Consumer Reports: Saving money on gym memberships

Every January, many people want to get in shape and look to enroll in a gym. It's also when gyms offer deals on their membership plans, but if you haven't committed to a new gym yet - we've got some advice.

These memberships can be tricky, so Consumer Reports has tips on how to save more on a gym membership and what to look for before signing that contract.

The time is always right to get fit, but now is an especially good time to take advantage of new offers.

However, Consumer Reports advises asking for a no-commitment trial. Many gyms offer day passes to try out their facilities. And if you have friends or family interested in signing up with you, they may offer you a lower monthly rate for a group.

Gym owner, Cesar Hernandez, says trying the place before you commit will help you identify what type of gym is best for your goals.

"Are you are looking for someone to help you, to guide you from the beginning or you are looking for a gym that has machines and that you can do yourself," he said.

When you find the right gym for you, you can negotiate a better price. Speak with a salesperson or manager to see if they can give you a free month or eliminate the registration fee especially if you sign a contract. Hernandez gives his customer a significant discount when they sign a contract.

"The incentive to sign a contract is that you will save money. For example if you sign up for twelve months you can save between 40 to 50-percent compared to the person who is paying monthly," said Hernandez.

Consumer Reports says to read the contract from beginning to end.

"Look to see if there are subscription or cancellation fees and if you need to notify them months in advance to avoid being charged," said Donna Rosato from Consumer Reports.

And be sure to keep a copy of the contract in case you need to reference it in the future.

If you have health insurance through your employer, find out if they offer a discount on gym memberships. Some insurance companies offer hundreds of dollars in reimbursement if you are a member of a participating gym.

To read the full story from Consumer Reports, CLICK HERE.

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