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Getting Fit With ClassPass!

One of my top priorities going into 2018 is checking back in with my health and fitness.

As you may or may not know, 2017 has been a “bad” year in terms of my fitness; I left my job at the gym earlier last year and got an office job which has drastically changed my lifestyle from active to semi-active and putting on a few pounds. I couldn’t change my lifestyle from having the convenience of the gym right after I get work to having to make the effort and find the motivation to actually go down to the gym. 

A few years ago, I heard of ClassPass for a bit and I recalled checking them out but quickly exited the site because there weren’t many studios available on the service. I haven’t thought about ClassPass since a few months ago when I saw an Instagram ad for ClassPass and I was drawn in by their wonderful Instagram account. 

So, what is ClassPass? In short, ClassPass is essentially an “all-in-one” gym membership to your cities hottest studios and gyms. ClassPass acts as a gym membership to any gyms and studios that are partnered with ClassPass – yes, this includes worldwide locations where ClassPass operates – say goodbye to vacation weight!

ClassPass
ClassPass.com

I originally signed up for the $19 for two weeks promo and took my first Barre class shortly after. After raving about how awesome this service can potentially be, I got Dan to sign up for the promo as well, and together we took another Barre class and a kickboxing class. I ended up enjoying the service so much, I chose subscribed to their $55/month plan which is slightly more expensive than traditional gym memberships around town, but significantly cheaper than niche studios.

I absolutely love ClassPass because it benefitted me in so many ways. I’m more motivated to work out because I see all these fun classes available to me at the tip of my fingertips and no longer dread my boring weights routine. ClassPass has definitely helped shaped my fitness routine, thus getting me out the door and much more active than I previously was when I only had a gym membership. It also helped that I’m also cheap enough to not pay the $15 cancellation fee which “forces” me to commit to the class.

It’s also rad that ClassPass offers “gym time” which is exactly what it sounds like – gym time. When I miss my weights and want a break from classes, I’m free to walk into Steve Nash without paying for their ridiculous drop in fees or get a membership there. 

However, it’s not to say that ClassPass is perfect. Yes, it helped me tremendously in getting active again and getting back into a fitness routine, but the policies tire you out. 

After my initial hype and love for ClassPass died down, I started to see some flaws. The cancellation policy was a hit or miss – it’d help me stay committed to the class and keeping me fit, but it also felt like I was being “forced” to attend class or otherwise, I’d be penalized. There were nights when I didn’t want to do class anymore so I was stuck in the dilemma of forgoing $15 because it was a late cancellation (need to cancel 12 hours before class started) or stick it out and go attend class? I wish that ClassPass would offer a more realistic time frame to cancel with penalties – like serious, life happens within 12 hours! I wish they offered anywhere between 6 to 8 hours cancellation time frame instead of 12.

ClassPass Cities
List of where ClassPass operates.

To prevent users from cheating those expensive niche studios, ClassPass obviously puts a limit on how many times you can visit a studio per month. After visiting my favourite barre studio twice already, I either had to use more credits to take a class or my ClassPass plan or buy a membership at that barre studio (which I ended up doing). So, I ventured off to different barre studios throughout town because out of all the classes I’ve done, I enjoyed Barre the most. 

I feel I should also warn you about their cancellation process. Dan had a horrible experience cancelling his trial pass and ended up paying for another month subscription he didn’t want. To cancel the trial, you need at least three days notice and you must email or call in – there’s no self-cancel button on their app or website (seriously, what’s up with that? It’s 2018!). That being said, for anyone who is renewing after the trial, watch out for which plan you choose because ClassPass will automatically select their highest plan as the default renewal plan. 

However, despite the strict policies, I love ClassPass for what it is. It’s a great fun way to stay active and push yourself out of your comfort zone and try a new activity! I remember I used to be afraid of classes because I thought everyone would laugh at me because I didn’t know what I was doing but all the classes I’ve attended were fantastic! The instructors were helpful and welcoming, I was pushed beyond my limits, and I met amazing people on ClassPass doing the class for the first time. The idea of being the newest one in class went away. 

ClassPass is for someone who wants it all… a little bit of gym and a few classes. It’s for someone that’s has a somewhat regular routine unless you want to pay $15 for everytime life throws something at you. It’s for those who want to try something new on a regular basis. It’s for those who need help getting into an active routine and those who enjoy meeting new people. 

TIP: If you’re taking a class with a friend, book the class at least 48 hours in advance in case there’s only one spot left that you or your friend booked. This allows you to cancel the reservation without any penalties and find another class that has the available spots for you and your friend(s). This happened to Dan and I once when he took the last spot in a Barre class but was too late to cancel so we went anyways and I paid the drop in fee at that studio.

