Booking beauty and fitness appointments by phone can be an irritating chore, what with the muzak to be endured, the difficulty of finding convenient appointment times and the potential for coworkers to overhear too much about one’s personal hygiene. Paying full price makes the burden doubly irksome, so New Yorkers could only have been pleased recently to witness the launch of Lifebooker.com.Lifebooker is like a personal concierge that lets users search, browse and book discounted appointments at the top health and beauty spots in New York City for free. An extensive array of beauty and health services are listed on the site, which has forged partnerships with local establishments through which they set up profiles including business descriptions and complete service menus. Each spa, salon and studio posts real-time appointment availabilities on Lifebooker as well, allowing users to search through them dynamically online. Users simply enter the criteria they seek (service type, date, time and neighbourhood), click the “Find” button and Lifebooker produces an up-to-the-minute list of what the city has to offer. Users can also browse ratings both for the establishment and the service type, created by members who have actually booked and honoured appointments there. Once chosen, appointments can be booked online and are sent to the user’s cellphone.
In addition to the convenience of booking online, Lifebooker also offers exclusive discounts at the city’s top health and beauty spots, negotiated specifically for users of the site. Perhaps even better, each time a user attends an appointment booked on Lifebooker and then rates it afterward, they earn reward dollars that can be used toward their next appointment. Booking and rating a USD 100 facial appointment, for example, earns USD 5 in reward dollars that can be used as early as the next day. Just by cutting through the hassle and streamlining the appointment-booking process, Lifebooker could gain a devoted following. The addition of discounts, honest ratings and a reward system, however, promises to make the service irresistible. One to replicate in cities around the world! (Related: Mobile beauty salon makes everything transparent.)