Is An Anytime Fitness Membership Worth It? (Honest Review)

Is An Anytime Membership Worth It

Anytime Fitness is a 24-hour chain gym with over 4,500 locations worldwide.

I recently visited Anytime Fitness with one of my friends to find out if a membership is worth it.

So is an Anytime Fitness membership worth it? An Anytime Fitness membership is worth it for non-competitive powerlifters, CrossFitters, or recreational gym-goers. The facilities are clean, there’s a good mix of strength and cardio equipment, and the gym is convenient since you can use your membership at any location and they’re open 24/7.

In this article, I’ll talk about what my experience was like when I visited and why an Anytime Fitness membership is worth it for most people.

I’ll also discuss:

My Experience Working Out At Anytime Fitness

Anytime Fitness

As soon as I walked into the Anytime Fitness in Cliffside Park, NJ, I felt like I belonged. The gym had a positive and welcoming vibe that’s hard to accomplish in a chain gym.

The staff was friendly and helpful and never once pushed me into signing up for a membership. They gave me a quick tour of the gym and made sure I didn’t need any assistance before I started working out.

I didn’t notice any members doing anything inappropriate while I was there, but I’ve heard that the staff at this location is serious about maintaining a safe environment for everyone. I have no doubt that they’d jump in if anyone felt uncomfortable or people were breaking the rules.

The type of people you’ll see at Anytime Fitness depends on when you go. The early morning gym-goers tend to be dedicated individuals and while they’re polite, they’re more likely to stick to their own routines and not talk to anyone else.

In the late morning, you’ll probably find seniors and women in their 30s or 40s, who I presume are stay-at-home moms. At lunchtime and in the evening, you’ll find people from a variety of age groups since most people will be working out on their lunch breaks or after work.

From what I’ve seen, the members enjoy working out at the Cliffside Park location. When I visited, it seemed like there were tight-knit groups of friends who either took the group classes together or did similar workouts together and kept each other motivated.

The Anytime Fitness location I visited is small, but every section of the gym is labeled. The cardio machines, resistance machines, and free weights all have their own areas. There’s also a separate training area for some group classes and functional fitness workouts.

If I didn’t have my home gym, I would sign up for an Anytime Fitness membership. The employees and members were all friendly when I visited, and the overall environment was welcoming and motivating. It didn’t have a ton of equipment, but the equipment they do have suited my goals and I was able to get a good workout in while I was there.

It’s important to note that this review is based on my experience at the Cliffside Park, NJ location. Other locations will have different equipment, classes, and amenities. To find out if Anytime Fitness is the right gym for you, I recommend calling or dropping in to try it out for yourself.

Anytime Fitness: Pros & Cons

Anytime Fitness

Each gym will have some good and bad things about it. Below are the pros and cons of Anytime Fitness.

Pros

  • The environment is friendly and motivating. If you’re new to fitness and nervous about going to the gym for the first time, the staff will make you feel comfortable. There is also a lot of contagious, positive energy in the gym.
  • You can go to the gym 24 hours a day. Members can use their key fobs to get into the gym at any time of the day or night.
  • You can use your membership at any location. Anytime Fitness has over 4,500 locations all over the world. With your membership, you can go to any location and use all of the equipment and amenities.

Cons

  • Anytime Fitness doesn’t have a lot of amenities. Anytime Fitness doesn’t have amenities like childcare, pools, saunas, and basketball courts even though their memberships cost as much as or more than other gyms that offer these services.
  • Most locations don’t allow you to use chalk or drop weights. This isn’t a big deal for people who powerlift as a hobby, but Anytime Fitness isn’t an ideal place for competitive powerlifters.

How Much Does An Anytime Fitness Membership Cost?

Anytime Fitness

Every Anytime Fitness location has its own membership plans. To give you an idea of how much you can expect to spend, below are the membership options available at the Cliffside Park, NJ location.

12-Month Plan

The 12-month plan costs $29.50 plus tax every two weeks. It includes:

  • 24-hour gym access every day of the week
  • Free fitness consultation and 30-day fitness plan
  • Member-exclusive app with access to a new workout every day

24-Month Plan

The 24-month plan includes everything in the 12-month plan but costs $27.50 plus tax every two weeks.

Planet Fitness made our list of Best Gyms For Seniors. Check out why we recommended it and who else made the list.

