When it comes to booking something online, be it a dinner reservation at a restaurant or a hair appointment at a salon, it has always been a hassle.
One would have to scour the Internet, search and compare reviews online, then visit the individual websites to find the specific rates and services, before proceeding to call to place a booking.
After all this hassle, the booking may not even be confirmed due to unavailability.
This is why booking apps has been a huge lifesaver, as they create a seamless and convenient way for consumers to book various appointments with just a few taps.
There are a few fitness, beauty and wellness apps in Singapore, so Vulcan Post has went on to compare three of such platforms to check out what each has to offer.
Just last month, Vulcan Post wrote about the comeback of Vaniday.
Despite an unfortunate exit, Vaniday has been resurrected with a brand new management and direction.
It has since been revamped as a “one-stop beauty and wellness portal”, and has expanded its merchant pool to include gyms, chiropractic services, acupuncture therapy and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM).
Since Vaniday’s soft launch in February, it has onboarded a total of 1,000 merchants though its CEO has expressed ambitions to triple the merchant base to 3,000 by next year.
While the list of merchants for its beauty-related services are rather extensive, the options for new service additions like chiropractor (four merchants), gyms (five merchants) and TCM (two merchants) are rather limited.
Regardless, it stays true to its vision of being a “one-stop” portal. Beyond offering booking services, Vaniday also serves as an e-marketplace for beauty and wellness products (a quick check on the app showed that it’s selling Korean skincare from brands like Nature Republic and Innisfree) and offers a digital beauty and lifestyle magazine called VaniZine.
What’s also great about it is that Vaniday has revamped its loyalty programme. Customers who are loyal to their favourite salons and brands get to enjoy perks like increased cashback.
On top of that, Vaniday pushes out promotions from time to time so users get to enjoy further discounts. Some services also offer cheaper prices for first-time trial users so it’s worth going for different trial services at different salons for more savings.
Interestingly, it is the reverse for fitness app ClassPass (compared to Vaniday).
Last month, it announced that users can now book “beauty and wellness sessions” on its platform.
Due to COVID-19, ClassPass has branched out to offer online classes, which is conducted via live-streaming at lower credits than physical classes. This is a great option for users who prefers the convenience of working out in their homes, and are willing to forego on-site guidance from the trainers.
Its all-new wellness services are broken down into different categories: massage, facial, cryotherapy (the use of low temperatures in medical therapy) and sauna.
There is also a standalone online language course (available in one-month and three-month options) that sits under the Wellness tab.
On the other hand, its beauty services include manicure and pedicure, blowout, lashes, hair cut and brows.
Although ClassPass has expanded its suite of services, ClassPass is primarily a fitness booking app — it has an overwhelming number of partners in this area (381 to be exact) as compared to wellness (68 partners) and beauty (10 partners).
Its fitness services is also wide-ranging, covering from outdoors, yoga, pilates, HIIT, cycling, barre to gym studios. Class packages are also available, so you can stock up on classes at your favourite studios at a discount.
Another great thing about the ClassPass app is its interface. It’s really easy to navigate and users can filter their search according to dates, time, number of credits and amenities.
It’s worthy to note that ClassPass works based on a subscription model. Users can choose from four different plans to cater to different frequencies of usage:
- 8 credits for $19/month
- 25 credits for $59/month
- 45 credits for $99/month
- 85 credits for $185/month
- 150 credits for $315/month
This means that one credit can cost between $2.10 and $2.37, depending on which plan you opt for.
To put things in perspective, a quick check on the app showed that the lowest credits for a yoga class is 4 credits, a massage is 25 credits, while an express manicure is 5 credits.
Do note that ClassPass offers a free seven-day trial for new members.
There’s also another player called Mindbody that hails from the United States.
Founded in 2001, Mindbody brands itself as a cloud-based business management software. A quick query to the company revealed that it launched in Singapore in 2005.
According to its website, Mindbody said that it helps connect the world to wellness. Its software has linked “hundreds of thousands of passionate health, wellness, and beauty professionals to the millions of clients they serve.”
A search on its website revealed that it has partnered over 100 fitness and wellness studios and wellness, as well as 13 beauty businesses.
It has 20 fitness categories, including yoga, circuit training, boxing, pole fitness, tai chi and rock climbing.
On the other hand, it has 15 wellness categories including massage, acupuncture, nutrition, chiropractor, prenatal, reflexology, water therapy and body treatments.
Lastly, it has eight beauty categories including hair salon, face treatments, nails, hair removal, makeup/lashes/brows, med spa, tanning and even tattoo/piercing.
Each search on Mindbody can be filtered according to the class, studio or instructor, as well as fitness type, distance and ratings.
Mindbody also works on a flexible pricing system — you can choose to pay for a single session, class pack, or unlimited options.
You can also scour for cheap classes under the Deals section. There are $5 classes for kids yoga and a $10 prenatal yoga trial class.
This Trend Won’t Die Anytime Soon
The rise of fitness, beauty and wellness apps in Singapore is clear to see.
The COVID-19 pandemic has propelled a health trend, as many consumers start taking serious stock of their wellness.
As COVID-19 also accelerated the pace of tech trends, many fitness studios and beauty salons are taking their businesses online which have helped brought about the rise of such booking apps.
Mindbody CEO for one, is benefiting from this trend as it enjoys a massive demand surge in its business as people continue to stay home due to COVID-19.
Even after this pandemic is over, such apps will continue to see increased demand because like what food delivery and ride-hailing apps have proven, Singaporeans are willing to pay for convenience — and that’s exactly what these apps offer.
Featured Image Credit: Vaniday / ClassPass / Mindbody