Report: #268499

Complaint Review: Bluegreen Vacation Resorts

  • Submitted: Sat, August 18, 2007
  • Updated: Fri, March 01, 2013
  • Reported By: Chuckey Tennessee
  • Bluegreen Vacation Resorts
    Pigeon Forge, Tennessee

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Bluegreen vacation resorts are nothing but a scam to get your money. While my husband & myself were in Gatlinburg on a weekend getaway, we were confronted on the street & asked to spend 90 minutes taking a tour of a fabulous resort that would change our lives. Well that was one thing they had right, it really has changed our lives we owe about $9,000 and have yet to go on a vacation.

Initally we were sold 8000 points to use over 2 years. Then we were invited back to do a "owners orientation" to learn how to use our points. I was really suprised that on a "owners weekend" that we didn't even get to stay at the resort but in a motel. On that weekend we went back & found out that we could not use our points for anything, anywhere or anytime. Because we needed to buy more points. I told the sales person that we had tried to make reservations & everywhere we tried to make reservations were booked up. He said that he found that hard to believe. He also stated it was probably because we did not have enough points to make the needed week long reservation a year in advance.

I questioned him, & stated that when we initally purchased our timeshare that the sales rep stated that we could just come to Pigeon Forge or Gatlinburg for a long weekend by using our unlimited bonus days for $49, $59, or $79 with only a 48 hour notice. He looked at me as if I had 3 heads & said oh no, no, no. You must have misunderstood. Our initial sales rep also told us that with our 8000 points we could "go virtually anywhere in the world". Boy, that was a good one too. When we were at our first sales meeting, he told us all of the paper work would be mailed. 15-20 days later after we were at home we recieved the paper work & it stated that if we had changed our minds that we had 10 days from signing to return the contracts to bluegreen. We signed on the day we were there & didn't get the papers until 2 weeks later, "too late already" to do anything about it. Our sales rep also stated if for any we decided that for any reason we did not want it, bluegreen would buy it back. That if anything we could look at this as an investment for our daughters future. On the owners weekend for orientation, they also had to reorient me on that one, "oh bluegreen will be happy to give you the number for Pinnacle, a time share sales company".

By this time at our owners orientation, I'm virtually in tears asking my husband what we have done & how on earth we are going to ever get rid of it. Not to mention the money we will have to spend the rest of our lives in maintenance fees & club dues, that our sales rep continued to skirt around when we questioned about it.
Funny thing is that my husband misunderstood the exact same things I did. But one thing we are both sure about is that we have been ripped off.

Chuckey, Tennessee

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 08/18/2007 01:52 PM and is a permanent record located here: The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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#1 Consumer Comment

Learn to use your Bluegreen

AUTHOR: Scarlettt - ()

We have taken the time to learn how to use our Bluegreen and LOVE it !

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#2 Consumer Comment

Do Not Buy Bluegreen - Scams 101

AUTHOR: HeatherSTL - ()

Wow! I was told the nearly the same thing during the Bluegreen sales pitch at Big Cedar near Branson, MO - the sales lady kept saying - you can stay at Big Cedar anytime, in one of the log cabins for $59, $69, or $79 bucks a night, depending on how many bedrooms you need! She said - all you have to do is call ahead a week or two in advance. She did mention that holidays like fourth of July would not be available but she kept going on and on how my husband could just pack up his fishing gear and head down to Big Cedar anytime he wanted for very cheap. I looked online at the prices prior to arriving so I knew the cabins were several hundred dollars a night - this is where we almost signed up. I mean we were talking numbers and everything, getting ready to start signing the paperwork. I've learned that whole deal was a complete LIE in hopes to getting us to sign up!

