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How Much Does a Massage Cost?

massage therapyThe cost of a massage depends on the type of massage, length of massage, and the massage therapist’s rates

If you see massage therapy spas in your region, you might be wondering how much it costs to get a massage. The answer depends on a number of factors, such as what kind of massage you are getting, the length of the massage, and the spa’s rates. Rates may also vary according to the type of spa you are visiting. More luxurious spas and destination resort spas will probably charge more than the franchise spas. The information below gives you a “ballpark idea” of the price ranges you might find.

Chair massages
Have you ever seen a chair massage booth set up in public location, such as an airport or shopping mall? In a chair massage, the therapist has you sit in a special massage chair, and massages your neck, shoulders, and upper back. This type of massage is usually very affordable. Many chair massage therapists may charge $1 per minute (or slightly more) and offer the massages in 15-minute increments. As you are calculating the total, be sure to add a 15 to 20 percent tip for your massage therapist. All told, for just about  $20, you could enjoy a relaxing 15-minute chair massage, which might be just enough to take the stress out of your day.

Massages at a Spa Chain
Massage franchises are becoming more common in cities and towns throughout the country. Franchises such as Massage Envy, Elements Therapeutic Massage, and Hand & Stone Massage and Facial Spa offer rates that are competitive with one another. Their rates may range from $50 for a 50-minute first-time introductory massage to over $100 or $150 for longer or more complicated massages, such as hot stone massages. Also remember to budget extra money to tip your therapist. The suggested amount for a tip is 15 to 20 percent of the cost of the massage.

Most spa franchises offer monthly memberships that offer better rates if you pay a monthly fee. With any membership agreement, be careful to read what you are signing so that you are aware of all the costs you will owe, as well as what services you will receive for your money.

Massages at a Luxury Resort or Hotel
Luxury resorts and high-end hotels are sometimes travel destinations for people who want a relaxing vacation. Massages at these resorts often start at $100 or $150 for a 50-minute massage. Rates for an 80-minute massage may start at $200 or $250. Depending on add-ons and the complexity of the massage, these rates can be higher. Some resorts include a tip for your therapist in your bill. Check your bill, and if a tip was not included, then remember to tip your massage therapist at the suggested rate of 15 to 20 percent.

In addition to offering massages, most spas also offer a range of other treatments, such as manicures, pedicures, and facials. Some luxury spas even include hair treatments, baths and body wraps, anti-aging treatments, and other beauty services.

Massages at a Private Practice
The rates of private massage therapists vary. Sometimes this can be a more cost-effective alternative to the spas, since private practitioners typically have less overhead, and can charge lower rates to their clients. Other times, private practitioners may charge more, depending on the demand for their services, their level of experience, and the services they offer.

Massages at Massage Training Schools
One option for a more budget-friendly massage is to find out whether there are any massage schools in your area. Sometimes these schools will hold clinics that are open to the public, in which students will provide massages as part of their training. Because the students are still in training, the rates they charge are much lower than the spa rates.

We hope this article has been helpful in understanding the range of rates that are typical in the field of massage therapy. If you are considering getting a massage, be sure to do your research first, so that you know how much you are paying, what kind of massage you will be receiving, and the experience level of the massage therapist. Also, always be sure to talk to the massage therapist first, to explain what you are hoping to achieve with your massage. Taking these steps will help to ensure that you have a positive experience.

This article was provided by the Harris School of  Business. The Harris School provides massage therapy training as well as a number of other career-focused training programs. If you are interested in learning about this field, visit our program page, or fill out our simple online form.