ClassPass Fail: what started as a steal turned out to be a waste

Last week concluded my 3 month ClassPass trial. What I was convinced would be a fun, low-effort, inexpensive way to spice up my workout routine turned out to be anything but that. It was a miserable fail.

I’ve been interested in ClassPass ever since it came on the scene. One fee, dozens of studios across town for as little as $8 per class. What’s not to love?  So, when I saw an offer in January for a 3 month trial my curiosity piqued. The deal was $22 per month for a January through March commitment. Each month included 5 classes. So, that’s $66 for 15 classes. Nearly $4 per class.

A serious steal! Or for me, a serious waste.

Let’s pause for a moment. This is coming off a little harsh. I do believe ClassPass has a place in the world. Just not MY world.

Why doesn’t ClassPass have a place in my world?

I have a workout routine that I don’t like to mess with. It doesn’t need spicing up. It’s fun, it works for me and I love it. So, forgoing my tried and true classes/workouts for the sake of trying something new didn’t appeal to me. This was my biggest issue. I am not willing to sacrifice what I already know to be awesome for my mind/body/schedule for the sake of trying something new. (Why didn’t I recognize this seemingly obvious conflict back in January you ask? I DO NOT KNOW.)

I was initially hoping to use ClassPass mostly for yoga, but I went to zero yoga classes during the three months. I had hard time finding availability at studios I wanted to try, without booking a week in advance that is. So, I stuck to my tried and true yoga classes at home that I know, trust and have already made space for in my daily life.

I expected ClassPass to work for last minute, “bonus” workouts. Heading out for an evening class once my kids are in bed or spontaneously dropping in on a new studio while my youngest is at preschool. But, again I had difficulty finding last minute spots at studios I was actually interested in. And life circumstances, like a string of winter illnesses that struck my family, made the whole 8pm workout idea a figment of my imagination.

The cancellation fees were brutal. I had to cancel the first two classes I booked. Same story with both – I had a 5:45am reservation that I had to cancel at 5am when I woke up to a sick kid. And since the cancellation was out of the 12 hour window, I had to pay the $15 cancellation fee. Yikes. Kick me while I’m down, why don’t ya?

Studios that I already know and love are not on ClassPass. For example: BurnCycle, Orange Theory, Yoyo Yogi. Yes, I knew this going into the deal. It was not a surprise. But still, the idea of using ClassPass would have been much more appetizing had a few more high-value studios been included.

It took me nearly 2 months to take my first class. I chock this up to all of the above. Plus an existing commitment called, Parenting.


Finally, in the month of March I used ClassPass. I visited a cycle studio for a morning class. I was one of five people in the 40+ bike studio. The experience was fine. Unimpressive. Not worth returning to.

And my second time using ClassPass was… oh, there was no second time. I used it once. One single time. In three months.

It was a total waste. Let me break this down again. And I’ll remind you that what sold me on the ClassPass trial was the $4 per class “steal”.

Total: $22 for 3 months = $66

$15 cancellation fees x 2 = $30

Total classes taken = 1

Price per class = $96

F**k!! I literally could have bought five classes at my beloved BurnCycle for that.

And while I did just spend $96 for one 45 minute ride, I don’t totally despise ClassPass. It has a place in the world. Just not MY world.

What world does ClassPass have a place in?

  • Fitness folk who don’t have an established workout routine at existing studios or gyms.
  • People who have the flexibility to zoom over town to check new studios and classes.
  • Those willing to try new instructors and classes without an established reputation. (i.e. willing to take a risk.)
  • Someone who recently moved to a new area and is looking to get an idea of the fitness scene by dabbling in studios for a few months.
  • Just last month ClassPass added on demand video workouts. For those who don’t already have at home workouts to do, this could be a cool feature.

Are there any ClassPass lovers out there? I’d love to hear from you – what worked, what didn’t and how do avoid this seemly inevitable $15 cancellation fee?!

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2 Comments

  • Reply
    starr
    05/12/2017 at 2:24 pm

    Oh Nate, that sucks!

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