Will other fitness gyms follow the lead of New York’s luxury health club?
Equinox is now offering cryptocurrency payments for its annual paid-in-full All Access and Destination Memberships for New Yorkers. The move to accepting crypto marks Equinox as the first gym in NYC to accept digital currency for its membership fees.
While the initial roll-out is just in New York, other markets will be announced at a later date, according to the luxury health club.
To accept the new payment method, Equinox has partnered with BitPay, a bitcoin and crypto payment provider founded in 2011. Over 250 companies and stores accept BitPay.
The luxury gym brand says accepted cryptocurrencies will include Bitcoin (BTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Dogecoin (DOGE), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), Wrapped Bitcoin (WBTC), Shiba Inu Coin (SHIB) and 5 USD-pegged stable coins (BUSD, DAI, GUSD, USDP, and USDC).
“More than ever, consumers are making luxury purchases through cryptocurrency, and offering cryptocurrency as a form of payment enables Equinox to continue to meet their community where they are — both digitally and physically — in support of members’ high-performing lifestyles,” an Equinox spokesperson told FOX Business. “Equinox’s vision is to inspire a connected community with personalized service and unparalleled experiences.”
Clients can use cryptocurrency to purchase Equinox’s $4,045 Annual All Access membership or its $4,545 Annual Destination Membership. Both memberships are available for New York clubs only.
The Annual All Access membership includes access to 80 clubs in the US, whereas the Annual Destination Membership provides exclusive access to Equinox Fitness, Destination, and Sports Clubs worldwide. Both memberships include a $500 initiation fee as well as 4.5% NYC sales tax.
To pay with BitPay, Equinox fitness enthusiasts must first obtain a pre-approved BitPay ID. When BitPay is selected as the only payment option and the user is in the BitPay payment window, the cryptocurrency to US Dollar exchange rate is locked for 15 minutes.
According to the terms, Equinox and BitPay are not responsible for any exchange rate changes if payment is not completed within the 15-minute window or in connection with any refund.
Current cryptocurrency exchange rates can be viewed here.
Accepting cryptocurrency at Equinox may set a precedent for other fitness clubs, and appears to be in line with Equinox’s efforts. Earlier this year, Equinox’s president, Scott DeRue, said that gym members have come to expect a digital presence.
“Our members are coming back to the clubs. You can also look at it in terms of demand for the Equinox experience in terms of new sales. And if you look at new sales over the last eight months, we’re outperforming sales from 2019. So demand is strong and engagement is increasing,” DeRue told Yahoo Finance.
DeRue stated that the vision of Equinox is to provide an omni multichannel experience, targeting both a digital and physical demand.
Courtney Rehfeldt has worked in the broadcasting media industry since 2007 and has freelanced since 2012. Her work has been featured in Age of Awareness, Times Beacon Record, The New York Times, and she has an upcoming piece in Slate. She studied yoga & meditation under Beryl Bender Birch at The Hard & The Soft Yoga Institute. She enjoys hiking, being outdoors, and is an avid reader. Courtney has a BA in Media & Communications studies.