Michigan YMCAs Join to Offer Traveling Membership | Athletic Business

Michigan YMCAs Join to Offer Traveling Membership

On Monday, the YMCA announced that local club associations in Michigan will be extending benefits to members of more than 60 independent locations in the state. As of March 1, any member of a Michigan YMCA will have access to any of the participating locations, free of additional charge as part of a new statewide reciprocity agreement.

Fran Talsma, executive director of the State Alliance of Michigan YMCAs, told the Detroit Free Press, “The spirit behind the reciprocity program is founded in the belief that the Y is one movement and that we want to encourage members to utilize the Y as often as they can to meet their health and wellness goals.”

The Michigan YMCA associations are the latest to join the statewide membership movement, following states such as Indiana, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio and Pennsylvania. In some reciprocity programs, the “My Y Is Every Y” benefits cross state borders.

For example, a membership at the YMCA of Greater Twin Cities provides access to participating Minnesota locations as well as those in Hudson, Wis. The Wisconsin state reciprocity agreement includes most locations in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, while an alliance in the New England states gives open access to members from Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont.

This statewide, “My Y Is Every Y” membership program is a step beyond the YMCA’s longstanding traveling membership policy, “Always Welcome at the Y.” While YMCA members might be accustomed to the idea that they will be welcomed at a location other than their home club, traveling often required calling ahead to check the policy held by a local YMCA, which might offer the traveling member benefits at a discounted rate, or for a limited number of days.

The “My Y Is Every Y” movement takes some of the guess work out of the equation for members traveling in-state.

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