By Evann Clingan
I decided to leave ClassPass (including its Ambassador Program). This post isn’t meant to criticize a service that’s been a large part of my fitness routine for three years. Instead, I’m focusing on why the updates to the service no longer work for me.
Let’s back up for a second. As I mentioned above, I’ve been using ClassPass for three years, since it was called Classtivity. In fact, my first blog post was a review of the Passport, which allowed you to purchase one package of 10 classes. The Passport became ClassPass, which then turned into an unlimited package. ClassPass introduced me to boutique fitness, a format I immediately loved because it reminded me of the dance classes I took growing up. I also loved the variety and affordability that ClassPass offered. Over time, the brand’s customer base rapidly expanded, and I felt those growing pains as an early member. While I still loved cross training with ClassPass studios, I was frustrated at how difficult it was to get a spot in my favorite classes.
For the first two years I used ClassPass, it cost $99 per month for an unlimited membership. Last July, without warning, the price increased to $125 per month in NYC without additional services. While it wasn’t ideal to receive that news with little explanation, I stuck with ClassPass because I felt that the new price point was still worth it. In fact, I even joined the ClassPass Ambassador program last fall. Ambassadors don’t receive free memberships, but they do receive referral discounts. Fast forward to Wednesday, April 27. At 9:32am, NYC Ambassadors received an email stating that pricing would increase to $190 per month ($200 for new members) in June. This was my third day at my new job, so I didn’t think much of it when I read the email. At 9:52am, all unlimited members in NYC received the email. People went crazy. Search #ClassPass on Twitter to read some of the reactions. (Read the post The Sweat Life wrote the day of the hike.)
To be honest, I had known that the original $99 pricing was too good to be true. The ClassPass business model may have helped raise awareness for studios, but it probably didn’t help their bottom line. Again, I don’t want to focus on what these changes mean for the industry overall. There are plenty of articles being posted about that. Kayla wrote one of them. I decided to quit ClassPass because I don’t feel comfortable promoting a service that has drastically increased its pricing twice in one year without warning. I don’t feel comfortable doing that as an Ambassador. As a blogger, I aim to promote products that I use and feel are worth the cost. While ClassPass may be worth the financial cost for those who take daily classes, it’s cost me some sanity. From a member perspective, I quit because I’m ready to focus my fitness routine.
CLICK TO SHOP PRODUCTS YOU MAY BE INTERESTED IN
While I considered joining FitReserve, which is a similar service that offers 10 classes per month for $150, I’ve decided to take a break from the multi-studio subscription model. I’ve decided to buy a 50 pack of classes at Mile High Run Club. Yes, this will cost quite a bit more than ClassPass, but these decisions weren’t about the money. And yes, Mile High Run Club focuses on running and strength only. I’ll be practicing yoga at home now. I’m making this decision because I leave every Mile High class feeling stronger and more confident. The format and coaching style work for me, so this is how I’m choosing to train for the New York City Marathon this summer and fall. I’ll write a post in a month or two about how this change is playing out. Note: I still have three weeks paid on my ClassPass account, so I’ll be visiting my favorite studios before it expires!
NOTE: This post first ran on Evann Clingan's NYC fitness blog on Monday, May 2.
Evann Clingan is an endorphin-fueled redhead and fitness blogger living in New York City. By day, she works on the Influencer Marketing team at 360i. When Evann is not at the office, she’s often training or sharing her fitness adventures.
Following graduation and her move to New York, Evann was excited but intimidated by the rapidly growing fitness scene. As a non-fitness professional, she now shares her boutique fitness and race training experiences in hopes that others will find the confidence to take on similar challenges.
Evann runs destination races multiple times per year. She has crossed finish lines in San Francisco, Orlando, Vancouver, Pittsburgh, and other locations. On her blog, she also covers performance fashion, nutritious eats, charitable causes, and city life with a focus on helping others make healthier choices while keeping a packed schedule.