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Looks very similar to Freedom Boat Club. I know a guy who did it and was fairly happy with it. The biggest drawback according to him was the price. Apparently, it's really expensive and there were some issues with getting the boat he wanted a couple times. I looked into it, but I'd rather have my own vessel.
 

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nothing like being able to pack your own boat and roll it a mile or even 5 miles (depending on which bridge tunnels you want to fish) slide it in the water and off you go with out worrying about availability, times oh and not to mention if water conditions (swells) are bad that day!!
 

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Talked to a guy last night about it.
Price is around $5000 a year. They have 41 boats at this time. You call and reserve a date. When you get there the boat is fueled and clean. You take it out do your fishing. Bring it back. They clean and refuel for you. Just reserve when you are ready to fish again. At least that is the way he explained it to me.
 

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they refuel for you @ $8 per gallon...it ends up costing more than buying your own...I looked into this and figured...may not get the fishing boat I want, have a distance and time limit, and have to refill at their dock...so , $14k a year...that would be my use...by a good used boat...with lots of use and its $8k tops...boat HOs it goes down some...
 

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Be Very Careful

I went to see about the club and found myself trapped in a little room with a guy that pressured my wife and I like we were in a timeshare presentation. We talked to some of the current members and found out it is the same thing as the Freedom Boat Club but they are no longer part of the franchise so they had to change their name. We were a little disappointed that we couldn't use any of the other clubs except a few in D.C and New York. The members had nice things to say but said that the club had been going downhill and they have a very hard time getting a boat, especially during peak season. They also said they were afraid that the club might not be around in a few years and that the money they had invested might just go to waste. Some said the boats were getting old and the club kept promising new ones but haven't been able to produce.
The prices were outrageous, as a previous boat owner I know for a fact I could have my own boat for less than $5000 a year, not to mention the joining fee that they want upfront, something like $7000. Obviously we didn't end up joining, just too many uncertainties.
 

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GOIN DEEP...welcome to P&S...thanks for the report...I posted my thoughts earlier in this post...I'm in sales and got the same pitch...when I told him what I do for a living he just kept going, and going...geezzz
 

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carefree boat club

I see alot of negative comments in reference to the carefree boat club, and wanted to explain how things work... I was one of the first members of the club in 2003, and at that point they had 3 boats and 6 other members. I am an avid fisherman, and take their boats out an average of 45-50 times per year. since 2003 they have grown to over 330 members, and over 45 boats. Now im not going to say that i get the boat i want anytime i want it, but it is based on a reservation basis. they do not charge $8 a gallon, they only charge the prices at the pumps from the marina. I figure i have put over 2000 hours on their boats in the last 5 years. I am in my 50's, and have owned 12 boats of my own in my life, and can tell you that 2000 hours on a boat is approx 2 motor replacements running at about 14k each. I pay a little over $300 per month, run the heck out of all of their boats, and do not have to worry about a damn thing... Joining the club has been one of the best things I have ever done in my life, and If i would have joined a club like this 25 years ago, I would probably be retired seeing that in the last 25 years I have spent over 800k on boats...
 

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I went to see about the club and found myself trapped in a little room with a guy that pressured my wife and I like we were in a timeshare presentation. We talked to some of the current members and found out it is the same thing as the Freedom Boat Club but they are no longer part of the franchise so they had to change their name. We were a little disappointed that we couldn't use any of the other clubs except a few in D.C and New York. The members had nice things to say but said that the club had been going downhill and they have a very hard time getting a boat, especially during peak season. They also said they were afraid that the club might not be around in a few years and that the money they had invested might just go to waste. Some said the boats were getting old and the club kept promising new ones but haven't been able to produce.
The prices were outrageous, as a previous boat owner I know for a fact I could have my own boat for less than $5000 a year, not to mention the joining fee that they want upfront, something like $7000. Obviously we didn't end up joining, just too many uncertainties.
Can you please give me more information about Freedom Boat Club, are they still in business. This would be extremely helpful to me.
 

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Maybe my two cents doesn't matter since this thread started back on March 9, 2008 but my experience with the Carefree Boat Club was less than favorable.

My wife and I initially met one of the salesmen at the boat show in Virginia Beach. We were gullable and gave them my cell phone number for a point of contact. (first mistake)

After a few calls from them we scheduled a time and date to meet down at Long Bay Point Marina. We showed up on time but had to wait for the guy to get done trying to shmoose some other poor couple. When finially meeting, we were then cornered in a one-on-one conversation. (second mistake) As one of the above post describes, there was a small room that they tried to cram us into. I opted to stay outside and not get cornered any further into a completely unescapable situation.

The salesman tried to show us the big cruisers "everybody" was taking out and having the time of their lives on (which cost much more money for the "upgradeed membership"). I tried to explain our requirements of a more appropriate "fishing" vessel that also fit into our budget a little better. "All boats can be fishing boats" was his reply... I guess if I wanted to go striper fishing on a 60 foot cruiser running up and down the stairs trying to drive and tend the poles at the same time, all boats "can" be fishing boats.
When we got down to brass tacks (money) the $7000.00 figure was thrown out there for an initial buy-in price. But wait! Financing is available with approved credit check!

