My wife and I would like to take a moment to tell you how much we appreciate Capt. Lee of the Bradenton Club. He worked with us prior to getting on the water….was with us on our first trip out…… and has joined us as we ventured into the Anna Maria Sound and inter-coastal waterway of Sarasota Bay. He is super friendly, very knowledgeable and most encouraging. He is the ‘face’ of Freedom Boat Club and represents the club in an exceptional manner.
~ Doug & Bets Bulcher
Always have a wonderful experience!
The entire crew is always top notch. Ready with a helping hand, a warm smile, and helpful information about places to boat to.
Joining the boat club was one of our better decisions.
~ Brian Henney
Cape Haze Florida
My wife and I have been members for 6 seasons and are very happy with the outstanding treatment of the members. They consistently work at exceeding your expectations.
Every time we take a boat out from our home base of Sarasota FL or do a reciprocal reservation at the Lake St. Clair MI location, they do their best to get you on the boat you want to be on. The reciprocal reservation process has worked very well for us. All of the locations we have experienced are very helpful in getting your group and items on the boat and discussing anything you need to know about the boat or waters you’re about to travel on.
It’s comforting knowing you’re on a newer well maintained boat. We have not experienced any boating troubles over the 6 years as compared to friends that own boats and have missed boating seasons because they own the maintenance issues.
We have all the fun and none of the worries!
~ John Laybourn
We couldn’t be happier with our Freedom Boat Club membership. After years of owning a boat I’m just sorry we didn’t join earlier! To be able to arrive at the dock and step onto a well maintained and ready boat then step off and leave saves so much time and energy. Your dockmasters are knowledgeable, friendly, hardworking and polite. They make every effort to make sure everything is right and ready.
An original concern before joining was the condition and availability of the boats. This has not been a problem and we love that you have no boat older than 3 years.
I would and have recommended Freedom Boat Club to anyone interested in boating.
~ Marilyn Ziegler
My Initial concern with joining Freedom Boat Club was that I would not like the condition of the boats (not being kept up). I couldn’t be more wrong. Maintenance has never been an issue while boating with the club. I have never had a boat break down. I was also scared that I would not be able to get a boat when I wanted one. The guys on the docks have always been able to get me a boat, even when no reservation was made.
I have always enjoyed using the boats. It’s been a great summer with many great day trips.
I was really surprised that I am able to take my dog (a member of my family) on any of the boats.. He has been boating with me since he was 8-weeks-old and is now a regular on the boats. Alex at the Englewood club knows to take his hat off when he sees my dog coming. For some reason, he barks at Alex when he is wearing a hat. lol…
Best feature of the club is the Freedom… I work full time and don’t have time to deal with trailering and maintenance of owning a boat.
If contacted (by a prospective member) I would explain the benefits of membership, the ease of usage and the convenience of walking away after a day or boating and not having to worry about cleaning, trailing, maintenance.
~ Sox Youngblood
Punta Gorda, FL
I have now one summer under my belt. I am exceptionally pleased that all of the hype surrounding the promotional material, and sales presentations has become a real, positive, experience.
I have used the club one, or two weekdays per week…weather permitting.! I have used the reciprocal reservation several times.
~ Captain Ron Danko
We are so glad we joined Freedom Boat Club.
I knew I loved boating but did not have the time, and energy to own a boat again. For us, FBC was the perfect solution. Right away we began boating as often as we like and had the option to go out on the St John’s River or the intracoastal. Additionally, we incorporated FBC into our vacations and get to keep boating when we travel. But what is most amazing to me is that after two years as I have become more experienced and comfortable our options became unlimited. My wife and I vacationed with friends by boat to the Hammock Beach Resort this summer and had an incredible adventure. I am now deep sea fishing 20 miles off shore, which is something I never dreamed I would do and last week going to the Jags game by boat was truly a unique experience like no other.
The money spent on FBC is some of the best money I have ever spent. It has gone towards memories and experiences that my family and I have always dreamed of as well as new adventures to be excited about each week. It has exceeded all of our expectations.
~ Tim Bradley
St. Augustine, FL
A quick note to let you know we just sailed one of the new Catalina’s here with Capt. Bill “showing us the ropes – (lines).” WOW. What a neat boat to sail. I’m sure they will be in great demand as others begin to use them. We would like to thank you for placing 2 of them here as we have great sailing conditions on the wide Peace River & Charlotte Harbor — without the need to navigate and sail out in the Gulf.
