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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    112

    Initiation fees for gyms

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    Do you try to get small initiation fees waived, or don't bother? Small meaning 50 bucks.

    I have a new "Super Golds" near my house. 66,000 SF. Tons of classes at convenient times, lots and lots of machines and cycles and equipment and you name it. Two pools (one is a kiddy pool) and three classrooms (spinning, dance, and yoga - each dedicated). Indoor BB court (not that I play). You get the idea - has just about everything. Even a cardio cinema (movie theater with cycles and treadmills).

    It's still a new gym and the monthly fee is 36.99 as a teaser, for two years.

    The monthly rate is so dirt cheap, and I can afford the initiation fee (duh) but I initiation fees seem like such a ripoff. On the other hand the monthly fee is a joke for a brand new, nice gym.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Switzerland
    Posts
    2,033
    Well, it's their cost structure. I guess they are so dirt cheap, the inital admin is charged to you.
    When you buy an airplane ticket, do you try to get the fuel surcharge waived?
    Or do you heckle at the supermarket.....?
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    1,333
    do they have a penalty for canceling if you need to get out? I know a few people who had a really hard time when they wanted to leave the club.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Denver
    Posts
    1,944
    I paid at my old gym - we had an initiation fee, and a yearly upkeep fee, but the gym was only $10 a month.

    (It was pretty grit. I'm pretty sure the floor in the class studio had NEVER been cleaned.)

    I don't belong to a gym anymore. They either are moderately priced but don't offer what I want, or offer what I'm looking for and cost a fortune (which, to me, is anything over $50...a lot to pay for someone who uses next to none of the equipment).

    "I never met a donut I didn't like" - Dave Wiens

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    178
    Since most gyms frequently (and by frequently, I mean several times a year) run specials that include waiving the initiation fee, it never hurts to ask. All they can do is say no and then you can decide whether or not you want to pay it. Personally, I've never paid a sign-up/initiation fee to a gym and it doesn't seem like something I'd be likely to do in the future. *shrug*
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    2,704
    I knew that the Y offered no-fee memberships twice a year (January and September), so I waited to join until January.

    My membership does cost me a fortune, but they have a pool and they take housekeeping seriously. I've considered joining a cheaper club, but no one I've asked raves about the cleanliness

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Central Indiana
    Posts
    6,043
    I'm in the it doesn't hurt to ask camp. For profit gyms often have some wiggle room in their prices. Just read some review of LA Fitness. I'm on the board for a local Y and it doesn't have as much discretion, except for published promotions, to waive the fee. The fee is largely used as a deterrent for people who would prefer to cancel their membership during the summer months.
    Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Listen hard. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Choose with no regret. Continue to learn. Appreciate your friends. Do what you love. Live as if this is all there is.

    --Mary Anne Radmacher

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Indianapolis, Indiana
    Posts
    10,889
    You never know unless you ask. My club is expensive, but well worth it and I do utilize both equipment and a trainer there. They do often minimize or waive the initiation fee - and since it is attached to an Osteopathic hospital if a prospective member brings a note from their dr prescribing exercise they waive the entire initiation fee. They also allow you to place your membership on hold for 3 months (dues drop to $15 during that time), or for as long as needed if it is for some medical reason such as recovery from an injury or surgery.

    Check and see!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    2,704
    Quote Originally Posted by Catrin View Post
    Y They also allow you to place your membership on hold for 3 months (dues drop to $15 during that time), or for as long as needed if it is for some medical reason such as recovery from an injury or surgery.

    Check and see!
    OMG- I wish that the Y would let me do this!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Indianapolis, Indiana
    Posts
    10,889
    I pay the high dues for several reasons

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Uncanny Valley
    Posts
    14,501
    You might look around for coupon deals, too. The gym where I teach (not a chain) used to have free initiation fees on the back of grocery store receipts.
    Speed comes from what you put behind you. - Judi Ketteler

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Central Indiana
    Posts
    6,043
    Quote Originally Posted by Becky View Post
    OMG- I wish that the Y would let me do this!
    While I imagine each Y approaches it differently, I'd suggest at least asking your membership director if you have a compelling reason to put your membership on hold. I know that when the economy started to tank, we were doing our best to work with members so that they didn't have to cancel their membership altogether. The YMCA is not a for-profit gym. While they do need to generate revenue, there is a charitable mission as well, largely supported by donations, to help make the Y's programs and facilities open to all.
    Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Listen hard. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Choose with no regret. Continue to learn. Appreciate your friends. Do what you love. Live as if this is all there is.

    --Mary Anne Radmacher

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    112
    I joined. Paid the fee. It's already cheap.

    alpinerabbit, I think you mean "haggle". Heckle is what people in the audience do to comedians or politicians.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    2,704
    Quote Originally Posted by indysteel View Post
    While I imagine each Y approaches it differently, I'd suggest at least asking your membership director if you have a compelling reason to put your membership on hold. I know that when the economy started to tank, we were doing our best to work with members so that they didn't have to cancel their membership altogether. The YMCA is not a for-profit gym. While they do need to generate revenue, there is a charitable mission as well, largely supported by donations, to help make the Y's programs and facilities open to all.
    "I wanna ride my bike more" doesn't strike me as a compelling reason, especially when I know how many families have a genuine financial issue these days. This also factors into my emotional tension over looking at the less-expensive gym near work. Although I'd love to save that money each month, I'm torn about considering that as part of my decision when my Y chapter does so many good things in our community and there are those truly in need.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Indianapolis, Indiana
    Posts
    10,889
    Quote Originally Posted by Becky View Post
    OMG- I wish that the Y would let me do this!
    They might actually find it helps them if they would do this - it would catch people who might not join them otherwise.

    The main reason I pay the high dues at this club is that I USE it. I've been a member of other clubs over the years, including the Y, and I just didn't care for them and wouldn't go there after the first couple of weeks. This place works for me, and that, in the end, is what matters. I do think that being a medical based facility does provide them a different perspective, at least it helps.
    Last edited by Catrin; 08-06-2011 at 01:41 PM.

 

 

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