I wouldn’t recommend ClassPass if your life doesn’t consist of some sort of regular routine, and someone that enjoys one or two fitness activities. Trust me, you’ll hit your monthly limitation if you’re thinking of using ClassPass as a “cheaper” alternative to a studio.Have you given ClassPass a shot yet? Let me know!

*This post was not sponsored by ClassPass; October Rain or myself is not affiliated with ClassPass in any way. My ClassPass subscription is paid by myself and all opinions here are unbiased. ClassPass has no influence over this post. 

Business Review: Zenni Optical

I think everyone can agree that having an impaired eyesight can add up with purchases of contacts or glasses. I use both contacts and glasses and there are times when I look at glasses and think, geezus, where would I ever find $600 to fork out for just one pair of glasses? And God forbid I break those!

In comes Zenni Opticals, an online glasses store. Zenni Optical offers affordable eyewear for kids, women and men, and has frames starting as low as $6.95!

I decided to order the Blue Acetate-Rim Frame #445816 because I wanted a pair of blue glasses and the frame was only $30. The basic lens were free but I also ended up paying about $5 for standard anti-reflecting coating and shipping to Canada ($10).

Zenni Optical took 1.5 weeks or so to produce the glasses and a few days to arrive to my doorstep. In all, it took about two weeks for me to receive these pair of glasses.

To be honest, I find it hard to believe these frames were only $30! The quality of the frames are up to par and I’ve thrown them into my bag without a protective case and it still survived at the end of the day. In addition, because I opted for the basic free lens, I was surprised at how strong they are – in my bag filled with keys, sharp books, etc. I’m surprised the lens aren’t damaged or scratched.

Now, I’m not sure if it’s the pair of glasses I chose, but the downside of an online store is obviously the lack of physical testing. Zenni Optical allows you to upload a photo to see roughly how you would look with the pair. When I wore these pair of glasses, there was no support around the bridge area so the glasses would always slide down my nose and it’s extremely frustrating… especially in the summer time! I ended up getting it fixed in person in a local optical store but it still didn’t fix the problem.

The glasses came with a protective case and a cleaning cloth.

All in all, Zenni Optical provides quality frames in a cheap price. They have great stock of frames available in wide ranges of colours and styles. They took two weeks to complete my order and ship to Canada. I haven’t had any problems with the ordering or billing so I haven’t touched based with their customer service but their policies and customer service seems to be reasonable.

Long gone are my days forking out hundreds and hundreds of dollars for a pair of glasses. Whenever I’m in the mood to switch up my frames, Zenni Optical is one the first places I check for frames.

For anyone skeptical about the quality of online frames because of their prices, definitely give Zenni Optical a try! I’m all about being frugal without compromising styles and quality so Zenni Optical meets me halfway.

*Disclaimer: This post was not sponsored by Zenni Optical. I am in no way affiliated with the company nor does this blog represents Zenni. Product(s) shown here were purchased with my own money.

Buy/Rent/Sell Your Textbooks with Bookmob.ca

Selling textbooks can be a chore. I hate meeting up with people because they’re all over the city and my schedule is no longer flexible to meet up in the afternoon or morning. And if I have an available time slot, the buyer is busy.

I don’t keep my textbooks. It’s a waste of space in my home and an eyesore too. But, being a student, I do want some pocket money back from the books I purchased. Rather than using the traditional Facebook groups and Craigslist to sell them, I decided to use Bookmob to sell my textbooks.

Why? Because they’re the highest paying buyback program in Canada, with free shipping, fast payouts and they buy your books instantly! Instead of letting them collect dust in my room, I chose to get some money back from my books!

It took only 4 days for my textbooks to reach (I shipped it out on the 18th but I made my buyback on the 17th). Bookmob pays for your expedited shipping to Ontario via Canada Post; you would need to buy your own packaging but they’re less than $5 in a Canada Post office.

Bookmob takes about 2-3 days to process your payment. You can select between Bookmob credit (highest payout; worth it if you use Bookmob to rent/buy textbooks as well), PayPal, or by check. I chose PayPal because it’s the fastest with no withdrawal fees as well.

Proof of Bookmob PayPal payout

Within three days of receiving my package, Bookmob sent me my quoted amount of $96.24! While using Bookmob to sell my books, I was able to go about my days completing much more important tasks instead of constantly advertising and traveling the city to sell my books.