As one of the above posts mentions, you can get your own boat for the price the boat club requires (unless you're wanting a 55 foot Hatteras). And when you're done with the payments on your own boat, guess what? It's yours. You don't have to share, schedule available dates, or mess with boat club salesmen.

Oh yeah, did I mention they have my e-mail address too? (third mistake) After repeated replies to their e-mails asking them to take me off the contacts list they're STILL e-mailing me! I guess I should be thankfull they stopped calling.

I bought my OWN boat in May. I'm making payments on it, but it's mine to do what I want when I want.

As you see in other posts, some people may be happy with the boat club membership. I would not have been one of them.
 

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Care Free Boat Club

To kirbstyle,

I'm interested in getting a boat or joining a boat club.
I have never boated before.
I can sign up for a boat club for $3900 and $450 a month for 5 years.
That is a total of $30,900 for 6 years a boating including maintenance, cleaning and slip fees.
Here's their fleet. http://www.carefreeboats.com/upperbay/fleet.htm
I don't think I can buy a boat for that. I would think that slip fees, maintenance, cleaning and depreciation would cost a lot more.
I could buy a Sea Ray 260 Sundancer. MSRP without options for $98,000.
I would bet that depreciation of this boat is more than my 6 year membership cost alone.
If you can show me how to get a boat for less than that let me know.

Torben

:fishing:
 

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I belong to www.goboatingnow.com and LOVE IT...No bad things to say AT ALL...Previously called Club Nautico...LOVE it! Best investment ever. And NO they do NOT charge you EIGHT dollars a gallon, its $2.75 a gallon right now. I have never had a problem getting the boat I want, and never had an issue. I would NEVER own another boat, if you GAVE me one...not worth it. The Boat club you aint gotta worry bout nothing, pay the fees, call and tell them what boat, go fishing, bring it back and leave. No insurance, no cleaning, no maintenance...WELL WORTH IT!
 

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To kirbstyle,

I'm interested in getting a boat or joining a boat club.
I have never boated before.
I can sign up for a boat club for $3900 and $450 a month for 5 years.
That is a total of $30,900 for 6 years a boating including maintenance, cleaning and slip fees.
Here's their fleet. http://www.carefreeboats.com/upperbay/fleet.htm
I don't think I can buy a boat for that. I would think that slip fees, maintenance, cleaning and depreciation would cost a lot more.
I could buy a Sea Ray 260 Sundancer. MSRP without options for $98,000.
I would bet that depreciation of this boat is more than my 6 year membership cost alone.
If you can show me how to get a boat for less than that let me know.

Torben

:fishing:
Um...2 words for you...Boaters Education...THEN...Go buy a cheaper boat, OR a boat club membership...and use it...then decide if you want a $100k boat. Buying a $100k boat for you first boat, is just STUPID. I've been boating all my life (20 years) and guess what, I will NEVER own a boat again. Boat Clubs or nothing at all. No maintenance, no insurance, no cleaning, don't have to worry about hurricanes, no titles no NOTHING...Just fish and go. Like I said in an earlier post, you couldn't GIVE me a boat right now, aint worth the hassle or aggervation!!
 

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Carefree Boatclub Member

I have been a club member for several years. Nice for the novice, who would struggle with all the pitfalls of owning their own boat. Repair costs, docking fees, purchase price and maintenance of boats add up. Club is expensive, but allow you a variety of boating experiences, and spare you all the upkeep headaches. Boats are quite available off season, and if reservations made well in advance, available peak season. The club is a business, so they cannot have a fleet so large that boats are always readily available, every day of the year.
I think overall, they do a great job. I certainly prefer mastering my boating skills on their fleet, rather than on my own six figure boat that I'd be stuck with until I find a sucker to buy from me, at a third of the cost, after 5 or 6 years of headaches. I may buy my own boat someday, but will have a significant amount of boating experience with a variety of boats before buying. I will have a much better idea of what I truly want to own, and will have the skills to take reasonable care of the boat following years of practice on boats that the club allows me to use.
My 1 complaint with Carefree was their break from Freedom Boatclub. Yes, it saves them money not having to pay franchise fee, but as a member, none of that savings was passed down to me. Yet, I can no longer hop on a boat when I travel the southeastern coast, which was a big reason why I joined the club initially. I was also amazed that the change to carefree boatclub was made without any warning. There was no offer to allow existing members to opt out of the club with refunds when that change was made. I wonder if that was legal?
 

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Membership Director of Carefree Boat Club is a Shady Guy

I really would like to join the boat club, however, after meeting the Membership Director Leo, I received a pit in my stomach and am running away. Here are my top complaints:

1) Today's companies are transparent. Information is on the Internet. Carefree Boat Club, however, wants you to come in so that they can give you a Used Car Salesmen pitch. When I asked for pricing information or literature, the first answer was that they didn't have it. They proceeded to give a 20 minutes sales pitch and THEN actually broke out some literature and pricing. He absolutely forgot that he had told me that he didn't have anything on hand. ???

