Spa Deals

How To Find Great Spa Bargains

Spa Deals
••• For the best spa deals, sign up for email blasts. Photo by Anitra Brown

Spa deals are plentiful these days at all types of spas, but it takes a little work. Here's what you need to do to dig up the best spa deals and save.

  • Watch For Spa Week, with $50 spa treatments twice a year, in spring and fall.  These special weeks are one of the best spa deals out there.
  • Sign up For Emails From Your Favorite Spa. Spas don't want to advertise their spa deals, but they email or text deals to regular customers. You'll find out about last-minute discounts, classes and lectures.
  • Join Spa Deal Sites. Both Spa Week and SpaFinder email spa deals to people who sign up for them at their websites. The big deal sites like Living Social and Groupon are available throughout the country and offer spa deals, but expect to wade through a lot of non-spa offers. Remember that once you pay for one of their highly discounted spa deal, you won't get your money back even if you don't use it.
  • Travel Off-Season. If you're planning a spa vacation, rates drop dramatically when you go off-season. Think summers in Arizona or Florida and winters in the Northeast. You just have to decide if you can tolerate the off-season weather to get the deal. Shoulder seasons, which run in between high and low season, may offer good rates and decent weather.
  • Ask About Off-Peak Rates and Other Specials. Some spas charge lower rates on the days and hours that have lower demand, such as Monday through Thursday or early morning hours. You'll get the best spa deals if you book spa treatments then.
  • Join A Club. Chains like Massage Envy and facelogic offer memberships where you get a monthly treatment for around $50. Just remember, it's no-frills, and some of the massage therapists or estheticians will be newbies. It can be a good deal if you find an experienced person whose style you like.
  • Join A Rewards Program. Some spas have loyalty programs that reward regular customers with a free massage after you get ten. That's a 10% discount -- and you can go anytime you want.
  • Look For "Locals" Programs. Spas in big resort towns like Scottsdale, Las Vegas or Miami often have lower rates and special deals for locals. You have to show your drivers' license, so out-of-towners, don't apply!
  • Ask For Group Rates. If you're looking for a girlfriend getaway (think five or more), tell the spa and try to negotiate a group rate.
  • Buy A Series. Treatments that require a series such as laser hair removal and microdermabrasion are usually cheaper when you pay upfront. But it's not a deal unless it's the right treatment for you.
  • Find A Small Day Spa. If you're interested in just getting a massage or facial without all the frills, look for a small day spa. Prices should be lower than a big, glitzy day spa.
  • See A Private Practitioner.  Massage therapists or estheticians who work out of their home usually charge less than a spa. They also tend to be more highly experienced. You won't get luxury amenities, and ambiance can vary, but they can help your progress towards your wellness and beauty goals.
  • Spend The Day At A Resort Spa. If you do splurge on a resort spa, make a day of it. Get there early and use all the facilities -- steam, sauna, relaxation lounge. Don't rush off. Bring your swimsuit and a good book -- then hang out by the pool.
  • Let Students Work On You....Maybe. If you go to massage schools or esthetician schools, you can get a massage or facial for $25-$40. Personally, I don't like students working on me because they are beginners and make mistakes. I've come out from a beginner massage with my neck hurting when it felt fine going in.  I especially don't advise getting laser treatments, microdermabrasion treatments or aggressive chemical peels from a student. And remember, ambiance will be lacking.