Re: Selling Personal Training Packages of 5, 10 and 20.
What policies should I follow on no shows who signed up for a package?
What policies should I follow for a client who cancels their contract on a 5, 10 or 20 session package, after using some of their sessions. For example, a client buys a 20 Pack, and uses 15.
I sold packages at one time some years ago. It was to stimulate clients to purchase more session and give them a chance to get more for their money. They received a written agreement to sign that included a section on refunds that stated something like, “if a refund is requested the fee per session for sessions already attended is raised to the single session rate at the time the session was attended”. This stopped people wanting to get cheaper sessions for less sessions than agreed to in the package from taking advantage of my good intentions.
I later adopted a “no refund” policy. And now I don’t sell packages of sessions. I assess clients’ needs and then present them with a plan of action to approach improving their fitness. The plan is re-evaluated continuously throughout the time that they are working with me. The clients can pay as they go or for any number of sessions at one time, but I no longer discount for multiple session purchases. Clients are charged according to how much of my time and knowledge must be utilized in developing and implementing their program. Once they agree to a program and schedule sessions on my calendar, it is agreed that they will pay for all scheduled sessions in advance and there are no refunds. The payment locks in my time and their time. Paying for sessions ahead of time secures that spot on my calendar for them, but it also inhibits me from offering that time to anyone else. If they choose to schedule one session at a time, then they have less options on when they can get on the schedule. Many opt to pay for 4 to 6 sessions at a time and purchase more again as they see the calendar filling up in the future. Clients can change dates if they need to do so, but must make changes at least 48 hours before the session to be changed. I can’t offer that time to anyone else until they inform me it needs to be changed and less notice makes it very hard for me to get someone into that spot.
this dilemma is one of the reasons why I do not sell packages upfront but bill my clients at the end of the month for sessions taken with me. It also means that I do not discount sessions.
No shows are different from people wanting to cancel. This has rarely happened to me, and I usually give one-time absolution but will charge if it happens repeatedly.
When people cancel before having completed a package, I would probably refund the unused portion. The reasons are usually compelling. Life happens, and you still have another person out there who may recommend you to others. I doubt that they would do this if they felt unfairly treated (even if they were not).
I have a no-refund policy. I do give them up to 30 days from the last session to use the balance of the sessions, barring drs excuse. After a week if they have not started back up I open up their time slot, regardless.
Typically, when that happens, it’s rare that they are going to start back up anyway. Your time is just as valuable as theirs. It’s not that you don’t want to help them, because obviously you do. They do need to respect your time and respect you as a business.