LA Fitness Uptown Dallas, Texas Why LA Fitness isn't what you signed up for. Dallas Texas
In 2012 I was a happy member of Bally’s Total Fitness; they told me because of a merger they were closing the location close to my home, so I set out to find a new gym to try to abate the poundage that I know I am prone to add on due to a ton of factors. I tried a week here, a week there, and i found that the LA Fitness close to my home was the most convenient and seemed to be the best priced. I paid a couple hundred dollar initiation fee, and my first month there. Then I was told that before I could start working out there, I must have a session with one of their personal trainers. I said sure, sounds good, maybe I can learn a thing or two from this guy. He took me around had me do some crazy strenuous arm workouts, still excited I thought it was pretty cool. Then he said he wanted to test my fitness level, he had me plank for 3 minutes and told me that why I was shaking was that my core was out of shape. I thought that was a bit fishy, especially since I just spent the last 45 minutes working out my arms, which were currently holding me up. He took me back to his cubicle, and showed me a laminated picture of a woman that was a bodybuilder, and he told me that “this is what I did for her, I can do that for you too”. It clicked, The reason the monthly fee was cheaper was that they would spend plenty of the time I was trying to improve my body selling me on tens of thousands of dollars worth of personal training sessions. He suggested that I should sign up for 3 sessions a week, but I had to purchase them in a bundle and had to pay for them whether I used them or not. What!? So I just declined and showered up, then he met me outside the locker room to tell me that they had a special, only after I declined the price changed? After working out there for a few months, I talk with some other members and find out that some paid more than me, and some paid drastically less, and hadn’t paid a huge initiation fee. It turns out if I had paid only $20 more on that first day that I could have prepaid for 2 years, and had no initiation fee?!? So I asked to speak to the general manager of the gym. He told me that yes, I could purchase those 2 years for much less than I was paying, but whatever I had already paid was theirs and I would never get that back. I stopped going there for a few months, still paying every single month. I went to another gym, and another gym, just trying to find something that would fit in my schedule. I decided to go back, I was paying for it anyway, might as well go, it wasn’t worth losing my initiation fee to go to another gym. I had a friend come in to town, and I told him that my membership comes with “guest privileges” , so i signed him up, and we decided to go over and have a work out, I haven’t worked out with him in years anyway. We merrily drive over, and go to the front desk to sign in, and “since he doesn’t live within 25 miles of this location, he will have to purchase a day pass for $20”, but there is a LA fitness just down the street from his house, if he likes this gym, he might want to sign up there, ugh, another $20 I have now paid for a “privilege” that I already pay for. Over the years, dealing with some filthy showers, locker rooms, broken saunas, and equipment constantly waiting for maintenance. All of a sudden I notice that there are these barricades going up in the areas where you stretch before you workout, and gradually they consumed mats, weights, and pieces of equipment that I use regularly. I ask the person at the front desk why these areas are no longer accessible. I’m told that those areas are only for people who pay for personal training sessions. Great, another thing I have to pay for just to get access to equipment I have been using for years. However, the straw that broke the camel’s back is that they changed my membership. When I signed up and paid that giant fee, I was told that I have a membership that would let me work out at any LA fitness, anywhere, any time they were open. When I looked at my account, it was an all club account, giving me access to literally every LA fitness that existed. I recently moved, and another gym was closer now, and was a little part of my decision to move to the area I did. When I went to check in to this gym, I was told that my session today would be free, but if I ever come to that gym again, that they will automatically bill me an extra $5 for every time I check in there. What? I thought I had access to every single gym with LA fitness on the outside? No sir, you only have a multi-gym membership now, and you will have to pay an extra $150 a year to have the all gym membership. Wasn’t what I paid for an all gym membership? Enraged I called customer service, which never ends well with LA fitness, I had already asked them to move my “home gym” to that location anyway, which still seemed to have never happened. I spoke with representative after representative, supervisor after supervisor, and finally I thought I had someone on the line that could help with the situation, I calmed myself to rationally explain the situation and ask for help. When I was told the only way I would ever get to use the gym close to my home was to shell out even more money, I informed the gentleman that the terms of our contract state that I will have access to every single LA fitness gym that exists, and he should honor the terms of our contractual agreement, if he didn’t I would be forced to cancel my account with them. All of a sudden they were offering a special again. If I just signed a contract with them, I would only have to pay $10 more per month, and would be able to access that gym, my math may not be great, but that does sound like $120 more per year. “That’s okay I’ll just cancel” I informed him, when he hung up the phone on me. He hung up, what great customer service from a multinational corporation that I have spent thousands on, and wasted years of my life trying to get to work out all because I paid a massive upfront fee and didn’t want to just throw that money away. Well I am proud to tell you that as of today that fee is thrown out, and I’m off to find my next gym.Was it easy to quit, no. I called and called more, trying to cancel, I was told that if I wanted to cancel, I would have go to the gym where I had originally signed up, and cancel there. Now I have to drive across town to an area that I haven’t lived in in years, and hunt down someone that can help me. Aish, signing up for this gym may have been the most expensive and disappointing experience I have had to deal with just to keep a few pounds off.