I feel for you! These sales people are very good at what they do. I had no idea what I was in for prior to the sales pitch. I went in with an "open mind" - not a good thing for this type of sales pitch. 
Let me go back a little about my story- remember, I went in with an open mind, I was with my boyfriend at the time, who I wasn't even engaged to but we were serious (and married now).... We were one on one with a sales lady. She was attractive, very talkative and we got along well with her. She told us at least 20 different stories, how's she been all over the world with her family to places like Aruba, the Bahamas, etc. she said it wouldn't have been possible without BlueGreen. 
Then she started talking how vacations now days cost anywhere from 2,000-4,000 and each year the cost go up - so she starts talking how expensive it will be to travel in the future and this is where Bluegreen comes in - buy points now (at today's price) and then use them forever - saving thousands because we'd be locking in our cost with our points. It all sounded good and seemed to make sense at the time. 
We then toured some of the cabins at Big Cedar - they looked really nice. This is when my boyfriend started leaning toward actually signing up- he was so excited at the thought of coming to Big Cedar to fish anytime he wanted to for so cheap....Next we went over to a different conference room area. This is where we started talking numbers. We started discussing the cheapest package - I think it was around $15,000... All I remember is we'd be able to take 1-2 nice trips a year. Again, this all sounded good. The lady had several huge brochure books of all their resorts - I mean hundreds of pages of resorts all over the world. She kept asking where our first trip would be to. I was in full vacation dream mode. Again, everything was going well, we were totally mesmorized..
Then I asked the lady for a moment alone to discuss everything with my bf. After she left I grabbed my iPhone and typed in "bluegreen reviews" - the second or third site that popped up was complaints. I started reading thru a couple of horror stories and immediately had cold feet. Then the sales lady returned- literally 2-3 minutes later. This is where I showed my first sign of doubt. She quickly reassured me that this was an investment (of a lifetime) and that we would be getting a great deal. 
There was lots of other things going on during this presentation such as "extras" being thrown in. Again, everything seemed amazing... One thing offered was some yacht club that usually cost about 10,000 but we would have access to it for only a couple hundred dollars (I believe this was another lie)... 
Again, after reading the negative reviews I was showing doubt (but I didn't mention that I had read anything). The sales lady quickly got me out of my seat and took me over to about a 50" plasma tv and showed me all the resorts in HD - yeah they looked good, but they should!
Again, more doubt so this is when a guy in a nice suit came over - he shook our hands and then tried offering us a better deal as in, less money, more points, more extras.... my boyfriend looked at me - it was all up to me at this point.. The sales lady, the sales guy, and my boyfriend all looked at me and I finally said - NO. I couldn't believe I was calling the shots either lol.. But I declined. The lady was quick to say thanks and she was out of there within 30 seconds. I will say that everyone was professional and no one ever got rude with us (which I have read has happened to others)...  I will add that signing off - stating that were were not buying (yes, you have to sign a piece of paper if you don't buy!) felt like I was signing my soul away to the devil - that's how good these people are - they make you feel like you're leaving a deal of a life time!
I felt so bad saying no. I felt like I had an invisible gun to my head - that's how much pressure I felt during this whole thing. The more we talked numbers the closer the gun felt to my head. It didn't help that my boyfriend made me in charge of deciding either... In all my life, I think my blood pressure went up to an unsafe level that day. Again, I cannot truly express the pressure I felt during this sales presentation. All I can say is the people we dealt with we're very good at what they do!
After I said no, I did the "walk of shame" down to another room to get my gift cards Bass pro had promised... I was offered a one time deal for $999 for one week vacation. I wanted to sign up because I felt so bad about not buying but then something held me back - I knew if I bought this package I would have to attend another sales pitch - with that thought in mind, I declined. I got my gift cards and was out of there, almost 3 hours later!
That day, I saw about 6-10 couples signing up!
Here are some red flags after going thru the sale pitch and reading reviews online- 
- initial cost. We were told anywhere from 15,000-30,000 upfront
- annual dues/fees. These can change at anytime and you must pay or you're not awarded points. We were quoted around $700 a year for fees for one of the lowest packages! 
-no airfare is included
Recap: with the large investment upfront, plus annual fees, and NO airfare, it just doesn't make sense to me. I'm sure some people use it to their advantage but I'm so thankful I passed.
- financing - we were told we could finance the large upfront costs at around 18% interest!
-they want you to "grandfather" your kids in and say things like "it's a tax write off" - its more like, you can't get rid of it even after you die because you got your kids involved (it's passed to your kids, they have to pay the fees then!) I also doubt that it's a tax write off. I have read other reviews stating they couldn't write anything off.  
-they say their resorts all over the world are top class. I don't believe this for a second! I have read countless reviews of the "dumps" people have stayed at and learned that members usually get the crappiest rooms! Just use Vegas as an example - bluegreen says they have two "resorts" there - they aren't even on the strip! You mean to tell me, a huge company like bluegreen doesn't even have hotel on the Vegas strip? They don't! Look up some of their hotels/resorts on TripAdvisor - they are NEVER rated in the top 10.. Again, another lie by Bluegreen - they make you think you're staying at the best of the best- not true!
- look up "bluegreen club 36" in las Vegas on tripadvisor- it's rated #118 of 271 hotels in Vegas- that's terrible! The place is a dump but bluegreen makes you think they have "resorts" everywhere - another LIE! You can read reviews from actual timeshare owners on tripadvisor- they say for themselves - the place sucks!
- look up Bluegreen hotels for yourself - they aren't rated good. Here's another example - Bluegreen Fountains Resort in Orlando, FL.. It's rated #77 of 328 hotels... Does anyone see the problems I see? If I'm paying 15000 upfront, I'd at least like nice hotels that have good ratings! 
- if bluegreen had true "resorts" that ranked in the top 10 on Tripadvisor then I'd be willing to have nicer things to say- but they won't and never will.. You know why? Because people keep paying thousands to sign up and someone is getting very rich (remember money makes the world go round) this money, if any, actually goes toward your stay at these places.. It's all a scam.
-I have read hundreds of reviews of people stating they can't get into the hotel or resort of their choice! I believe this claim after waiting 8 months to get into Big Cedar.
- I know some members personally that bought years ago and they said its the worst thing they have ever bought. Yes they use their points, and go to the same dump each year, it would be cheaper NOT to go thru Bluegreen!
-Points - say you have your points and find a resort but Bluegreen says its not available - I can almost bet that if you search online for the same dates (Expedia) there are rooms available! This should piss off Bluegreen members at all costs! Imagine paying thousands, having to wait for your points (because you can't book until you receive your points) and then your hotel of choice is booked thru Bluegreen (but available to everyone one via the Internet) ...
-Using points- Example: say you're awarded your points each year in May, now say you want to take a trip in July (same year). You can't book your July trip until you have the points in your account so by the time you get your points in May - the hotel you're looking at is probably already booked two months later. This is a SCAM! Who wants to worry about this or try to book 1-2 years in advance? NOT ME!
More lies I was told-
--I was told I could book Big Cedar log cabins almost anytime of the year for as little as $59 bucks a night - I don't believe this at all! For of all, I signed up at Bass Pro in April for this deal and the FIRST available dates at Big Cedar (Fri-Sun) weren't until DEC!! That just shows how far in advance this place is booked! I guarantee members get the last available room, if any!
-- I was told a story how a guy came to the sales pitch, declined the offer (signed off saying he declined) and then tried to go thru the sales pitch again (a couple weeks later) because the deal was so good! I believe entirely that this story was a LIE - it was told to me in hopes to make me believe this timeshare is a deal of a lifetime! -That its so good that people try to come back because they didn't sign up the first time around. Keep in mind, during the sales pitch, I believed this. I was believing everything! The lady went on to say that they wouldn't let the guy sign up because he had already decline! Again, another lie- these snakes would take money from anyone! AND, AND- I was at Bass Pro a couple weeks ago and offered this deal again - I told them I already went and they said I could go again since its over a year! -Proof! You can sign up at a later time!
- lie after lie - that is what Bluegreen told me that day. I have no doubt that I made the right decision that day by passing on the deal! I believe Bluegreen sales reps lie to get people to sign up and that is deceptive and isn't good business. 
Last thoughts:
If I want to take a vacation, I don't want to wait for "points" to come, especially after paying annual fees that can and will increase with time! I don't want to stay at dumps either. I work full time and vacations are important to me. I want to stay at top rated resorts and not have to worry about more meetings about updates - which is actually another con by Bluegreen trying to sell more points to members.. 
You may be wondering why I care so much since I didn't sign up and all I can say is, I'm hoping my story will help someone else in the future not sign up! If it wasn't for me reading a couple of horror stories online the day of the sales pitch - I probably would have signed up.
What do I say to those who are happy with Bluegreen? Good for them, it's nice to know some people still enjoy their vacations and don't feel ripped off. As for me, I'm happy I didn't sign up. I will stand by that decision!
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#3 Consumer Suggestion

