We purchased a 4-night stay for $200 during a December shopping trip to Bass Pro Shops in Macon, GA. We called and booked the Gatlinberg, TN resort location for Feb. 1 and paid an extra $50 to be at the resort rather than at a nearby partner hotel. We understood that there would be a timeshare presentation during the stay, and we were OK with that, even interested.
Between purchase date and arrival we had at least 3 phone calls and lots of mail. Each time they called, they wanted to confirm that we had valid ID, major credit card and at least $40,000 per year income, all of which we had.
On reservation day we drove the 365 miles to Gatlinberg and reported to the check-in building. There we were asked for IDs and credit cards, which we gave them. After a short disappearance into the back room, the girl came back to say that we could not stay because my license had expired. (l had just had a birthday and had forgotten that it was my year to renew.) I said I'd renew when we got home and fax a copy of the new license, but that was not acceptable. After much arguing back and forth, I asked for a refund and was given a phone number to call, where I was given a partial refund.
We were just flabbergasted to be treated in this way! My husband was so furious he didn't even want to look around Gatlinberg, so we got back in the car and drove 365 miles back home. That's 730 miles round trip, and we are both 70 years old!
We filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau, asked for a full refund and $100 in travel expenses, but Bluegreen refused this, saying we should have read the fine print better. Very cold,
very *** way to do business. Now I see from this and other sites that Bluegreen has a terrible reputation and that we were not the only ones to experience this particular indignity.
I suspect there was more to this than an expired license. Their last phone call, the day before our reservation, was to say that they had had flooding from frozen pipes in the new building and would have to move us to the older building, and would that be OK. Sure, I said, no problem. Could be they were just overbooked, in which case I'd have been glad to reschedule, but their handling of this matter was maddening. A month later, we are STILL furious. My advice is to stay away from this company.
Monetary Loss: $150.