Open Path Collective vs BetterHelp: A Guide To Choosing The Right Platform


In 2023, Mental Health America reported that 42% of U.S. adults with a diagnosable mental health condition could not afford the necessary treatment. However, technology has introduced teletherapy platforms, which have made therapy more accessible than ever before.

Among these platforms, BetterHelp stands out as an online counseling service, offering access to licensed therapists at any time and from any place. In contrast, Open Path Collective is a non-profit organization providing a directory for affordable in-person and online therapy in the United States and Canada.

This article serves as a comprehensive guide, comparing Open Path Collective vs BetterHelp. It will explore the unique features of both platforms, helping you make an informed decision for your therapy needs.

BetterHelp vs Open Path Collective: What Sets Them Apart?

When comparing the two platforms, it’s crucial to first understand the unique features of each. This will help you determine if they meet your mental and emotional health needs. Choosing a plan that doesn’t align with your requirements can significantly delay your treatment.

Below is a detailed comparison of the various features and pricing plans of BetterHelp and Open Path Collective:

 comparison of the various features and pricing plans of BetterHelp and Open Path Collective:

Open Path Collective vs BetterHelp Features

Mode of Therapy

  • Open Path Collective: Provides a range of therapy options. It caters to both online and in-person preferences across all 50 U.S. states, Puerto Rico, and Canada. It offers some therapists specializing in online sessions, while others exclusively provide in-person therapy.
  • BetterHelp: This platform operates solely online, offering users the convenience of video therapy and access to virtual therapy rooms. It features chatrooms where users can maintain continuous communication with their therapists, seek advice or discuss various assignments.

Process of Choosing A Therapist

  • Open Path Collective: Initially, you need to browse the therapist directory to select a suitable therapist. After finding one, you pay a one-time membership fee. Following this, you can directly contact your therapist to arrange a second recurring payment for their private services. This process also includes the flexibility to switch therapists if necessary.
  • BetterHelp: After completing the signup process, which involves filling out a questionnaire, you are automatically matched with a therapist. This platform typically takes 24-48 hours to connect clients with suitable therapists. Additionally, it offers the flexibility to choose a different counselor after the initial match, ensuring that clients find the right fit for their needs.

Pricing and Plans

  • Open Path Collective: The service is designed for clients without adequate health insurance or those who can’t afford standard therapy rates. Open Path requires a one-time $65 lifetime subscription, followed by $40–$70 per session paid directly to the therapist for individual therapy.
  • BetterHelp: Charges its users every four weeks, with the cost ranging from $240 to $360 per billing cycle, or $60 to $90 weekly, as long as the membership remains active. However, these rates may vary based on factors such as the user’s location, preferences, and therapist availability.

Services Provided

  • Open Path Collective: Therapists on this platform address issues based on their specific areas of training. To find the right professional for your particular issue or condition, you can utilize the “specialties” filter in the Open Path therapist directory. It has therapy options for couples, individuals, and families.
  • BetterHelp: Offers individual therapy services and also includes group webinars. Their therapists provide various types of specialized therapies, primarily following the cognitive-behavioral therapy approach. The areas of treatment include:
  • Anxiety
  • Panic
  • Depression
  • Anger Management
  • History of Abuse
  • Eating disorders
  • Trauma.

Additional Features

  • Open Path Collective: Features a blog with inspirational posts and wellness courses, covering topics like coaching, acupuncture, nutrition, and yoga. Additionally, it offers an affordable wellness course for a one-time registration fee of $4.99. This serves as a valuable resource for those seeking support but unable to afford therapy.
  • Betterhelp: Provides therapist-reviewed articles on mental health topics. For support resources, it offers personalized worksheets from therapists, a journaling feature for post-session reflections, and a goal-setting tool for tracking therapist-assigned tasks.

How To Choose the Right Platform?

Selecting the appropriate therapy and platform is essential for positive outcomes. This involves knowing your expectations and flexibility before assessing various teletherapy options.

To assist you in making an informed decision between Open Path Collective vs BetterHelp, consider the following factors:

Keep Your Budget In Mind

Both platforms provide therapy at affordable rates, but considering your budget is key to selecting the most suitable option. Open Path Collective, being a nonprofit, caters exclusively to clients with financial constraints. If you can’t afford standard therapy rates, Open Path is an ideal choice.

In contrast, BetterHelp offers access to licensed therapists with a billing cycle every four weeks. In return, it provides you with licensed therapists and several additional resources for support.

Consider What is Convenient For You

While both platforms aim to make therapy accessible, it’s important to consider your own convenience when choosing the right service. BetterHelp is particularly beneficial if you find it difficult to leave home or face commuting challenges. It allows you to connect with your therapist through various channels, catering to different communication styles.

On the other hand, Open Path Collective provides both online and in-person therapy options. If you prefer face-to-face interactions, this platform could better suit your needs.

Scheduling Appointments

Both platforms offer therapist matching, but their appointment scheduling processes differ. With BetterHelp’s dedicated phone app, you’re matched with a therapist shortly after completing the form.

In contrast, Open Path Collective doesn’t have a phone app. After selecting a therapist from their directory, you receive a member ID, which you use to contact the therapist directly.

Key Takeaways
  • BetterHelp offers anytime online therapy, while Open Path Collective provides affordable in-person and online options in the U.S. and Canada.
  • Open Path Collective and BetterHelp differ in therapy modes, therapist selection processes, pricing, and additional features offered.
  • BetterHelp has a systematic therapist-matching process and a variety of therapy services. Open Path provides a more hands-on approach to selecting therapists and includes resources like wellness courses and a therapeutic blog.
  • The choice between Open Path Collective and BetterHelp depends on understanding your budget, needs, and preferences.