Advice for the LA market Though I have never worked in a spa, many of my students have. In Los Angeles, pay rates are between $15 and $25 which I find to be incredibly low. But, you do get tips. The biggest issue I hear from students is the turn around and lack of a break between clients. The people I know that stuck with spa massage usually work one day a week for steady income, but have developed or are continuing to develop a private clientele. I have avoided spa work by marketing my practice solely through chair massage. Some do not like the lack of security in the way I grew my practice, but I prefer some salad days over working in what I consider sweatshop conditions.