Additional Costs

When you join, you’ll have to put down a deposit equal to the cost of one bi-weekly payment. You’ll also have to pay a $99 fee for a Success Kit, which covers administrative and onboarding costs, and a fee of about $25 for your key fob.

Free Trials

Anytime Fitness offers free 7-day trials to anyone who has not been a member in the past.

Looking for a gym that offers free passes or trials? Check out our detailed guide: 14 Gyms With Free Passes & Trials.

Referrals

A few times throughout the year, Anytime Fitness has promotions where you can get one month free for each friend or family member you refer.

Student Discounts

Most Anytime Fitness locations offer student discounts, but they vary by location. Some clubs offer a flat student fee of around $35/month while others offer a 15% discount off the cost of a regular membership.

If you’re a student, membership costs might be cheaper. Check out our article Best Gyms With Student Discounts

Gym Equipment

Anytime Fitness

The cardio and resistance machines at Anytime Fitness are from the typical fitness equipment suppliers such as Precor and Octane. Most of the treadmills, stationary bikes, rowers, and ellipticals at the Cliffside Park location are from Life Fitness. I know of some locations that also have a couple of Rogue Echo bikes.

In the personal training area, you’ll find battle ropes, TRX ropes, tires for tire flipping, medicine balls, slam balls, kettlebells, and plyo boxes.

Anytime Fitness

The resistance machines at the location I visited were from Hammer Strength. There were either Hammer Strength grip plates or bumper plates that go up to 55lbs located throughout the gym.

The barbells were either Beast Olympic barbells from CAP or Olympic barbells from Hammer Strength. They weren’t the best but I was able to complete my workout with them with no problem.

The Anytime Fitness in Cliffside Park also had a BandBell Bamboo Barbell and a Rogue Safety Squat bar, which I thought was cool after visiting a lot of other chain gyms that didn’t have specialty equipment like this.

The round dumbbells in the free weights area go up to 150lbs. There were hex dumbbells in the training area, but they only went up to 50lbs. There were also preloaded EZ curl bars that went up to 100lbs.

The Cliffside Park location also had one bench press station, two flat benches, and two incline benches in the free weights area.

Does Anytime Fitness Have Squat Racks?

Anytime Fitness

Anytime Fitness has squat racks. The Cliffside Park location has two power cages, but I’ve seen other locations that have five or six squat racks or power cages.

Does Anytime Fitness Have Deadlift Platforms?

The Cliffside Park location didn’t have deadlift platforms, but other locations have platforms attached to their squat racks.

Special Features & Amenities

As I mentioned earlier, Anytime Fitness doesn’t have as many amenities as other gyms. But depending on the location, you can usually find more than just gym equipment.

Does Anytime Fitness Have a Pool?

Anytime Fitness does not have a pool.

Want a gym that has a pool? Check out our guide: 10 Best Gyms With Pools, Saunas, & Hot Tubs.

Does Anytime Fitness Have a Sauna?

Anytime Fitness does not have a sauna.

Does Anytime Fitness Have Showers and Locker Rooms?

Anytime Fitness has showers, but not all locations have lockers.

Want our full list of gyms with showers? Check out our guide: 18 Best Gyms With Showers (Cleanliness & What’s Included).

Does Anytime Fitness Have Basketball or Racquetball Courts?

Anytime Fitness does not have any basketball courts or racquetball courts.

Want a gym that has a basketball court? Check out our guide: Best Gyms With Basketball Courts.

Does Anytime Fitness Have Childcare?

Anytime Fitness does not have childcare services.

Want a gym that has a pool? Check out our guide: 12 Best Gyms With Childcare (What To Expect, Rules, Cost)

Does Anytime Fitness Have Tanning Beds?

Tanning beds aren’t standard amenities at most Anytime Fitness locations, but some clubs have one or two. You may have to reserve a time slot whenever you want to use them.

Want a gym with tanning? Check out our guide: Best Gyms With Tanning (What’s Expected, Cost, How To Use)

Does Anytime Fitness Have a Yoga Studio?

Most Anytime Fitness locations have studios, but they’re used for group classes as well as for yoga. You can usually find room to stretch in an unused section of the gym floor if there are classes in session in the studio.

Does Anytime Fitness Have a Smoothie Bar?

Anytime Fitness doesn’t have a smoothie bar, but most locations have refrigerators or vending machines at the front desk for water, beverages, and snacks.

The Cliffside Park, NJ location also sells protein powder, pre-workout, and other supplements.

