4 January 2018

Canberrans warned to watch for the pitfalls of New Year gym memberships

| Glynis Quinlan
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Canberra Gyms

Tips for getting the best gym membership deal for your needs.

Canberrans on a ‘get fit’ drive as part of their New Year’s resolutions are being warned to make sure it is their bodies and not their wallets that get a work out when taking out gym memberships.

ACT Consumer Affairs Minister Shane Rattenbury said that every January many Canberrans resolve to get fit but the best of intentions don’t guarantee the best consumer outcomes.

Mr Rattenbury said that – as is the case with any contract or service procured – there are a few things consumers can do to ensure they are getting the best gym membership deal.

“Firstly, shop around and ensure the membership meets your needs both now and expected needs throughout the year,” Mr Rattenbury said.

“You may like to talk to current members of the gym to get their views on the gym’s offerings, see if you can participate in a free trial period, or even search online or social media for reviews. The more information you have the better.

“Secondly, read and understand contract terms and conditions, including the fine print. This is where details such as cooling off periods and if you can change membership level or plans are usually outlined,” he said.

“If you are considering taking advantage of the cooling off period, ensure you know when this expires and any terms and conditions so you can use this to your advantage.

“Finally, keep a copy of any key documents and file for future reference if needed.”

Mr Rattenbury encouraged Canberrans to also consider free fitness options given the ample choice available when it comes to exercising around the city.

“I encourage Canberrans to enjoy the fresh air, beautiful surroundings and free amenities Canberra has to offer when it comes to fulfilling any fitness resolutions in 2018,” he said.

“With fitness stations in local parks, great nature trails to hike, lakes to do water sports and nation-leading bike paths and amenities we are certainly spoiled for choice.”

Further information on consumer rights and responsibilities in relation to gym memberships is available at www.act.gov.au/fairtrading.

Have you been caught paying too much for a gym membership or paying for one that you hardly use? Let us know about your experiences in the comments below.

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