, pub-4167727599129474, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0

Active Advantage Review

I signed up with Active Advantage from in October, 2012. I was looking to save money on race registrations and was enticed by constantly seeing “Save up to $10 in processing fees on this event” when I registered for a race on The other features did not interest me but they may be of interest to you.

My Active Advantage Review

FREE Training Plans, pub-4167727599129474, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0

With the Active Advantage program you get free access to all of their training plans. This can be a good deal as plans range in price from $19.95 to $35.99. If you are just beginning to run, you could start out with the Couch-to-5K program ($19.95) and then progress to the Beginner 5K program ($24.99). If you are really dedicated you may even have time to move up to their Beginner 10K or Beginner Marathon program ($35.99). If you just did that you would save $80.97 and by the end of the year you would be able to finish a marathon. Not bad.

I tried the Beginner 5K program just to try one out. The plan is good and someone who is new to running would benefit form the structure of the program. It tells you what you need to do, when to do it and for how long.

I found actually using the program very clunky. Sometimes I would do a different activity then the plan called for and found it difficult and time consuming to log what I actually did. Entering my scheduled running activities was also clunky. To add value for their customers, should re-work the user interface for their training plans.

Race Registration Deals

With Active Advantage you also get deals when registering for activities. They wave processing fees when you register for a race or event that they handle. This can save you from $3.25 for a $25 5K registration up to $4.96 for a $55 Half-marathon. They say that you can save up to $10 per event so I am assuming the maximum processing fee is $10.

When I registered for several 5Ks with fees around $25 their registration page still said “save up to $10 on this event”. I never did figure out how to do that and they were never able to answer my questions about how to save this much on a $25 registration fee either.

You can search for activities that they handle but the results can be a challenge to navigate.

They also have Free Entry Deals. You need to keep an eye on this section of their website, as it changes often and they only offer a limited number of free entries. I think they had a limited number of free entries to Half at The Hamptons, but I had signed up in October. So much for saving money by registering early! Most deals seemed just a little too far away to be of interest to me.

I saved $5.00 on the registration fee for The New Bedford Half Marathon using one of their Event Coupons . These discounts typically are $10 or 10-15% off of the registration fee and you also save the processing fee. The processing fee for New Bedford was $4.16, so I saved a total of $9.16 on that race.

new bedford half, active advantage review

I’ve signed up for 13 races so far this year and seven were handled by My total savings so far are $32.47, including $5.00 off of the registration fee for New Bedford. Excluding the $5.00 my average savings per race is $3.92, or $27.47 total. I may sign up for a few more races that use this year but I probably won’t break even just on processing fee savings.

Savings on Gear and Travel

If you need stuff or just like to buy stuff you could save some money here. They offer discounts on Gear from major brands such as Adidas, XTERRA and Timex. They also have a link to a partner web site called ActiveGearUp. As far as I can tell, ActiveGearUp is run by LeftLane Sports and is a separate business.

As an Active Advantage member you are supposed to be able to save an additional 15% on their prices. I never compared their prices to any other web site’s prices so I can’t vouch for their pricing. For some reason you also have to re-log into ActiveGearUp when you link to it from or Active Advantage. To me, that seems a little clunky when compared to other B2C sites.

You can also save on Travel. I’m always looking for a good deal but these offers looked similar to AAA or my Alumni Membership discounts. Not a main reason to join Active Advantage, but it pulls together a lot of hospitality vendors onto one page for you. No airlines but they do have Enterprise Rent-A-Car.

Final Analysis

I typically look for races that interest me and getting a discount is a bonus. I never look at races just because they have a discount. If a race is beyond the distance I would normally travel for a given race distance, the discount may get me to consider the race. If I was a better shopper and spent more time on keeping an eye on the latest offers, I could probably save more. That is a normal strategy to draw more traffic to a site.

I don’t like that I have to log into and then search for the link to Active Advantage. Then I need to log into Active Advantage. If I go to GearUp I then have to log in again. This just seems antiquated to me.

The tools available to track my activity across the internet should allow to track me across their web sites and to partner web sites. One log on to bind them. Active Advantage should be on the menu bar, not a term I need to use Google to search for.

If you shopped their site for race fee discounts, used several training plans and utilized the discounts offered from their vendors you could probably save some money with the Active Advantage membership.

For me the savings have not been that significant and I found their website to be clunky to navigate. I’m still looking for the way to save $10 on a race registration and feel like I was mislead regarding this savings opportunity.

You should evaluate your shopping habits and race schedule before signing up. Not everyone will break even with Active Advantage; fewer still will get a true value from membership. LeftLane Sports is worth a look-see, though you will need to create an account to get beyond the front page.

Run well my Friends,


© 2013-2015 anagelin




9 responses to “Active Advantage Review”

  1. Liz @ I Heart Vegetables Avatar

    I used a training plan from Fitness magazine when I ran my first half last fall and it was SO helpful having all my training mapped out! I was a total newbie so it was super handy! These training plans sound great though!

  2. Army Amy Avatar

    I like that you did a full assessment. I thought for sure that you’d make your money back in saving on the fees for each race, but I guess that amount is so small that it really isn’t worth it. Too bad, though, it was so promising!

    1. imarunner2012 Avatar

      In a sense I feel it’s a bit of a gimmick They entice you with saving up to $10 per race but then can’t tell you how to do that.
      The other stuff is nice if you use them, but I don’t.
      Thanks for your comment!

  3. […] and Active Advantage Review […]

  4. Chuck Douros - Principal Writer for Runwritedig Avatar

    I wonder when runners get discounts on registration fees, does that cut into the amount being donated to the beneficiaries? It would seem so, but I don’t know. Thoughts?

    1. imarunner2012 Avatar

      That’s a good question. I ran the numbers for last year and I just about broke even. So Active isn’t really loosing any money.
      By having a paying membership they have a better product to sell to their advertisers, a captive audience. Those of us who pay to have access to all of the discounts probably go to their site more often and therefor give them more views which is what advertisers are looking for.
      So in my analysis, I think the races and charities get the same amount of money. Active makes up for the discounts as most people do not register for enough races to recoup membership costs and Active can charge more for ads. They have all the angles figured!

  5. […] I wrote several posts about my experience with ActiveAdvantage: My year with ActiveAdvantage, and ActiveAdvantage Review […]

  6. Al Smith Avatar
    Al Smith stinks! After giving my email address, and my mailing address, it would not accept my race(s) applications without my telephone number. Their chances of doing that are about the same as me running a 13 minute 5k.

    Funny, how after I left the websites without giving the phone number, and therefore not registering for the races, Active emailed me that my registrations had failed. NS! How easy it was for them to contact me without the phone number, and therefore it is unneeded. Even funnier was the fact that Active had the site blocked so I couldn’t even return an email to tell why I could not complete the registration.

    Active can kiss my plump backside before I’ll ever register for a race through them.

    1. Imarunner2012 Avatar

      When you register for a race through another company, they don’t ask for your phone number?
      It seems that every race I sign up for wants an emergency contact and phone number.
      I think Active has gotten a lot better over the past few years. I have never received a call from them, even though they have had my # for five years or so.

%d bloggers like this: