Having multiple fitness studio memberships can be expensive and paying out of pocket for drop-in classes is rarely cheaper.
So what’s the solution?
For many Americans, the answer is ClassPass, but is ClassPass really the only game in town?
This article will walk you through what ClassPass is, give an overview of its competitors, and compare four of the most popular ClassPass alternatives: FitReserve, GuavaPass, Planet Fitness, and Yoga & Fitness Passport.
By the end of this article, you’ll know whether you should sign up for ClassPass or one of the ClassPass alternatives.
The Best ClassPass Competitors and Alternatives (Overview)
We’ve included an overview of our top picks below. For detailed information on each pick, scroll down.
What Is ClassPass?
ClassPass is the Uber of the fitness industry and is the bar against which gym memberships and multi-studio memberships are held.
ClassPass was founded in 2013 in New York City as a fitness class booking platform.
Founder Payal Kadakia was tired of having to coordinate the class schedule for multiple memberships at different gyms and fitness studios in order to have a flexible and dynamic workout routine.
Her solution was to create a company through which you could sign up for an annual subscription of class packages.
Instead of being tied to one gym like Equinox or Crunch and their class offerings, users could choose from a range of fitness classes including yoga, interval training like HIIT, pilates, spin, and so much more.
ClassPass no longer offers an unlimited membership but does have three monthly membership tiers, the price of which depends on where you live.
In big cities like NYC and San Francisco, the cost of a ClassPass membership is higher than in smaller cities like Austin or Detroit.
While ClassPass is the best known and first-to-market of all the subscription services for fitness, it is far from the only option out there anymore.
There are now a range of multi-studio fitness memberships and fitness subscription services competing with ClassPass on a local level.
None of these ClassPass competitors are in as many cities as ClassPass nor do any of the top ClassPass alternatives have offerings comparable to ClassPass Live, an on-demand, Netflix-type version of ClassPass.
ClassPass Live allows users to join live classes or stream on-demand fitness routines to their home, office, or hotel room.
FitReserve vs ClassPass
FitReserve is one of the most popular ClassPass alternatives, although it operates in far fewer markets than ClassPass does.
FitReserve is currently limited to Boston, New York City, and Washington, D.C, with plans to expand to Chicago this year.
FitReserve offers four levels of membership:
- Sampler: 3 classes per month
- Starter: 5 classes per month
- Gold: 10 classes per month
- Platinum: 20 classes per month
The price for each tier of membership depends on whether you’re in Boston, NYC, or Washington, D.C.
Members are allowed to take up to four classes at any given studio in one month.
Some of FitReserve’s popular partner fitness studios include Barry’s Bootcamp, Peloton, TRX, and Physique 57.
FitReserve claims to save members 50 percent on their classes over dropping in and booking directly with the fitness studio.
However, unlike ClassPass, unused FitReserve class credits cannot roll over from one month to the next.
Like ClassPass, FitReserve offers a free trial membership, credit for referring new members, and special promotions around holidays like New Year’s and the beginning of summer.
GuavaPass vs ClassPass
While ClassPass does operate internationally, including in cities like Singapore, there are still homegrown international ClassPass competitors.
The biggest ClassPass competitor in Asia was GuavaPass.
GuavaPass was founded in early 2015 and positioned itself as “the ClassPass of Asia” long before ClassPass started expanding internationally in 2018.
GuavaPass also expanded into the Middle East before 2018.
When ClassPass entered into markets like Singapore, marketing wars commenced for partner studios and customers.
The most obvious winners of these skirmishes were ClassPass and GuavaPass users who took advantage of the battles by switching allegiances based on current promotions.
In January 2019, ClassPass acquired GuavaPass, removing GuavaPass from the list of ClassPass competitors and converting it into a subsidiary of ClassPass.
Planet Fitness vs ClassPass
Planet Fitness is a gym that many people join instead of or in addition to ClassPass is a gym.
A Planet Fitness gym membership costs only $10 per month to access one location and just $21.99 per month to access any combination of their 1,600 locations worldwide.
For people who don’t need to be guided through strength training workouts, Planet Fitness is a great option.
For those who are less comfortable creating their own workout routines, Planet Fitness offers free trainer consultations and the ability to join a small group training session for free.
Some people choose to join Planet Fitness instead of ClassPass and others choose to use Planet Fitness for their strength training workouts and to save their ClassPass credits for boutique fitness classes like pilates, CrossFit, Pure Barre, and yoga classes.
As both ClassPass and Planet Fitness’ $21.99 membership tier allow you to visit locations in multiple cities, choosing between or even pairing these two works nicely for people who travel around the United States or even internationally.
Yoga & Fitness Passport vs ClassPass
The Yoga & Fitness Passport operates a bit differently than ClassPass.
Instead of purchasing a set number of monthly credits on a subscription basis, Yoga & Fitness Passport users pay a flat fee to access to 30 classes at partner studios.
Once purchased, the vouchers for these classes are good for six months, at which point they expire.
If the classes are all used, the price per class drops down to a mere $10.
Groupon often has Yoga & Fitness Passports on sale, for over 90 percent off the retail price of $300.
You can find these deals by entering “yoga & fitness passport Groupon” into the Google search bar.
Depending on the class, between five and 10 class vouchers may be used at any participating fitness studio partners.
Yoga & Fitness Passport classes must be reserved in advance online, just like ClassPass classes.
You can only use a Yoga & Fitness Passport once so if you’re looking for a way to vary your fitness routine in the long term, ClassPass is a better bet.
If you’re just looking to check out some new fitness classes for a few months and determine which studio is best for you, consider Yoga & Fitness Passport.
Is ClassPass Your Best Option?
Whether you should choose ClassPass or one of its competitors depends on where you live and what your fitness goals are.
If ClassPass is your only option or you’re really interested in being able to stream live workout classes as well as attend in-person ones, then ClassPass is definitely your best option.
If you live somewhere where your options are ClassPass or paying the full studio class price for all your workouts, choose ClassPass.
However, if you just want to try a few different yoga studios and it’s available in your city, then the Yoga & Fitness Passbook may be a more cost-effective option for you, especially if you can find it for sale on Groupon.
If you live in New York City, Boston, or Washington, D.C. and want to attend studios that are on FitReserve but not ClassPass, choose FitReserve.
The monthly subscription for FitReserve can be more expensive than ClassPass (depending on your city and your desired number of classes) but it’ll still be cheaper than paying the official studio class price.
And if you really want to have a gym membership and boutique studio fitness classes, pairing a ClassPass membership with a Planet Fitness gym membership could save you a lot of money while allowing you to have a diverse and engaging workout routine.
The important thing to remember is that you have options and you’re welcome to try them all.
A lot of people try ClassPass, love it, and feel no need to try any of the many ClassPass alternatives, but if you like shopping around, go for it!