New Interclub offering at the Edmonton Squash Club for 2018/19
We are always trying to improve our programming at the ESC, and we have made a few changes to our Interclub offering to improve value and fun. Check out the summary of the adjustments below, or skip down to the full explanation.
2018/19 ESC Interclub Cliff Notes
This year we will be making a couple improvements to the Interclub offering.
- We will be providing each home team with the following at each game:
- 8 Gatorade or coconut waters to share with the away team
- 2 game balls
- 1 Pitcher of beer or equivalent non-alcoholic option post-game
- A $30 food credit to use at the club or to order from one of our food delivery partners
- The individual ESL add-on fee will be removed and replaced by a Team Fee of $1,500. For teams with the league minimum six players, the overall cost will be the same as last year, and for teams of seven or more, the cost will be lower. To give you an idea of the math, last year an ESL member would pay $245 over the course of the 7 month ESL season. Now if you have a team of 6 you will pay $250 for the season, $187.50 if you have a team of 8.
2018/19 ESC Interclub Changes: Long Version
Why Was There an Interclub Fee In the Past?
This year, we want to improve the cost and quality of our offerings. Top of mind is the Edmonton Squash Club member experience and enhancing your Interclub season this year.
In our year-end survey, one thing that stood out was a dissatisfaction with the overall cost for an Interclub membership. In particular, people did not feel they were getting value for the $35 ESL add-on fee. Last year we added a team booking option for the weekends to help with this, but ultimately that was not widely used.
No other club in Edmonton has this fee, so why do we have it? The short answer is that to offer a premium squash experience in Edmonton we needed that additional revenue from the add-on fee. Further, the bulk of the premium court times are effectively reserved for ESL players.
This year we have decided to try something different though to add value to our ESL memberships.
How Is This Changing This Season?
This season, we will eliminate the ESL-add on membership category and add-on fee, which means your monthly membership fee will remain the constant throughout the year. Alternatively, similar many adult sports teams like hockey, soccer ball hockey, baseball, and other team sports, we will institute a 1-time team fee of $1,500/team.
This fee is equivalent to a 6 person team paying the previous $35/month add-on fee. If you choose to have 7 or 8 people on your team then playing ESL will be cheaper this year. Member feedback told us the $35/month add-on fee charged at the individual level was not equitable as each ESL team has the same number of home games regardless of the number of players on the team.
What’s In It For You?
With the ESC member experience in mind and your role as host to our guests from other clubs, for EACH HOME game the Edmonton Squash Club will provide the home team with:
- Refreshments (8 Gatorade or coconut water) to distribute to the home and away players.
- Two new squash balls. Now you don’t have to worry about bringing or buying/splitting the cost of balls
- One pitcher of draught beer or non-alcoholic equivalent, ideally to share with the away team.
- $30 food credit to use with one of our delivery partners or for food made in our mini kitchen.
That’s a $90 value to the home team for each home game.
Why The Change?
- To provide more value to our members and differentiate ourselves from other clubs.
- To promote social interactions within the squash community
- In the not-so-distant past, there was a mandatory socializing component to the league which fostered a strong squash community. We really see this during our summer and fall leagues, where we have everyone hanging out, eating the provided pizza and getting to know each other while watching squash. Let promote this culture and create the environment for everyone.
- As host to our visiting teams, we hope you will share the food and beer as a goodwill gesture. Some teams may reciprocate, some may not. Regardless, we think this is a good way to ensure they’ve felt they are treated well at the club, doing our part to build a strong squash community at the ESC and across Edmonton.
- To provide consistent membership costs throughout the year.
That Sounds Like A Lot of Money Up Front. Are There Ways To Spread the Payment Out?
We will assist you in collecting the team fees.
- Teams can split up the team fee and have it applied to member’s accounts
- Your team members have the option to apply all at once or in 2 installments (November and February).
- You can pay via the pro shop with all the normal payment options at the club (cash, debit card, Visa or Master Card)
- If paying in two larger installments is a financial obstacle to joining the league, then we will make alternate arrangements on a case-by-case basis
If your whole team remits their full fee by November 1st, your team will receive a team lesson from either Jeff or Ibrahim (a $125 value) and you will be entered into a draw for a $100 Pro Shop Credit for that new racquet or shoes you have been looking at!!
Although we still require the revenue from the Team fee to operate financially, the sense of community that ESL teams bring is just as essential to sustain the club. We believe that having a large, vibrant player base across all skill levels sets us apart from playing squash in a multipurpose recreational facility, and we hope to continue to build the size of this community, and by extension our club, in the years to come.
Who are the “Delivery Partners” for the food you mentioned?
We surveyed people for some of their favourite ordering options in early August, and we plan to test a few of them out to see which ones would work best with Interclub. We will have the team captains fill out a form on our website prior to their game and have the front desk handle ordering and payment on your behalf. Extra quantities can be ordered on your behalf and can be paid for at the front desk or billed to your Membership account or divided amongst the team however you’d like.
Who are the current membership plans designed for?
Basic plan: casual players the chance to play squash at a price point similar to a general fitness membership at a gym with maximum 4 court bookings per month, but unlimited access to open drop-in times (this plan will not be available to new members after October 1, 2018, current basic members will be able to keep this membership)
Non-Prime Time plan: For casual and serious players alike who can play during off-peak hours and want a more affordable squash option.
Premium plan: for more serious players who like playing more than once a week and unlimited court bookings
ESL Premium Add-on(no longer offered): premium membership plus a $35/month fee. This was created because the bulk of the absolute best court times were effectively reserved for ESL players.
How did we determine our fee categories?
We originally came up with our club fees by weighing what other clubs charge and marrying that with our operating costs and the number of members we thought we might have. Unfortunately, that number started around $120 for everyone, and we decided that this price was both prohibitive to new players picking up the game, and also excessive during summer months where a significant fraction of the players might only come play once or twice a month.
Instead, three membership categories were created: a basic plan, which afforded casual players the chance to play squash at a price point similar to a general fitness membership at a gym, a premium membership for serious players who like playing more than once a week, and an ESL premium add-on to reflect that the bulk of the absolute best court times were effectively reserved for ESL players.