Cycling Apps

TrainerRoad Raises Their Prices. Again!

Update July 26th, 2019: TrainerRoad is rolling back their prices temporarily to allow users to lock-in the old prices. So if you canceled your TrainerRoad membership or interested in TrainerRoad, you have until August 2nd to lock-in your membership at $15/month or $129/year.

In an unexpected move, today, TrainerRoad quietly raised their prices to $19.95/month or $189.95 per year if billed annually. This is only 9 months after they increased their prices from $12/month or $99/year to $15/month or $129/year.

The increase in price will be used to hire more people, do more research, and build more features to make you faster. We’ve really hit a stride as a company lately with releasing our Performance Analytics, calendar, a new desktop app (mobile coming soon) and outside workouts on Garmins (and Wahoos coming soon).

Nate Pearson, CEO and Founder of TrainerRoad

TrainerRoad is the second most popular indoor cycling application just trailing Zwift.

This price increase came at a shock because there was no announcement, communication, or any type of “lock-in” period for users who forgot to renew for any reason or cancel during the summer months. Last year, they announced the price increase a few weeks ahead of time to give users the ability to signup and lock-in their subscription at the old price.

However, according to Nate, “We didn’t decide to announce it with a “lock-in” period this time because we thought that it was doing a disservice to our other users who are supporting us and staying subscribed.”

Raising prices without notice is nothing new. Companies have been engaging in this age-old tactic for quite sometimes. Starbucks just last year quietly raised their prices by up to 20 cents without any heads up. Other ways companies do this is by giving you less without charging you more like in deodorant or chips – you never hear athletes complain as much about getting less deodorant though!

At $190 per year, this makes TrainerRoad the most expensive indoor cycling app in the market – not counting the Peloton.

Here is a look at some of the most popular cycling apps we have today:

  • Zwift: $15/month. Zwift doesn’t offer a discounted annual membership so the annual cost will come to $180.
  • The Sufferfest: $13/month or $99/year.
  • Peloton: Peloton digital subscription costs $19.49 or $39 if you have their bike or treadmill. However, I think the Peloton has a different type of clientele when compared to ones that uses TrainerRoad.

However, unlike most cycling apps out there, TrainerRoad is the only one that offers cycling, running, swimming training plans along with an analytics tool and the ability to schedule and plan out your season. When looking at such tools, TrainingPeaks and Today’s Plan come to mind and this is what these tools cost:

  • TrainingPeaks: $19.95/month or $119/year
  • Today’s Plan: $17/month or $145/year

The above prices are only to use their scheduling and analytics tools and don’t include training plans. Many athletes including myself, use one of the above tools in addition to TrainerRoad. TrainerRoad is hoping athletes will find the analytics tools and training plans sufficient and drop subscription to other tools.

The price increase will only impact new users. If you are currently subscribed, there is nothing to worry about as long as you don’t cancel your membership.

As we head into the 2019-20 indoor training season, it will be interesting to see what type of impact this will have on TrainerRoad new subscribers. The indoor cycling industry is growing rapidly and more people are cycling indoors on their smart trainers. The days of $10/month subscription are over and I think $20/month is more in line with the current market.

As much as we hate paying more, raising prices from time to time is part of managing a business successfully. This allows them to put more money into development and staying competitive.

I expect to see Zwift raise their prices as well before the end of the year, and we are not sure what Wahoo will end up doing with the Sufferfest. But, regardless of how you justify or analyze the new pricing, at the end of the day, new customers will look at the monthly or annual membership price and compare to other indoor cycling apps and make a decision based on that.

For now, TrainerRoad might have the most expensive subscription but I doubt this will be the case toward the end of the year.

Thanks for reading!

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3 Comments

  • I deal with it like this: 🚮

    I found the 2018’s increase in price a hard to swallow pill; but it was very well communicated – kudos for that. But now? Uuhhh… no way I would ever come back and use TR again.

    The workout library is good, but the web has plenty of good workouts – using the own brain/mind can be sometimes helpful too. The plans are… well, not everyone can adapt to training load the same way and age & RL have huge effects on adaptation.

    IMO they are completely overshooting it now. But I think they’ll find enough ‚fans’ – in my experience TR users can be quite special – which will gladly swallow this new pricing pill. Peer pressure can be high.

    • Disclaimer (just for safety reasons 😉): This is only my opinion which is based on my point of view and/or experience.

  • $20 a month is at a point where I’d personally start looking at the free offerings. I use Zwift myself and last summer I kept my account active even though I only ended up using it a few times. This year they raised their prices so I decided I would not keep the service active during the warmer months. Canceled mid spring and likely wont look at bringing my account back online until Dec./Jan. Best case scenario is a significant portion of their user base take this action.