Going to a private pool is a nice break from the overcrowded public pools, but these pools require memberships. If you are a member bringing a guest or are the guest yourself, there are pool guest policies that you need to know and familiarize yourself with.
Guest policy rules vary; however, most pools abide by several general guidelines. On average, members can bring up to five guests per day. These guests must check in and pay a guest fee for pool access. Immediately family members do not count as guests, but extended family and friends do.
The preceding paragraph provides a basic overview of what pool guest policies are about, but it fails to capture the whole picture. Below, we will cover everything you need to know about pool guest policies.
What Defines a Pool Guest:
Many private pools and facilities require attendees to have a purchased membership to utilize the pool and all of its resources.
Pool guests are generally defined as residents or attendees of the pool who do not own a membership themselves but are accompanied by a paying member. Certain pools even distinguish between residential guests (guests who live in the area) and out-of-district guests (guests who are visiting from another location). These pools may charge different fees according to the status of each guest.
Pool guests are granted limited access to the pool facilities when they visit with a paying member. Paying members are allowed a certain number of guests, depending on their pool and membership status. These guests have to pay a fee and are subject to all the rules and regulations of the pool.
Number of Guests Members are Allowed:
The number of guests allowed for each member depends on the pool. The limit is 5 guests per day for many pools, although some pools allow up to 9 guests per day. Other private facilities are more restrictive, with some only allotting a certain number of guests for the whole season.
The amount of times per week (or month) that a single guest can attend the pool is contingent on the specific rules in place at the pool. For example, at the Woods of Parkview Pool in Georgia, a non-local guest can only attend the pool once a week (source). This means that if someone comes to the pool as a guest on Monday, they cannot be a guest for the rest of the week. This restriction applies to them even if they try to come with two different members on two separate days.
However, according to The Swimming Hole in Davidson, North Carolina, the guests may attend the pool as many times as a paying member accompanies them (source). Other pools have a set number of times that a guest is allowed to attend the pool. These average around 6-10 pool attendances for the summer.
Vertical family members, meaning parents and children, are generally not counted as one of the member’s guests. However, horizontal family members—siblings, cousins, or other extended families—count toward the guest number.
Babysitters, nannies, or other caretakers are not charged or counted as guests as long as they accompany the child whose family has a membership. However, it is the member’s responsibility to register the caretaker as such. Furthermore, the pool needs written consent that the babysitter will be present in the facility to watch the children. If the babysitter is in the facility, but the parents are there too, the babysitter will be counted as a guest and charged accordingly.
Guest Check In and Fees:
All guests who are attending the pool must check in at the front desk with the lifeguards. A guest cannot enter the pool without their accompanying member, and they must sign in upon arrival. The majority of pools and facilities require that the guest provide a valid photo ID. If the guest is under nine years of age, they must be accompanied by an adult 16 years or older at all times.
Once again, the guest fee is dependent on the individual pool. The average daily cost for a guest to use the pool ranges between $2 and $5. However, fancier facilities, such as the Mercedes Club, charge up to $100 for facility access, including the pool (source).
Luckily, most private pools are not as expensive as the Mercedes Club pool. As a result, guests can expect to pay no more than $10 a day to use the pool facilities.
Pool Rules that Guests Must Follow:
All guests attending a private pool are subject to the rules and regulations thereof. If any guest violates these rules, they may be kicked out of the pool and forfeit any future guest privileges.
Below is a general pool rule list, although it is not comprehensive and does not account for the individual regulations of each pool:
- No running, skipping, pushing, or fighting in the pool area.
- No swimming unless a lifeguard is on duty.
- No diving into the pool except at the designated diving areas.
- All members and guests must listen to and follow the lifeguards, if all guards blow their whistle, attendees must exit the pool immediately.
- Proper pool attire must be worn.
- Only one person at a time is allowed on the diving board.
- No dunking others in the pool.
- No sitting or standing on the shoulders of others in the pool.
- No horseplay or dangerous games (as determined by lifeguards).
If you would like a more detailed explanation of the rules enforced at community pools, click over to Swimming Pool Rules: A Comprehensive List w/ Descriptions.
If any guest fails to follow the pool rules, not only will they get kicked out, but the staff on duty may punish their accompanying member with pool restrictions. All accompanying members are responsible for their guest and ensuring that their guest is aware of, and can correctly follow, all rules and regulations set out by the pool.
Guests cannot enter the pool without their member, and they cannot stay in the pool after their member has left. They MUST leave with their member.
Can Guests Enjoy Other Amenities Besides the Pool?
Memberships to private pools can grant access to less crowded and more sanitary pools compared to public ones. However, these are not the only benefits. Certain memberships allow patrons access to a variety of other amenities as well. Two key examples of private pools that offer many other amenities to both members and guests are the Mercedes Club and the YMCA.