Joining the FBC has been one of our best decisions ever!
~ Mike & Ann Polcer
Punta Gorda, FL
Dear Freedom Boat Club,
I think it is absolutely fantastic the way Freedom Boat Club volunteers their boats for charities like the Freedom Waters Foundation.
My son and I volunteered our time with Dustin Tidwell this past Sunday and it was wonderful to help these young girls experience catching fish, being on the water and just getting out of their “world” for a little bit. I could see in their faces and pictures are evident, that this was a huge event for all that participated. To me, the water is a place that brings a sense of calm and peace; and for these girls not only for the day but hopefully they acquired a life time of memories. Teaching these girls to fish and to respect the sea and its inhabitants was a moving experience for me and I look forward to volunteering my time for outings in the future.
Thank you very much for allowing us to use your boats and bring smiles to these girls faces. As I said, and I can’t overstate the personal satisfaction I got by sharing my knowledge with them on the water.
You boats made it all possible and I wanted to thank you again.
~ Roger Hill Jr. / Broker Associate
We moved from Colorado last year with every intention of purchasing a boat for recreational use and fishing. I shopped around and the vessels that I liked were pricing out about 50-75K. I wanted something with center console for fishing. I also looked into boat storage and dock space so we could keep the boat in or near the water. The average cost was about $8-10 LF of boat length.
I also calculated the insurance and estimated yearly maintenance and added for equipment needed, electronics, fish finder, life jackets, and other misc things. While my attention was diverted to boat shopping we also needed to purchase a home at the same time. So I really wanted a house with a boat dock for my potential new boat purchase. However, boat dock homes are very expensive and rare to find. I also got a jolt or wake up call from the insurance company on rates since living right on the water would be considered a high risk for rising water and storms.
Thankfully during our search for both a home and boat we met Eric, he was our real estate agent, a retired state policeman that had just moved down to Florida a year prior from New York. Eric was a previous boat owner and knew a few things about boat ownership. When he heard I wanted to buy a boat he took me straight to the Freedom Boat Club in Bradenton where I met Vince. After about a ten minute conversation with Vince we were convinced it was an absolute no-brainer to join the club..We would save thousands of dollars and get a huge selection of boats at our disposal. If we had purchased the boat I wanted we would have been limited to just that boat alone. The Freedom Club gives us access to a many types of boats. We can enjoy an inshore center console vessel perfect for fishing the shadow waters, or offshore boat for going into the deeper water. But, we have access to other boats too; deck boats for cruising the bay while enjoying the sun and beautiful Sarasota water and beaches. We actually use the deck boats more now because since our move to Florida our visiting friends and family like to go to the beaches. It’s nice to enjoy the less crowded beach areas and sandbars with a deck boat. We no longer stake out a spot on the crowded beach, drag and setup tent, beach chairs, ect..
If having access to many different boats wasn’t enough, we actually saved thousands of dollars by joining the club. We no longer needed to put down 25K in cash and finance about 40K for the new boat we wanted. We also didn’t need a home with boat dock. We were able to find a home with a swimming pool located nearby in a no flood zone which saves us a ton of money on annual insurance premiums. If you don’t buy a home with a dock just plan on adding about $200-250 per month to store your boat in the water at one of the local marinas.
Now, for the real savings..We all buy new things and know how things depreciate. I found out that if I would have made the mistake of buying a new boat I could have loss over 10-15K just in the title transfer. Even if the boat never touched the water. That’s kind of ridiculous but that’s how it works. Just go and look at new boats and slightly used new boats for sale. You basically throw over 10K away on a purchase. That’s just for a boat around 20-25 feet. I don’t even want to imagine a larger boat purchase.
Last and best part of the club. No maintenance and almost everything you need in equipment is already included in the membership…That’s right ! No maintenance. That means no oil, no need to purchase life jackets, fish finder, anchors, NO CLEANING, ect. It’s like having a valet boat service on the dock. Your boat is waiting at the dock when you arrive and when you return in after a day of fun just park the boat back in the slip and pay for only the gas used. Simply a no-brainer.. Another perk is a few other members have helped me locate a couple fishing holes for grouper….Boating and fishing solved..
We didn’t even realize anything like Freedom Boat Club existed. We love the club. We actually joined prior to purchasing our home. Man’s got to have his priorities in order.
~ Martin Allred, FBC Member since 7/2014