PROS / You have a 24-hour grace period after booking a vacation to cancel with no penalty.
CONS / If you roll over points, you must use them within two years or you forfeit them.
VERDICT / Bluegreen Resorts gives you several resorts from which to choose for your home resort when you buy into its vacation club. There are many extra fees that are tacked onto your annual dues, though, and those dues are expected to increase each year.
When you choose a home resort at Bluegreen Resorts, you can pick your favorite type of vacation destination and you are likely to find a place that fits your needs. The travel club has more than 60 resorts in numerous areas, such as Arizona, Nevada, Colorado, Missouri, California, Hawaii, the Bahamas and Aruba. Just as with the best vacation clubs, Bluegreen offers you a membership to an exchange group – RCI – so you can trade your points to stay at resorts outside of the Bluegreen Resorts network. The fees you have pay to use Bluegreen, though, add up quickly.
If you choose to trade your points or week in through RCI, you will pay the highest exchange fee we’ve seen compared to all of the vacation clubs we’ve reviewed. However, if you choose to bank your points to use the following year, you will pay the lowest fee we’ve seen compared to even the best timeshare resorts we’ve reviewed that also charge a fee. Keep in mind that if you bank your points to use at a later date, you will need to use them within two years or you forfeit those points. The fees continue to stack up with Bluegreen Resorts. If you cancel a reservation, you will pay at least $50 for that cancellation, unless you do it within 24 hours of booking, in which case you suffer no penalty. You do have the option of paying for a point protection program that will protect you from cancellation fees, but that will cost you $39.95. The prices for various fees can change year to year.
Bluegreen Resorts offers its new vacation club members a free year of access to its travelers’ plus team. This team helps get you ready for your vacation – from helping you book flights and car rentals to helping with itineraries and finding cruise packages.
The RCI membership unlocks access to the rest of the world with its thousands of resorts. Even if you stay within Bluegreen Resorts network, though, you can travel to a number of states and explore beachfront properties, mountain resorts, lakes, the countryside, islands and cityscapes.
Although everyone we spoke with at Bluegreen Resorts was friendly, we weren’t able to easily extract information about joining the vacation club from the staff. If you want to find out how much it costs to invest in the vacation club, you will need to buy a promotional stay at a resort first and then attend a two-hour presentation. There have been many complaints from consumers over the years, and very few of the issues that we found have been resolved.
Bluegreen Resorts offers a large selection of vacation spots, so you will have plenty of places from which to choose to stay and play. The vacation club also gives you access to exchange group RCI, so you can travel the world. Bluegreen wasn’t named the best timeshare company, though, because of its many fees, the forfeiture of points if you bank them for more than two years and its lack of transparency.