You wouldn’t buy a car without taking it for a test first.
You also shouldn’t sign up for a gym without knowing what you’re getting into.
Regardless of the type of gym you want to join, you should first see if it offers any kind of free pass so you can try it out for a day, week, month, or even more.
Many gyms will get new members in the door by giving you a limited window where you can try out all of the place’s amenities without paying a dime.
If by the end of the trial you’re not into it, then you can always look elsewhere. However, you may just find the gym of your dreams in the process.
Here are some popular gym chains you can look into that offer free passes.
- 24 Hour Fitness
- Anytime Fitness
- Crunch Fitness
- Gold’s Gym
- Life Time
- Planet Fitness
- LA Fitness
Not all free passes are the same, so it helps to know what you’re getting into before signing up for a free pass.
You can even get a few passes concurrently to compare and contrast the different options out there to figure out which gym is best for you.
1. 24 Hour Fitness
24 Hour Fitness offers a three-day free pass to potential members.
You can sign up for it online and use it at multiple locations. That means for three days in a row, you can check out three separate 24 Hour Fitness gym locations to see if one is better for your needs.
It’s important to consider that amenities may differ by location.
By being able to check out several different locations, you can see first-hand what gear each gym has as well as how busy each location gets.
The pass gives you access to all the basic equipment the gym has to offer.
At 24 Hour Fitness, you’ll find amenities like cardio equipment, resistance machines, power racks, and so much more.
Specialty classes and personal training is available with the pass for an extra fee, so you’re going to have to spend some money if you want to see what classes you may want to sign up for.
Finally, you can sign up for this pass as long as you have not been a member or guest for six months.
That means you can sign up for a three-day pass once and then again six months later in case you want to get some free workouts in once more.
2. Anytime Fitness
Anytime Fitness provides prospective members with seven-day passes.
That gives you a full week to check out the gym’s amenities, and you can begin the process by going to the gym’s website.
A pass gives you access to all the basic amenities found at these gyms, which includes treadmills, bikes, and all kinds of weightlifting equipment.
One downside to this pass compared to 24 Hour Fitness is that you can only get it once. Still, a week is a long enough time to get a good sense of whether this gym chain is right for you.
Additionally, only certain locations offer free trial passes.
You can enter your zip code online to see whether any of the locations in your area offer this. If they don’t, then you’re out of luck.
3. Crunch Fitness
According to members, the length of free passes for Crunch Fitness can vary by location.
While some locations only give you a one-day pass, others give you up to seven days to check out all the things this chain has to offer.
Either way, you can sign up for your pass online and join a no-judgment environment.
In addition to cardio equipment and weights, your pass also gives you access to classes. Some locations also offer HydroMassages and tanning beds, so even if you only have a one-day pass, you can cram in all these amenities into a single session to see whether you can see yourself visiting this gym often enough to make a membership worth it.
(If you’re not happy with the free pass they’re offering, try negotiating for a better one!)
4. Gold’s Gym
Gold’s Gym offers people interested in their services a free one-day pass.
This pass can be claimed once every six months, so you can keep going back to see if you change your mind about the gym every so often.
You can get started by entering in your information online.
Restrictions vary by location, but you should gain access to all the basic amenities, such as cardio and weight-lifting gear.
Along with getting in a workout, you can also take advantage of the personal tours offered by employees, giving you a real sense of what to expect every time you step foot in the gym.
5. Life Time
Life Time gyms are among the most expensive facilities around.
Even if you don’t sign up for a membership, you can at least get a taste of the high-life by signing up for a free one-day trial.
You can request more information about the free trial and what’s entailed with a membership by going to the company’s website.
You have to be at least 18 years of age to participate, so high schoolers won’t be able to try out the amenities, even though it’s a family-friendly gym option.
You can check out what Life Time has to offer pretty frequently. A free one-day pass resets every 60 days, so you can go every other month when you want a taste of a luxury facility.
6. Planet Fitness
All Planet Fitness locations are independently-owned and -operated, so you have to check whether the one near you offers free passes.
If so, you can request a free one-day trial by filling out some basic information online.
You can request a new one-day pass once every 90 days to access all the amenities at Planet Fitness. During your visit, an employee can also show you the ropes and introduce you to all of the equipment found at most locations, such as tanning beds and massage chairs.
In the event you go back for a second free trial, then you should expect to get another tour even if you received one the first time.
Planet Fitness requires all trial members to take a tour, so it’s just something to be aware of if you plan on going for free multiple times.
7. LA Fitness
LA Fitness has one of the longer free trials around, giving you five days of workouts once every six months.
You have to be at least 16 years of age to get the pass, although 13- to 15-year-olds can sign up with a parent’s permission.
The exact amenities you can utilize vary by location, but you should expect to use the cardio equipment and weights during your visits. There will be an extra charge if you want to get involved with personal training, leagues, or courts during your free trial.
You have 30 days to use your pass once you receive it by email.
After that, you can attend the LA Fitness location nearest you for five consecutive days. Plus, you can bring a friend with your pass, too!
Equinox definitely has the most low-key free trial program.
Your best bet is to go to their website and select the gym closest to you. From there, you can schedule a visit and someone will reach out to you to tell you when you can swing by for a tour.
During this exchange, you can ask for a free trial to test the amenities for yourself. It really depends on whether the gym decides to give you a pass in the first place and how long it lasts. It’s up to the owner’s discretion, so you may not end up with anything.
Still, it’s worth a shot. Considering Equinox is one of the more expensive gyms out there, it would definitely be nice to test it out before committing to a membership.
The main difference between these gyms’ free trials is the length.
Some are only for a day while others give you a week. It shouldn’t take too long to figure out whether a gym is right for you, so it’s definitely worth it to try a few to see what all is out there.
Anytime Fitness really has the best deal with a no-hassle, seven-day trial. However, you should contact every gym near you to see what you can get.
While I covered all the major gym chains in this list, don’t forget to look into local gyms as well. Locally-owned locations are often more than happy to provide you with a free trial just to get you in the door and get your business.
Checking out the amenities first is a good recommendation. But before you sign up for anything, make sure you can afford it.
Check out our breakdown of various gyms’ prices to see what to expect at the most popular national gyms.
And for more gym guides, check out this complete box gym comparison guide.
Hope this helps!