Freedom boat club

Joda

Member
Jan 3, 2016
870
266
Walnut, ca
Name
Jonathan c
Boat
one day
does anyone have experience with this boat club?

I like the offerings and good for me to determine if i do want to own a boat in the future.

Only concern is the ability to book the boat that I want during the summer. anyone with experience of this?

Any advice is appreciated.

thanks,
 
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Azarkon

I Should Upgrade My Account
Aug 28, 2015
1,718
1,329
36
California
Name
Joe
Boat
N/A
They take care of:

* Buying the boat
* Storing the boat
* Moving the boat
* Cleaning the boat
* Maintaining the boat
* Fixing the boat
* Upgrading the boat
* Paying the insurance for the boat
* Paying the property tax for the boat
* Getting the boat on the water
* Selling the boat

All you do is use it.

So I wouldn't say it's a way to determine whether you want to own a boat in the future but, rather, a way to use a boat without owning it. That's the benefit.

In terms of whether you can get the boat you want for the summer, I think the answer is pretty obvious - it's a time share program, so you'll be sharing its time with others. This works for people who don't go out every weekend, or who are open to going out during the week. It doesn't work for people who want an exact boat to be available to them whenever they want.

Personally, I think companies like them are a natural development, because the all or none approach to boats has never made much sense to me. So I'm not going to talk shit about it the way I see a lot of boat owners do in other communities, because it should be an option. But I will say, you should know what you're getting into, as it's not a similar experience to owning a boat.
 
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ocsleeper

Member
May 1, 2008
559
388
Anaheim
Name
Ricky
Boat
Cobia 220 DC
If you are trying to see if you want to own a boat in the future, there are cheaper ways to go about it. The boat club is a great concept for the right type of people only. It is a big chunk of change on the initial membership buyin. For that much, I would just take that $ and buy a cheaper starter boat and see how much you like boating and all that goes with it.
 
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Carl

Bridesmaid,,,,,,,Again
Nov 29, 2004
20,774
4,779
54
San Diego
Name
Carl
Boat
everyone elses
Yah but for 4k which is what i last heard the buy in was you're not going to get but an aluminum skiff with a crappy motor. FBC has nice boats at locations around the country in addition to SoCal.... Fly to Florida jump on a boat, take it out.

No I'm not affiliated. Give them a call and arrange to kick the tires and ckeck out the boats. They have a wide variety in SD.
 
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Joda

Member
Jan 3, 2016
870
266
Walnut, ca
Name
Jonathan c
Boat
one day
Yah but for 4k which is what i last heard the buy in was you're not going to get but an aluminum skiff with a crappy motor. FBC has nice boats at locations around the country in addition to SoCal.... Fly to Florida jump on a boat, take it out.

No I'm not affiliated. Give them a call and arrange to kick the tires and ckeck out the boats. They have a wide variety in SD.

Are you in the club?

The concerns I have are availability and current restriction that limits maximum range to Catalina for fishing.
 
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Carl

Bridesmaid,,,,,,,Again
Nov 29, 2004
20,774
4,779
54
San Diego
Name
Carl
Boat
everyone elses
Are you in the club?

The concerns I have are availability and currently only allowed to go to Catalina for fishing.
No.

I'm pretty familiar with the SD operation particularly the Mission Bay location. There is also one in SD Bay.

I know less about other locations.

I haven't heard any members with a major gripe about availibility here. I've had hundreds if not thousands of interactions with their members. Not to say there haven't been instances where they couldn't get a particular boat. It does happen on occassion. I've seen their fleet grow as membership grows...

By all means seek input from members at the location you're looking to join as your primary..

If I wasn't in the broke loser tax bracket I would probably join.
 
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Joda

Member
Jan 3, 2016
870
266
Walnut, ca
Name
Jonathan c
Boat
one day
No.

I'm pretty familiar with the SD operation particularly the Mission Bay location. There is also one in SD Bay.

I know less about other locations.

I haven't heard any members with a major gripe about availibility here. I've had hundreds if not thousands of interactions with their members. Not to say there haven't been instances where they couldn't get a particular boat. It does happen on occassion. I've seen their fleet grow as membership grows...

By all means seek input from members at the location you're looking to join as your primary..

If I wasn't in the broke loser tax bracket I would probably join.
Thanks carl, that's good to hear about the members you met have not had too much concern for the availability.

I started this thread hoping a member will be on bd or a bder that knows a member can shed more details.

Thanks for your input!
 
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ocsleeper

Member
May 1, 2008
559
388
Anaheim
Name
Ricky
Boat
Cobia 220 DC
I actually bought my boat from Freedom last year and had a chance to talk to Dan who runs the operation. Dan is a super cool guy and it seems as though he runs a very well club down there. I dont want to say what he charges as you should contact them yourselves but the number he gave me was more than $4k.

