news.
First, you must request to cancel at least three days before the start of your next billing cycle in order to avoid auto-renewal for the next month. However, if you cancel and decide to rejoin at some point when you are flush with cash again, there is a $79 reactivation fee. Boo!
The good news is that you can place your membership on hold for an unlimited amount of time to the tune of $15 per month, plus you can still enjoy one monthly class. If you go that route, you must request it at least one day before your next billing cycle.
Is ClassPass Right for You?
If classes are your thing and you’re into trying new types of exercise, I think ClassPass is worth it. Not to brag, but I have quit the gym countless times. Classes work best for me.
I will never start a workout class, then quit halfway through. The embarrassment would kill me, but I will totally hop on a treadmill with the intention of jogging for 45 minutes, then decide that 15 is good enough. Basically, your judgement is my motivation.
On the other hand, if you want to become a boxing champion or hot yoga guru, I’d say just buy a package directly from the gym or studio — just do the math first.
One last fun fact: You can earn rewards! If you refer three friends to ClassPass (and they actually sign up) you get $40 off. So if you can twist a good friend’s arm (or three) and promise to be each other’s motivation buddies, it may just be worth it.
Happy sweating! May you never be as sore as I am right now.
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