Bookmob is not only a buyback service, but you may also choose to buy or rent your textbooks with Bookmob, saving about $500/year!

*Disclaimer: This business review is not sponsored by Bookmob nor is this blog affiliated with Bookmob. All opinions and experiences are my honest opinion and any additional resources required were paid with my money.

Business Review: Blanche McDonald Hair Services (Q&A Hair Salon)

If you don’t know, I like to be thrifty without sacrificing a whole lot. Since growing out my pixie cut, I felt self conscious with my hair because it had no style and it was literally just a shapeless blob of hair. I also had a tail growing which made me the most self conscious.

I knew one thing: I’m not going back to the salon that gave me my pixie cut, and all the nearby salons were too expensive (we’re talking starting $30-$50 for a women’s cut)!I like student services because they’re affordable and they actually do a great job! My last experience with a student salon was with VCC but I didn’t feel like going back to VCC. I felt that Blanche McDonald would be a better choice since it’s specialized in make-up/hair.

I paid $16 for my hair cut… yes, only $16 for a good hair cut compared to all the salons!

Upon arrival at Q&A Hair Salon, I was surprised at how spacious and lovely the place was! The staff greeted me instantly and I had no problem finding the salon. I was paired up with Raina, a lovely stylist with a great humour. I normally don’t enjoy small talk but she was just sooo wonderful! I wish a successful career as a stylist when she heads back to Mexico!

Anyways, I explained to Raina what I wanted and showed her some photos. Unlike my experience with VCC, I was able to communicate with her effortlessly. There was no miscommunications whatsoever. Before the students start, they must complete their worksheets and have the instructor sign off and you also have to sign off acknowledging that they’re students.

The entire process was refreshing. The instructor checked up on us frequently and even made suggestions on how to cut may hair!

It took longer than I expected but that’s the thing about student salons – you pay a good price, good service but you need to allocate a few hours of your day. It’s not like those quick cut and go sort of thing.

(And we all know how much time I have when I choose to procrastinate!)

I think the process took about two hours or so. There’s a little bit of touch up here and there but nonetheless, it was a great experience with the Blanche McDonald hair services!

The prices are comparable to VCC but the quality isn’t! This is soooo much better (sorry!) For a list of their prices, click here, however, I think they updated their prices without updating their website and the new prices are about a dollar or so more.

Overall, I’m probably going to come back for my highlights! I recommending this place to all my friends now instead of VCC.

Location: 410 Robson Street, Vancouver, BC
(Inside CurliQue Beauty Boutique)
Price: 5/5
Quality: 5/5
Service: 5/5
Highly recommended you try at least one of their services!

* Disclaimer: This post is not sponsored by Blanche McDonald school. Everything here is my opinion and paid with my own money. This blog is not affiliated with Blanche McDonald in any way.

Business Review: VisionPros.ca

VisionPros.ca home page.

VisionPros.ca is an online Canadian store that supplies customers a wide range of available contact lenses. They ship throughout Canada and the United States.

Being a (broke) student, I wanted to save money on my contact lenses. I know wearing my glasses will save me money but after wearing them for about 2 months, I’ve missed my contact lenses soooo much! I searched online and came across VisionPros. I was a bit skeptical at first because even though I’ve found it through Google, I couldn’t believe how cheap the prices per box were! They have thousands of Facebook fans and an updated Facebook fan page but I still needed to read actual reviews from customers. Unfortunately, I didn’t come across any reviews but for every contact lenses they were selling, at the end of the page were consumer reviews and everyone of them were positive. I try to stay away from reviews that are on the actual website but seeing that those were the only reviews (and on Facebook) from real customers, I decided to put my trust in VisionPros.

Which is why I’m writing this review. If you were in my position, stumbling across VisionPros but being a bit skeptical at first, I’ll present to you the first review for this business!

I originally only purchased two boxes of my contact lenses because, like I’ve stated, I was a bit skeptical at first. Despite buying only two boxes, they were still cheaper than what I would’ve gotten if I went to my optical store. However, about 99% of their contact lenses has a “wholesale” price, I guess you can call it; if you purchase 4 boxes, or even 6 boxes (depending on daily/weekly/monthly lenses), the prices will be cheaper per box.

I remember placing my order on Thursday, getting my ordered processed and shipped out on Friday and it arrived on Monday. Keep in mind that my shipping was only one day because I live in Vancouver and they ship out from Surrey, BC.

Nice packaging!

What the box contained: my contact lenses, discount code, lens container and receipt.

VisionPros offers a 7% discount code on their Facebook page from time to time and offers free shipping for orders over $99.