If you do the math, this would not be a very good investment unless you are planning on being a member for a very long time. The upfront and monthly cost is non refundable and lost if you ever decide to no longer be part of the club. This is why you really need to think hard about what you want and your level of commitment.

The boat club concept is a great thing for guys who have flexible schedule, extra disposible income, and want to always have newer boats to play with without having to do all the maintenance.

Another thing you might want to consider is do what I did and bought one of their boats as they upgrade to newer ones. I was able to get a smoking deal on my rig and they were very transparent about everything.
 
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ocsleeper

Member
May 1, 2008
559
388
Anaheim
Name
Ricky
Boat
Cobia 220 DC
Oh a few more things. I would advice you to ask them to show you their booking schedules for last year as this would give you an idea to as how busy they are.

When I spoke to Dan last year, he had mentioned that he liked to have specific ratio of members to boat. I forgot what that was but it seemed reasonable and they would buy more boats with increase in membership so there wouldnt be much of a back log for peak season.
 
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Joda

Member
Jan 3, 2016
870
266
Walnut, ca
Name
Jonathan c
Boat
one day
Oh a few more things. I would advice you to ask them to show you their booking schedules for last year as this would give you an idea to as how busy they are.

When I spoke to Dan last year, he had mentioned that he liked to have specific ratio of members to boat. I forgot what that was but it seemed reasonable and they would buy more boats with increase in membership so there wouldnt be much of a back log for peak season.

They said approximately 8-10 members per boat, but there's only 1 Parker 2 cc boats, rest are not really meant for fishing.

I would definitely ask for that schedule book.

Thanks for the idea.
 
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Carl

Bridesmaid,,,,,,,Again
Nov 29, 2004
20,774
4,779
54
San Diego
Name
Carl
Boat
everyone elses
Ask Dan about splitting a membership with a friend. I know a couple guys who went that route.
 
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Jul 7, 2016
4
2
30
Long beach
Name
Justin Buckley
Boat
Kayak
I have been a member of the Huntington harbor location for 6 months so I can't speak for peak season. I have never had a problem reserving a boat as long as I have scheduled a few weeks in advance. The club requires all locations to have a 10 to 1 boat to member ratio, but Andrew is trying to keep it closer to 7 to1. The only true down fall about the club to me is that you can't leave the dock until first light and you have to have the boat returned before the fuel dock closes. 6:00 pm on the weekends in the summer.
 
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djam

Almost A Member
  • Jun 2, 2008
    177
    148
    Irvine
    Name
    Dave
    Boat
    Parker 2320 (Terabite)
    I was part of a different boat club here in So Cal for 3 years before I finally bought my own boat, as mentioned if you have a flexible schedule it is a pretty great deal. I'm probably out of pocket double the monthly costs of a club, plus maintenance. I learned a lot and helped me finally decide on the boat I purchased. I fished almost every week so it was a great deal. The daylight thing is a bit of a pain, but that is an insurance issue for most rental clubs.
     
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    Joda

    Member
    Jan 3, 2016
    870
    266
    Walnut, ca
    Name
    Jonathan c
    Boat
    one day
    I have been a member of the Huntington harbor location for 6 months so I can't speak for peak season. I have never had a problem reserving a boat as long as I have scheduled a few weeks in advance. The club requires all locations to have a 10 to 1 boat to member ratio, but Andrew is trying to keep it closer to 7 to1. The only true down fall about the club to me is that you can't leave the dock until first light and you have to have the boat returned before the fuel dock closes. 6:00 pm on the weekends in the summer.

    Thanks Justin, your advice is very helpful!

    I always thought you can book back to back to do overnights? Is the HB location unable to do that?
     
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    Joda

    Member
    Jan 3, 2016
    870
    266
    Walnut, ca
    Name
    Jonathan c
    Boat
    one day
    I was part of a different boat club here in So Cal for 3 years before I finally bought my own boat, as mentioned if you have a flexible schedule it is a pretty great deal. I'm probably out of pocket double the monthly costs of a club, plus maintenance. I learned a lot and helped me finally decide on the boat I purchased. I fished almost every week so it was a great deal. The daylight thing is a bit of a pain, but that is an insurance issue for most rental clubs.

    So right now with your own boat it's 2x the cost of the club? What's the pro in that? More freedom than freedom club? :)
     
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    Century92530

    Newbie
    Feb 19, 2017
    48
    24
    30
    Lake Elsinore
    Name
    Anthony
    Boat
    Century 2200 WAC "Aliison Jean"
    Thanks Justin, your advice is very helpful!

    I always thought you can book back to back to do overnights? Is the HB location unable to do that?
    None of their locations allow overnight rentals. All boats have to be used during daylight only. That was a big deciding factor for me when I was considering joining.
     
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