Walking through a Bass Pro Shops in Nashville, my husband and I were approached by a Bluegreen sales person. We were offered 2 $25 gift cards to Bass Pro Shops if we take a 3 day/2 night stay at one of their resorts for $59 and attend a short 90 minute presentation. We figured we were getting to stay somewhere for $9 (minus the $50 in gift cards we would get) for a short presentation; great! You can't stay anywhere for $9. So, they got us. We were told we could stay at any of 7 resorts for this price and at anytime. We chose Pigeon Forge since it was close and nice in the fall. When I called to make reservations for the weekend we decided on, I was told that that time was already booked. I told the lady on the phone that the salesman told us we could stay anytime and that was the only time we would be able to stay. She called me back hours later saying she found room for us (imagine that!)
We received 3 letters in the mail from them, but none of them had the place we were staying listed; they all said it was to be determined. I called repeatedly and was told that "it would be in the system soon." I was beginning to get a glimpse of how Bluegreen ran things and it was definitely a turn off.
So, the time came, and we arrived at the check-in center. We found out that we weren't staying at a resort at all; we were put in a hotel. The hotel, by the way, was the probably the dumpiest hotel in the city. The beds were like sleeping on concrete and the location was terrible. I figured if a company wanted us to buy something from them, they would at least show us that we were important to them by putting us in a nice place to stay. I guess for $9, you get what you pay for.
After a terrible night of sleep in our dump of a hotel, we went to the presentation, which was only supposed to be 90-120 minutes long. We were met face-to-face with a very nice salesgirl. She was super nice, very informative, great tours of the resort types they had available, etc. Then, the shark (sales manager) came in to tell us the costs. 35,000 points for $52,000. Are you kidding!? Then, they gave us a low-ball when we told them there was no way we could make another mortgage payment for a place we didn't even own. The shark was very rude when we turned that down as well. She told my husband that she knew he could find the money somewhere to pay for it. (yeah, like groceries? I don't think so. I stay home with our children and my husband brings home the bacon.) My husband explained that the 16.99% interest they were charging us was way too high and quite ridiculous to even offer. Then she told us they had a credit card with 6 months same as cash. (Sure, let's get a credit card too! Why not? Financial ruin is why we went in the first place!) We told her that in a few years it may be something we could consider, but not right now. Then she said, "why, are you going back to work?" As if that were the only reason we would have more money. We ignored the comment, but if I were easily offended, I would have been.
At that point, they could have given us the points and we wouldn't have taken them. The salesgirl was very polite and after turning down everything else the shark had to offer us (which was much, much more), and telling us that we "won't ever get a deal like this again," I felt sorry for our salesgirl; that she was a part of that. The presentation was not 90-120 minutes long; it took 2 and a half hours...that's 150 minutes of our time. Thank GOD we didn't purchase! We felt guilty for not buying right after, which is how they want you to feel, but are so thankful now. It's a rip-off after thinking more about it. You pay all this money, get a deed to someplace you may never stay (if it even exists!) and can only stay at Bluegreen resorts (I know about RCI, but get real!). So much for solitude during vacation!