Planet Fitness has one of the cheapest memberships around. If you’re on a tight budget, it may seem like an appealing option to help you get fit.
But you should consider why the gym is so cheap before you join. You may find that you get what you pay for.
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Why Is Planet Fitness Cheap?
Planet Fitness is cheap because the company focuses on membership volume to make money. Allegedly, they also rely on a lot of members not going regularly. The low cost makes it easier to justify skipping a day, which turns into a week, month, or year.
Since the price is so low, members may not be as quick to cancel it. That means Planet Fitness might be making a lot of money off of people who are wasting that money.
Quantity Over Quality
Planet Fitness offers low-cost memberships to get a lot of people to sign up. They market their gym as an excellent option for people who are on a budget. The low cost is also appealing to people who haven’t gone to a gym before.
Other gyms charge a higher rate to get people who are serious about getting fit. But Planet Fitness prefers to get people to sign up and go to the gym a few times.
The company also sets up an easy payment method. That makes it easy for them to keep members, even if those people aren’t going to their local Planet Fitness regularly. Over time, that allows Planet Fitness to bring in thousands of members without losing that many people.
Reliance on Lazy People
Allegedly, Planet Fitness relies significantly on lazy people to sign up. This includes people who might go to the gym a few times before they decide to quit. But since the cost is low, members don’t see much of a reason to cancel.
Planet Fitness also uses the term “judgment free zone” to get members to sign up. That sounds great, but it’s an easy slogan to attract people who aren’t used to going to the gym. A lot of those people may realize that the gym isn’t for them.
Since it’s affordable, people may justify not going. When your gym costs $50 or $100 a month, it’s harder to make excuses without admitting that you’re wasting your money. But with its low prices, Planet Fitness doesn’t have that.
Easy to Continue
The cheap membership makes it easy for people to continue. Someone might not have time to go this week or month, but they may think they’ll go in the future. Using that logic, it makes sense to keep their membership.
They won’t have to sign up and pay the starter fee again. Not using a $10 monthly subscription for a few months may not seem like a big deal.
But that’s where Planet Fitness gets you. The company will continue to take your money no matter how often you go to work out. It’s a great deal if you’ll actually go to the gym, but it can be easy to waste your money as well.
Another thing that makes paying for Planet Fitness easy to continue is the automatic debits. When you sign up, you give the gym your checking account information. Then, they set up an electronic funds transfer (EFT).
Each month, the club will be able to debit your account to collect your membership fees. Since the fee is so small, you may not actually notice the transaction unless you review your statement.
After a few months of not going to Planet Fitness, you might forget about the charge. And if you don’t look at your account regularly, you might get used to the debit. You’ll get used to having less money to spend, so you might not even think about canceling the membership.
PF Black Card
The Planet Fitness PF Black Card is a more inclusive membership tier. It costs more than double the basic membership, but it comes with extra perks. Even with the price increase, it’s still much more affordable than some gyms.
If Planet Fitness manages to sell you on the PF Black Card, you could waste even more money. But they can also use the membership as a sales tactic. A lot of members might want things like access to massage chairs or discounts on drinks.
You could sign up for that tier and go a few times. But it can be just as easy to stop going and not realize that you’re still paying for the gym. When the more expensive tier is still cheap, you know the gym itself has a problem.
Hard to Cancel
Canceling your Planet Fitness membership can be much harder than signing up and continuing to pay the fee. For one, you have to cancel in person or through certified mail. That means you’re going to pay to spend money or time to cancel.
You also have to organize your personal details associated with your account. Then, you need to write a letter of cancellation for Planet Fitness to process the change. If you want to cancel in person, you may need to schedule a meeting.
You’ll be able to meet with someone who can cancel your membership. Even then, they might try to get you to stay so that you can access the perks. All of that plus the low fee means it can be a lot less stressful to just keep paying $10 a month.
Why Are Planet Fitness Fees Low?
Planet Fitness fees are low for a variety of reasons. The company uses the low cost as a marketing strategy to get people to join. But they also rely on a lot of those members to stop going to the gym but to continue paying the fees to keep Planet Fitness in business.