The Mercedes Club (briefly mentioned above) is a luxury health and fitness center. The Mercedes Club has an outdoor private resort-style pool to which all members have access. Although this is the main feature, the club possesses various other elaborate amenities that attendees can utilize through a paid membership.
These amenities include, but are not limited to:
- a fitness floor with cardiovascular and strength training equipment
- a group exercise studio with fitness classes and instructors
- a jacuzzi
- a sauna room
- an indoor lap pool
Getting a membership to the Mercedes Club provides unlimited access to all of these amenities. The cost for a membership is around $175 per month after a $300 initial payment.
Another popular facility known for its private pool and amenities is the YMCA. The YMCA, which stands for Young Men’s Christian Association, is a place with various sports and recreational amenities.
You can find a private pool at all YMCA locations. Most YMCAs have an indoor pool and an outdoor pool with waterslides and an outdoor splash pad. Swimming lessons are offered at all locations. Memberships to the YMCA also grant access to a wide variety of physical amenities, including:
- fitness centers
- indoor climbing walls
- outdoor trails
- racquetball courts
- rollerskating areas
The YMCA is considerably cheaper than the Mercedes club. Their initial fees are $50 for an adult or $95 for a family. Their monthly fees are $44 for an adult and $72 for a family (source).
Other Pool Amenities
Although many private pools are not as fancy as the YMCA or Mercedes club, several private pool memberships contain other amenities. Many pools, for example, have outdoor amenities, such as grills, that are available to reserve and use for cookouts.
Other pools have adjacent splash pads or spa areas that are available to use with the memberships.
Suppose you are looking to purchase a membership that allows you access to fitness areas, rooms, and other recreational activities and equipment. In that case, the YMCA or the Mercedes Club may not be a bad option to consider. However, a regular pool membership will be more beneficial if you solely want to utilize the pool facilities and save money.
Clubs like the YMCA and Mercedes Club have an initial fee and then a monthly membership fee. On the other hand, private pool facilities require a one-time payment and are a lot cheaper. Private outdoor pools charge a membership fee for the whole summer. Private indoor pools may charge for seasonal passes or yearly passes, depending on the facility.
Real-Examples of Pool Guest Policies
Now that you understand the basic tenets of pool guest policy, it’s time to revisit some of the pool facilities above and go over some real-life guest policies.
Mercedes Club Guest Policy
Guest fees for the Mercedes club are $50 without pool use and $100 with pool use. All guests must be 18 years old or older and accompanied by a current Mercedes member. The member is responsible for the conduct of their guest during the entire duration of their visit.
The guest is subject to all the rules and regulations of the Mercedes Club and can only visit once within a 30-day span. For guests to be able to enter the pool, they are required to wear a wristband.
YMCA Guest Policy
The YMCA allows each paying member to have three guests per year. These guests are welcome to come to the facilities free of charge. However, after three guest visits, additional guests have to pay a guest rate fee. The Guest rate fee is $10 for adults 18 years and older or $18 for families.
Guests at the YMCA must be accompanied by the YMCA member for the whole duration of their visit. The YMCA member is responsible for the behavior of their guest during the visit. When guests visit, they must provide a valid photo ID, register at the welcome center, and sign a guest waiver. In addition, all guests must comply with the YMCA regulations.
The YMCA offers complimentary guest passes for guests serious about joining the YMCA but want to sample the facilities beforehand. These guests can schedule a tour and receive a complimentary guest pass.
Pool Guest vs. Membership: Which is Best for You?
If you are a frequent guest to a private pool and enjoy using all of the facilities, you may consider purchasing your own membership.
Private pool memberships can cost anywhere from $300 to $850 for the summer. These memberships include unlimited visits to the pool, access to all pool facilities and activities, and the option of bringing your own guests to the pool.
If you would like to learn more about the pool membership costs, read through Average Cost of Pool Membership (+Real Price Examples).
Many families like to purchase memberships to pools so that their children have things to do during the summer. The pool allows children to be outside and soak up that Vitamin D. Plus, children also have the benefits of physical exercise and mingling with others. The pool is an activity that children never seem to get tired of.
Many single adults also find a pool membership worthwhile for a lot of the same reasons. For example, some adults like to utilize lap lanes to burn off calories. Other adults prefer the simple pleasure of lying by the pool and tanning.
On the other hand, many facilities, such as the YMCA and Mercedes Club (mentioned above), have memberships that extend beyond just pool use. These memberships are considered worthwhile to individuals and families that enjoy a variety of high-quality recreational and physical activities.
The cost of the membership scares many people away. Whether or not the cost of the membership is worth it depends on how often you plan on attending the pool. If you are a frequent pool goer, you are sure to get your money’s worth. However, if you only like to enjoy the pool casually, an expensive membership may not be worth the cost.