They also have a great exchange/refund policy! If they messed up on your order or your lenses were defective upon arrival, VisionPros will gladly exchange/refund you with free shipping both ways. They also have a 110% price guarantee but I doubt there’s any other business that sells their lenses as cheap as VisionPros. I’ve even compared with Clearly Contacts and discovered that VisionPros saves me $5-10 on my order. And of course, who wouldn’t want to save a few bucks and reinvest it in a nice Starbucks latte?

Also, keep in mind that there’s also a small fee for handling warranty (I believe? I forgot). Many online contact lenses store has a handling fee including Clearly Contacts. In my experience, the cost of my lenses plus shipping and handling fees still came cheaper than Clearly Contacts.

In conclusion, I’m glad that I gave VisionPros a try instead of running to my local optical store. VisionPros offers discounts on already low priced contact lenses, extremely fast shipping and processing, and great exchange/refund policies.

 Business Name: VisionPros
Website: VisionPros.ca
Telephone:1-888-404-7317
Address: 19138 26th Avenue,
Surrey, BC, V3S 3V7

*Disclaimer: This is not a paid review. I am in no way affiliated with VisionPros.ca; my experience with VisionPros has been provided with my own money.

Business Review: Laser Era Clinic and Spa (Vancouver, BC)

Hello!

Guess who finally used their Groupon?! Me! I purchased a $29 Groupon for a massage at a spa (Laser Ear Clinic and Spa) just up the street from me. I never gotten around to use it until a notification told me it was expiring in about a week or so, so I quickly booked an appointment.


Upon my arrival, my first impression of the place was.. ‘Wow, this “spa” is ridiculously small!‘ and the outside wasn’t the prettiest – it was a bit old, run down and the non-opening blinds made this spa really unwelcoming.

When I entered, I wasn’t greeted or anything since the owner was scheduling another client for her last laser treatment. I stepped aside and allowed the two of them to do their thing. I tried my best not to eavesdrop but the owner was extremely loud and even rude. In my opinion, it sounded like she was yelling at the client for choosing unreasonable dates and time. I stood there for about ten minutes before the owner and the receptionist acknowledged me and made me fill out a paper.

After all that, the young receptionist led me to one of the three rooms in the back and told me to undress, lie down and cover myself with the towel. After taking off my purse, I realized the receptionist never even pointed where I can hang my items… eventually I found a hook in the room and hung all my stuff and lied down to wait for the masseuse.

The masseuse came in after about 5 minutes or so. I found out the masseuse and the receptionist is the same person which made me wonder if this young woman was even qualified to give massages. Nonetheless, she decided to get to work.

I tried to relax… trust me, I did. But failed.

Outside, I heard the owner yelling at a teenager for a question about a promo price her mom told her about. From what I heard, the teenager was leaving after getting her answer but the owner kept on yelling at her, telling her the price she asked for was unheard of and should go back to her mother. I just laid there, cursing at the owner in my head for causing unnecessary noise.

A few minutes later, I heard the door open again and a man came in – either the husband of the owner or a really close relative/friend. Either way, the owner spent about 20-30 minutes complaining about customers and the mistakes the receptionist made. It was extremely horrible as I can hear everything… everything she was ranting about. Extremely unprofessional and non-relaxing.

Aside from the owner’s ranting, a machine was making a horrible humming and beeping noise for a while too. I wanted a quiet atmosphere.

The massage itself was okay. To be honest, it didn’t ‘wow’ me at all. I didn’t feel relax given the noise outside and the massage wasn’t undoing any knots… put it this way, I could have saved myself $29 and asked my boyfriend for a massage. By the time the massage was over, I just felt really oily. The messeuse kept on pushing my bangs and hair out of my face when she was doing a facial massage which made me look like I didn’t wash my hair for months when I left the building. Because of the poor oily hair situation (they should have given me a clip to hold my bangs!) I had to go home and shower before heading out again.

All in all, I wouldn’t recommend this place for as a spa; for laser work, I’m not sure but given the poor massages and poor customer service, I wouldn’t trust the laser works this place does.

Customer service: 2/5
Quality: 1/5
Cost: 3/5 (Based on regular price, this place was pretty cheap)
Would I come back?: No
Would I recommend this place?: No
Business name: Laser Era Clinic and Spa
Location: 6225 Victoria Drive, Vancouver, BC (they also have a location out in Surrey)
Phone number: 604-327-2151
Website: Here

*Disclaimer: This is not a paid review. The opinions
written above is based on my own experiences provided by my own money. I
am no way affiliated with the company in any way.