Does Anytime Fitness Have Massage Chairs?

Some Anytime Fitness locations have HydroMassage beds, which use water and pressurized jets to massage the muscles and soft tissues of the body.

Does Anytime Fitness Have a Women’s-Only Area?

Most Anytime Fitness locations don’t have women’s-only sections.

Does Anytime Fitness Have Group Classes?

Anytime Fitness

Anytime Fitness has group classes, but they vary by location. Not all locations have group classes such as Zumba, Les Mills, or Pilates, but they offer group conditioning, strength, and yoga classes.

Does Anytime Fitness Have a Cardio Cinema Room?

Anytime Fitness does not have a cardio cinema room.

Is Anytime Fitness Open 24 Hours a Day?

Anytime Fitness is accessible 24 hours a day, but the staff isn’t onsite 24/7.

Does Anytime Fitness Have Red Light Therapy?

Only a handful of locations have red light therapy booths. Red light therapy is also referred to as low-level light therapy and can help reduce inflammation, prevent tissue damage, and treat skin issues.

Who Does Anytime Fitness Cater To?

Anytime Fitness

Anytime Fitness is a good gym for people with all kinds of goals and training backgrounds, though it’s not the best gym for competitive powerlifters or professional bodybuilders.

People who enjoy group classes will enjoy Anytime Fitness. Some locations offer traditional group classes such as Zumba and boot camp, while other locations offer team workouts. These are small group sessions with three different levels — Base, Burn and Build — that cater to people with different experience levels and goals.

Anytime Fitness is a good gym for people who powerlift as a hobby. It has multiple squat racks or power cages and several benches as well as dumbbells and machines for accessories. The only drawback is that not all locations allow chalk, which makes it less than ideal for competitive powerlifters.

Since Anytime Fitness has training areas with functional fitness equipment, it’s a good place for CrossFitters. There are bumper plates, kettlebells, plyo boxes, and pullup bars, so you can do most WODs.

However, if you’re coming from a CrossFit box you’re probably used to dropping weights from overhead, which isn’t allowed at Anytime Fitness. If you do want to do CrossFit WODs there, you’ll need to set the weights down carefully after overhead squats, thrusters, push presses, and other overhead barbell movements.

For people who enjoy HIIT workouts, you can do your workouts in the functional training area or in the studio where group classes are held. Anytime Fitness locations are usually small, but you may be able to find free space on the gym floor to do them as well.

There isn’t a huge selection of resistance machines at Anytime Fitness. It’s enough for people who just want to stay healthy or look good, but it may not be enough for professional bodybuilders.

Because of the supportive environment, Anytime Fitness is a good choice for anyone who wants to lose weight. The personal trainers can develop customized training plans for you, and some trainers have nutrition certifications as well. This also makes them good resources for people who are new to fitness.

Some locations have InBody scales for members to track their weight, body fat, and lean muscle mass. Results from InBody scans are similar to those of DEXA scans, which are known to produce the most accurate results.

Specific Information For Women

I know of some Anytime Fitness locations that are for women only, but the one I visited was co-ed. It didn’t have a women’s-only area, but I didn’t feel uncomfortable at all when I was there.

It’s a small gym and not as well-known as other gyms in my area, so I think that helps keep most of the creeps away. From what I’ve seen, it also tends to have more female members than male members.

One important thing to note is that some locations have single bathrooms that both men and women can use. If this makes you uncomfortable, you may want to consider another gym that has gender-specific bathrooms.

Anytime Fitness Gym Policies

Re-Opening Policy & What Happens To Membership In A Lockdown?

Anytime Fitness

When we first went into lockdown in March 2020, most Anytime Fitness locations automatically froze all of their memberships. During that time, they offered virtual training and free workout videos to all of its members. I think it’s possible they would do the same thing again if we had to go into another lockdown. 

Now that gyms are open again, some Anytime Fitness locations have started implementing capacity restrictions. The gym equipment is cleaned every two hours and the bathrooms are cleaned every hour.

Where possible, machines are placed six feet apart or labeled as off-limits so members aren’t too close to each other. Sharing equipment such as bars and dumbbells isn’t allowed. Many locations are also monitoring the gyms via video to make sure COVID-19 protocols are followed.

Every Anytime Fitness location is following local mask rules, so I recommend checking with your home club about its mask policies before you visit.

Policy On Dropping Weights, Grunting, & Chalk

Each Anytime Fitness location has its own policies on dropping weights, grunting, and using chalk.