2) They tell you that membership is closed due to popular demand. Yet, they pitch you relentlessly to join. I don't get it. By telling me that it's closed, is that supposed to make me want to be a part of the club even more? What kind of outdated tactics are these? Had they treated me like an intelligent shopper and been upfront about what I'm getting for my thousands of dollars, I wouldn't have felt that they are as scheming as they are.

3) They told me that "no insurance" is required. This was supposed to highlight the fact how much cheaper it is to belong to the club than it is owning your own boat. Cool... I don't really care that much about this expense when compared to the huge initiation fee, etc... I get home with their literature that they finally produced at the end of the meeting, and there it says that you MUST get insurance. ??? Seriously?

4) The prices are extremely contradictory. One sheet says one thing; the other sheet says another thing. And of course the Director can "sweeten the deal" should you sign up today. Why why why was it SOOO hard to get pricing info out these guys? Is this what car shopping used to be like in the 80's? The world has moved on and yet these guys are seriously stuck in the past with the mentality of lie, deceive and trick the shopper. I have never had this experience before. After carefully studying the notes and the fliers, I can say that I still don't know what my costs will be. Pretty bad.

5) I am told that I can four reservations in their system at any time. Fair enough. They volunteered this information; I didn't ask. I get home and it clearly states that you only get four reservations if you go for their most upgraded package. The other two packages only provide one reservation at a time. So, if you book a July reservation, you can't make any other reservations for the months of March, April, June, etc... Again, I would have digested this concept much better had I not been deceived up front with cheap yesterday's sales tactics. Information should be on your site!! Let people shop online! We don't need to be "tricked" in person. Again - this is a generation long gone, thank goodness.

There are many other examples that I could provide, but you get the picture. Carefree Boat Club is shady. If you're going to lie to me upfront, what would our relationship be like once I give you tens of thousands of dollars? Hmmm... let me guess. Take my money and run - clearly.
 

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sure is a lot of first time posters here...makes me wonder..
2.75 a gallon of gas? who u foolin'?
talked with a person who is interested in this crap and that's what it is. time share. thats all it is. tell me you can get only 2000hrs on a motor? who u foolin'?
what kinda fool would buy a new boat as a first boat? someone who has more money than sense? i'd suggest testing the waters to see if you are really interested in having the pride of an ownership of a boat. i've never owned a boat that i didnt sell for what i paid for it, so far.
i was told there is a 5000 buy in fee and 200.00 a month whether you use it or not.
PLEASE tell me where this marina is that only charges 2.75 for a gallon of gas...
there are many boats that are reliable for under 5000.00 that would never give you a bit of trouble.
I'd love to get into this business, i could retire early. buy a house on the water and watch the people take my boats out while i count my cash.
buy yourself a boat for under 5000.00 and ride it till it dies and you've saved yourself (like someone posted here) a MILLION DOLLARS in boat fees...:p

there are a lot of people who can help you with the purchase of a boat who are non-bias. ask around but leave the timeshares at the dock.:cool:
 

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I know this thread is long dead but I did notice too that a lot of imposters woops I ment posters who said it was a great deal were 1 time only posters and have never been back....:D
 

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I don't think this thread is dead. Once you have found out about evaluating your boat, there are lots of things that you can do during the sale to make sure that you get the most value out of the transaction.
 

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I know this thread is long dead but I did notice too that a lot of imposters woops I ment posters who said it was a great deal were 1 time only posters and have never been back....:D
Boards or anything else you post on the internet never dies. It justs sits there providing either good or bad info and if you're a radical evidence at your trial :)
I thought about the CBC but decided to buy my own 1994 22' Bayliner 2252 with a 6 cylinder Ford and Mercruiser Alpha 1 drive - condition fair.
Base Cost with trailer $ 8,000.00 (This is full paid equity subject to depreciation). Assorted expenses during first season e.g. training books, lessons for me & m8s, addl. battery, sea grass removals and normal and seasonal maintenance by people who don't want to give away trade secrets, 12 month high & dry storage, marine surveyor, marine binoculars, Portable auto/marine GPS, Portable DSC radio, 2 automatic life jackets, gas to schlepp from home to boat, lunches brought for victims I mean guests willing to ship out with an idiot and assorted sundry other items all add up to $ 500.92 per month which tells me I'm better off with my own boat even if it isn't brand new it's mine and has my loving touches e.g. air conditioning all over it.

That was the first year and considering the additions/repairs and corrections I've made it will be less next year. I can't begin to tell you how much I have learned about boats in one year. It's going to be a lot harder to BS Ye Olde Captain next year. I still own the equity in the original $8K investment so if I change my mind and want to bail out I can sell a good boat to somebody for a song and get to keep a substantial amount of what would have been a total loss had I joined the CBC. Boating ain't cheap by any stretch no matter how you do it, the trick is making it fit your pocketbook.

What is most lacking on the internet are people willing to post what happened after their original problem is solved.

Seasick
 
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