I love my Bluegreen

AUTHOR: Scarlettt - (United States of America)

I, along with thousands of others, love my Bluegreen. I have taken the time to go to and read all the FAQs and information there. I have also gone online to learn all that I can about how best to use my points.

There is no reason for you to be unable to use your current points if you plan in advance, or are able to take advantage of hot weeks, or bonus time.

The first step towards enjoying your Bluegreen ownership is to educate yourself to learn how it works.

When you made your purchase there was a line by line taped conversation in which you acknowledged that you understood your purchase.

It is totally untrue that you " cannot use our points for anything, anywhere, or anytime "..

We bought our first 7,000 points in Gatlinburg in 2006 and have enjoyed many vacations.

Planning in advance, or finding last minute reservations because others have cancelled their reservations are the two key means of booking reservations.

If you read your paperwork, you would have seen that you had a ten day cancellation timeframe..

There is a Bluegreen group on Yahoo, that you should find very helpful.

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#4 Consumer Suggestion

Always get paperwork as soon as you sign it!

AUTHOR: Brad In Louisiana - (U.S.A.)

I too was sold a blugreen sampler package. I demanded that they give me copies of all the contracts, etc on the spot, before I gave them any money. I have since requested it be canceled and a refund sent, so I will wait to see how they handle it, but my advice to you is NEVER sign papers or give money unless you get COPIES of it all on the spot. Usually contracts state something like "by signing below I acknowledge that I have received a copy." So basically if you did not get a copy, you gave away your right to have it on the spot.

I do know from the information they gave us, the sampler programs are VERY limited, and your travel CANNOT be in the summer, so yes, they are useless.
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