I was not allowed to use chalk at the Cliffside Park location, but I’ve heard of members at other clubs being able to use it.

I also asked about dropping weights and I was told that’s not allowed, either. If you need to bail a squat in the power cage you could do so, but you’re not allowed to drop weights from overhead or slam the barbell on the ground when doing deadlifts.

There are no rules against grunting, but the staff members told me that they still want their members to be respectful of other people working out around them. 

Cancellation Policy & Contract Length

Although the Anytime Fitness location I visited has 12- and 24-month membership plans, other locations also offer month-to-month contracts.

Members with month-to-month plans can cancel at any time. Members with 12- or 24-month agreements can cancel early, but you may still have to pay for any unused time left on your contract as well as an early cancellation fee of $150.

To cancel an Anytime Fitness membership, you’ll need to visit the club in person or send certified mail. You have to give at least 30 day’s notice unless you want to cancel within 7 days of becoming a member. In that case, you can terminate your membership immediately.

You also don’t have to pay a cancellation fee if you move to a location that doesn’t have an Anytime Fitness within 25 miles. You may have to provide proof of your new residence, though.

If you just want to freeze your membership, you can do so for at least one month and up to three months. You’ll need to provide 30 days’ notice before the freeze goes into place.

Some locations may ask you to provide a doctor’s note before approving the freeze. You’ll still need to pay reduced monthly fees during the freeze period, and you can’t cancel your membership while it’s frozen.

Guest Policy: Can You Bring A Friend or Wife/Husband?

Each location has its own guest policies, but you can usually bring a guest during staffed hours. They’ll have to register as a guest at the front desk before they’re allowed to work out.

Pet Policy: Can You Bring Your Dog To Workout?

Only certified service dogs are allowed at Anytime Fitness.

Are Anytime Fitness Memberships Transferable?

Whether or not you can transfer your membership to someone else depends on the location. 

In most cases, as long as you’re a member in good standing and the other person hasn’t been a member within the past 6-12 months, you can transfer your membership to another individual. You may have to pay a transfer fee of up to $50.

You can transfer your home club location to another one by speaking to a staff member. If you’re moving, your new residence needs to be at least 10 miles away from your current Anytime Fitness location in order for the transfer to be approved. There are no transfer fees if you change your location, but your monthly costs may increase depending on the rates at your new gym.

Does An Anytime Fitness Membership Work Anywhere?

You can use your Anytime Fitness Membership at any location in the world, but you have to have been a member for at least 30 days to visit another location.

Is There A Dress Code?

There is no strict dress code at Anytime Fitness. They only ask that you use common sense and avoid clothing that is super revealing or inappropriate for the gym. I’d also recommend not wearing anything too baggy or clothes with decorative items that can get caught on the machines.

I asked the staff at the Cliffside Park, NJ location about lifting barefoot, and they were okay with it as long as I kept socks on. Rules about lifting barefoot may vary by location, and they may also depend on who’s working there at the time. I recommend checking with your home club to ensure you’re not breaking any rules.

Can My Child Work Out At Anytime Fitness?

Children who are at least 13 years old can work out at most Anytime Fitness locations. Some locations don’t allow any minors and only people who are 18 or older are allowed. I recommend calling your local club to ask about their minimum age requirements if your child is interested in working out.

Is Anytime Fitness Personal Training Worth It?

Anytime Fitness

I’ve heard good things about the personal trainers at the Cliffside Park, NJ location, but the quality of trainers will vary by location.

Anytime Fitness personal trainers must have certifications from accredited institutions such as the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) or the American Council on Exercise (ACE). Some locations also require degrees in Kinesiology or Exercise Science, which is more than some other chain gyms require of their personal trainers.

Personal training sessions start at $35-$45 per hour but can go as high as $60-$75 per hour. Some locations offer 30-minute sessions as well with prices starting at $25-$30 per session.

If you’re interested in personal training, I recommend asking your club if they have packages available. You may be able to get packages for 5, 10, or 20 sessions, which will be more cost-effective in the long run.

Anytime Fitness memberships come with one free personal training consultation. If you’re not yet comfortable in the gym or don’t know where to start, I would take advantage of it. A trainer will show you around the gym and give you a 30-day workout plan to help get you started.

