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Posted on: June 19, 2017

 Darn Those Last Minute Cancellations!! Uggggg

If you're a self-employed massage therapist or an esthetician, you know how aggravating those last-minute cancellations can be. Your time is money and you've just lost money because of a client.

Or have you? Depending on your outlook and your policies, a last-minute cancellation can provide you with some paid time off. As therapists and estheticians, we tend to be nurturing people, so we frequently give so much to others that we're often in a self-care deficit unless we're very careful. If you work at a day spa, use the time to take advantage of some of its amenities.

When you're your own boss, you need to set policies that are fair to both your clients and yourself. One of the easiest ways to take care of yourself is to provide clients with a copy of your policies and have them sign a document stating they received them and agree to them. One of those policies should detail your policy on handling last minute cancellations.

If a client cancels at the last minute, he or she is charged for the session. If the client is late, he or she will receive a massage for the balance of their scheduled session but will pay for the entire session. Missed massage appointments will be billed at the normal rate. This needn't apply to emergencies because sometimes things happen, but clients who are habitually late or no-shows are too expensive to retain.

For example, if a client is 20 minutes late for a 60-minute session, then he or she will receive a 40-minute session but pay for the entire 60 minutes. If a client refuses to agree to this, refer them elsewhere. If you're a massage therapist or esthetician at a day spa, this can be negotiated into your work contract if you don't get paid for no-shows. Eventually, everything works out the way it should so don't stress and enjoy the extra free time. Even if you lose money on an occasional no-show, take this time to relax and practice some self-care.

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