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I’m a sucker for spa massages, facials, and haircuts. How could I not be? During my time working in a spa as an esthetician, I lived a spoiled life where my massage therapists and I could trade services and get massages and facials for free.
Now that I’ve moved on from that career, I unfortunately no longer get that luxury of free pampering.
The first year after my life at the spa, I found myself haggard. Unkempt. Wild. My hair was sprinkled with split ends, my skin was constantly breaking out, and my back was forever sore.
One day while I was casually window shopping on Groupon, I stumbled upon a 1-hour massage at a local spa for $35, valued at $60. Groupon was also offering an additional 20% off of local deals, so I punched in the coupon code and my total went down to $28, saving me another $7.
Now, for those of you who don’t regularly visit Southern California spas, $28 for a massage at a spa is pretty darn good. We have a lot of foot reflexology massage businesses here for around that price, but that style of massage tends to be really rough and usually results in a bunch of bruises and soreness as if I’ve been hit by a truck the next day. Dumbfounded, I hit the Purchase button.
I never looked back!
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I excitedly called the spa and booked an appointment for two days later. The result? I enjoyed every minute of it and it was worth every penny!
Now I don’t say this just because of the low price, but the quality of the massage was exceptional and definitely compared to the spa that I used to work at. A part of my job was to visit other spas and try out their services to compare styles and quality. This Groupon massage was the real deal!
After this positive experience I started to shop for spa treatments more frequently on Groupon. Since then I’ve had countless massages, facial treatments, and even haircuts through Groupon. Most of my experiences were wonderful and money well spent!
How Groupon Works
Companies looking to establish a customer base and get their name out there often join Groupon and post a coupon deal exclusive to Groupon only. This way, customers can purchase these specials and redeem them at their businesses. Many times customers who enjoyed the experience may come again, resulting in continued business.
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- Choices. The rapid success of Groupon has caused for plenty of spas to hop on the bandwagon and host deals through this platform. I have plenty of spas in my surrounding area participating on Groupon, but every city is different.
- Additional savings. Downloading the Groupon app on my phone and turning on the app notifications has also allowed me to get deeper savings. Groupon often has coupon codes for local deals–I’ve found some as much as 25% off! Continue reading to see the Top 5 spa deals I’ve ever gotten through Groupon.
- Bogos. Some Groupon deals may include a voucher for more than 1 service, with deeper savings. I’ve previously purchased one Groupon that included a massage and facial. There are others that may have a total of 3 massages for one price. This is a very competitive move for spas to try and earn your returning business!
Unfortunately, not everyone has a pleasurable experience. Not every Groupon guarantees your satisfaction, so it is important for you as the consumer to make an educated purchase! Here are some of my heaviest concerns:
- Negligent spa therapists. A lot of owners may make their own decision to join Groupon, and their therapists may not always support this choice. I’ve had a few unfortunate spa experiences where I didn’t feel like my therapist provided the best service, whether it was the quality of the treatment or simply just customer service. Some therapists may also look at you differently for being a Groupon customer–unfortunately, therapists can be a mixed bag.
- Messy scheduling. Due to heavy incoming clientele, some spas can be overwhelmed from back-to-back appointments. I’ve had times where I was waiting for almost an hour after my scheduled appointment time, despite arriving 15 minutes early. One time, I showed up and was told that I wasn’t even on the schedule despite making an appointment with them over the phone several days prior to!
- A rushed service. Purchased a 60-minute facial? You might wind up getting only 50 minutes. From my experience, some spas and salons often underestimate the marketing power of Groupon and don’t allow time in-between clients to clean up and prepare for the next client. Unfortunately, some therapists may cut your service time in order to prevent falling behind the service for the rest of the day.
Despite the cons, Groupon is without a doubt a great way to try searching for a new therapist or technician without committing to a full price. I’ve scored some excellent deals and savings through Groupon. Read below to see my Top 5!
The Top 5 Best Spa Deals I’ve Purchased
- 2-hour Couple’s Massage with Drinks and Chocolates
- Regular Price: $460.00 (according to Groupon)
- Groupon Price: $175.00
- Coupon code of 20% off ($43.75 additional savings)
- Total Savings: $328.75
- Purchase Total: $131.25
- 90-Minute Couple’s Massage with Champagne and Chocolates
- Regular Price: $230.00 (according to Groupon)
- Groupon Price: $115.00
- Coupon code of 25% off ($28.75 additional savings)
- Total Savings: $143.75
- Purchase Total: $86.25
- 90-minute Swedish Massage
- Regular Price: $90.00 (according to Groupon)
- Groupon Price: $45.00
- Coupon code of 20% off ($9.00 additional savings)
- Total Savings: $54.00
- Purchase Total: $36.00
- Haircut, Shampoo, Blow-Dry and Style
- Regular Price: $35 (according to Groupon)
- Groupon Price: $15.00
- Coupon code of 20% off ($3.00 additional savings)
- Total Savings: $23.00
- Purchase Total: $12.00
- Haircut, Shampoo, Blow-Dry and Style
- Regular Price: $50 (according to Groupon)
- Groupon Price: $17.00
- Coupon code of 20% off ($3.40 additional savings)
- Total Savings: $36.40
- Purchase Total: $13.60
Tips for a Great Groupon Spa Experience
- Tip generously. As a previous spa therapist, I understand what it feels like to work very hard for little pay. I’ve ran deals at my spa in the past, and I have to admit that even though I agreed to accepting Groupons on my own free will, it still is a lot of hard work. Spa therapists usually get paid through a percentage-based commission of each treatment, so you can imagine that with savings so big, it comes out of their pocket in hopes of earning your customer loyalty. When I use a Groupon, I generally tip anywhere between $20-$60 per therapist because I understand the hard work behind the treatment. Doing massages back-to-back can be very exhausting, put yourself in their shoes!
- Plan ahead of time. Although plenty of spas accept walk-in appointments, you can expect for spas accepting Groupons to have high-volume foot traffic during the Groupon redemption period. As a courtesy to them–and to assure that you are seen on-time and not waiting for longer than necessary–call ahead of time and schedule an appointment a few days to weeks out.
- Check ratings and read reviews before buying. Below each Groupon deal is a section for customer reviews, along with a 5-star rating scale. Be leery of anything under 3-stars, as sometimes some spas and technicians may fall short of expectation.
I’ve had a few questionable experiences through Groupon, but I’ve also found many great therapists and technicians who I have returned to and paid full price for even after claiming my Groupon deal. The savings are great, but the most valuable thing I can find through a Groupon deal is a therapist who does a great job. If you haven’t tried Groupon out yet, use my Groupon link and use the coupon code “FIRST” at checkout to get 25% off your first Groupon purchase!
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