I saw a couple of people working with trainers when I visited, and it looked like they were enjoying their workouts. I would recommend Anytime Fitness personal training sessions to people who are new to fitness, people who need motivation and accountability from a trainer, and anyone who wants to switch up their routine. 

However, if you’ve already been training for several years and know your way around a gym, you probably don’t need a personal trainer unless you’re working towards a specific goal and having trouble getting there on your own.

Want our list of gyms with a personal trainer? Check out our guide: 9 Best Gyms With Trainers (And, How Not To Get Ripped Off)

Tips For New Members

1. Read Your Contract Carefully

Anytime Fitness isn’t the best at disclosing all of its fees. In addition to an initiation fee, you also have to pay a one-time fee of about $25 for your key fob and an annual fee at some locations. 

Some locations also charge biweekly instead of monthly. Make sure you understand how often your gym will charge you so you don’t have any surprises when you check your bank statement or credit card bill.

2. It’s Your Responsibility To Sign Up for the Free Consultation When You First Join

As I mentioned earlier, you get one free consultation and a 30-day fitness plan when you first join Anytime Fitness. However, the staff won’t automatically sign you up for it. If this is something you’re interested in, you’ll have to set it up yourself.

3. Download the Anytime Fitness App

Most chain gyms have mobile apps these days, but I like Anytime Fitness’s app in particular because you can connect it to a Fitbit or other fitness tracking device. The app is free for members and you can use it to have video chats with a trainer, sign up for classes, and track your workouts.

Anytime Fitness Complaints

Most people who complain about Anytime Fitness are frustrated because of how difficult it is to cancel memberships. Their cancellation policies are standard for chain gyms in that you have to show up in person or send a certified letter to cancel, but a lot of members get upset when they can’t cancel on the phone or via email.

There are also complaints that Anytime Fitness continues to charge people after they submit cancellation requests. I recommend asking for written confirmation when you cancel in case you run into issues later on.

Some former members who had fixed-term contracts have said that Anytime Fitness automatically renewed their contracts without giving them a heads up.

I’ve also heard some complaints that the corporate offices are hard to reach, but if you’re a member in good standing and you’ve developed a good relationship with the employees at your gym, they can help you resolve whatever issues you have.

Alternatives to Anytime Fitness

Anytime Fitness

If you don’t have an Anytime Fitness near you or you just don’t think it’s the right gym for you, here are some alternatives you may want to consider instead.

1. LA Fitness

An LA Fitness membership will cost about the same as Anytime Fitness, but it has more amenities. If you’re comfortable with the price point of Anytime Fitness but want to be able to swim, play basketball, or have someone watch your kids while you workout, LA Fitness is a good option.

Check out our complete review of LA Fitness.

2. Gold’s Gym

Most Gold’s Gyms are quite a bit larger than Anytime Fitness gyms, and they often have more amenities for comparable prices. You may not find the same tight-knit community at Gold’s as you would at Anytime Fitness, but in my experience, the staff and members are still friendly and helpful.

Gold’s Gym is a great place for beginners and experienced gym-goers alike, so you’ll feel comfortable there regardless of how extensive your training history is.

Check out our complete review of Gold’s Gym.

3. GoodLife Fitness

If you live in Canada, GoodLife Fitness is a good gym with a lot of equipment and amenities. Its membership plans aren’t that much more expensive than Anytime Fitness, and GoodLife is also accessible 24 hours a day. The quality of equipment can vary depending on the location, but you can usually find plenty of benches, squat racks, cardio, and resistance machines.

Check out our complete review of GoodLife Fitness.

Other Gym Reviews

Anytime Fitness Gym Comparisons

Final Thoughts

Anytime Fitness is a great gym that’s ideal for people with all kinds of training backgrounds and goals. It has a nice selection of free weights cardio and resistance machines, the staff is supportive, and the members are friendly.

One of the only drawbacks of Anytime Fitness is that it doesn’t have a lot of amenities. If things like saunas, pools, and smoothie bars are important to you, I’d consider another gym. But if you’re looking for a motivating atmosphere to train in with well-maintained equipment and clean facilities, you can’t go wrong with an Anytime Fitness membership.


About The Author

Amanda Dvorak

Amanda Dvorak is a freelance writer and powerlifting enthusiast. Amanda played softball for 12 years and discovered her passion for fitness when she was in college. It wasn’t until she started CrossFit in 2015 that she became interested in powerlifting and realized how much she loves lifting heavy weights. In addition to powerlifting, Amanda also enjoys running and cycling.