How it all began
As I stated earlier, we joined Bluegreen in September 2011 in Pigeon Forge, TN. We were visiting a Bass Pro Shop in Orlando and were accosted by a Bluegreen sales rep. He offered us a 3 day/2 night stay in any of their resorts for $99, which we would essentially get back after our visit. We blew him off 3 times that day but eventually returned to hear his spiel. We wound up giving him $99 and he promptly gave us a $25 Bass Pro Gift Card to use in the store.
At the time we were planning a 4000 mile, 3 1/2 week trip by car to visit friends and family up north and in the midwest. We needed one more place to spend the night on the way home from Missouri so we selected Pigeon Forge as a half way point and used our Bluegreen deal. We had been at timeshare presentations before and knew what to expect. We convinced ourselves thatwe would walk out of there with no deal.
Unfortunately what they offered us was a great deal. Especially great for us because we live in Central Florida and there are at least 6 resorts within 2 hours of our house, some of which we had day use access with only a phone call in advance. We could go to the resort, park in the resort parking lot, use the pool, use the hot tub, use the beach and all the other amenities at no cost. We loved it.
We wound up purchasing a minimal package of 7000 odd year points so we had 3500 points per year to use. We left knowing that that was all we would ever need. Or so we thought …..
We find out what an “owners’ update” is
Several days after we returned home to Central Florida, we were invited back to Pigeon Forge for a couple of free nights to have an owner’s update. So, after about a month, we hit the road again and returned to Tennessee. At the owners’ update, we learned a lot more about Bluegreen, what the plans for the future were, how to best use our points and a whole lot of other stuff. We also learned that we can do an owner’s update at any resort every 31 days and they will pay us to do them, usually a Visa Cash Card of $75 or $85. Needless to say, in the past 2 years we’ve done a lot of owner’s updates and always got paid. In addition, at this first update, we also learned that we didn’t have enough points. Soooo, by the time we were done, we had bought another 6000 annual points. That meant we now had 9500 points per year to use. Plenty for a couple of vacations if used judiciously. Back home we went.
Our first vacation
On November 16, 2011, we took our 1st Bluegreen vacation to St. Augustine, FL.
That’s only 2 hours from our house and unbelievably only cost us 700 points for 2 nights in a 900+ square foot 1 bedroom condo. Almost as big as my 1st 3 bedroom house. Turns out, St. Augustine is one of the best deals in town. It’s surrounded by golf courses and is about 20 minutes from historic St. Augustine.
That was the first of may Bluegreen vacations we have taken. To date, we have taken 27 Bluegreen vacations and never had trouble booking one. Aside from Florida, we have been to 2 resorts in TN, 2 resorts in SC and 1 resort in VA. In FL, we have stayed in the Keys, 2 resorts in Daytona Beach, 2 resorts in Ormond Beach, 1 resort in St. Augustine and 1 resort in St. Petersburg. We visited the resort in Branson, MO but didn’t stay there. I’ll cover all those in detail elsewhere in this website. This is why we love Bluegreen. I never had so many great vacations.
A little bit more about owners’ updates
One thing to remember about Bluegreen. They are in the business to sell timeshares. Every time you are sitting around a table hearing about Bluegreen stuff, it will eventually turn into a sales pitch. That person you’re talking to is on commission and would love to sell you more points. You don’t have to buy them. However, I will tell you this, I’ve never been to an owners’ update where I didn’t learn some valuable information. I will also tell you this, we now have 21,500 points and have reached the silver level. For real, that’s as high as we plan on going. At silver level, you get some perks that make it a nice place to be. Our daughter also bought some points that added to our total. That’s something to keep in mind. If you buy into Bluegreen and someone in your immediate family is interested in joining, get them under your contract. It’s the best way to go.