How Much Does the Carefree Boat Club Cost?

Written by: Staff
Last Updated:  August 15, 2018

The Carefree Boat Club is a members-only boat club that enables its members to use their fleet of boats at any time.

With clubs across the United States, members can jump on any type of boat, anytime.

boats by mcaretaker, on Flickr
boats” (CC BY 2.0) by mcaretaker

How much does a Carefree Boat Club membership cost?

The cost of a Carefree Boat Club membership will greatly depend upon the type of membership you sign up for and the location you sign up at.  From what we researched, the average one-time initiation fee is about $5,500 to $3,500 and the monthly dues for the highest tiered membership will cost close to $350 per month, on average, to remain active at the club.  Some lower-tiered memberships, however, could be as little as $175 a month.  These memberships, unlike the full membership, would only allow you to reserve a boat on a weekday only, for example.

The official company says the costs will depend on the location, local costs, fleet, the membership options and the availability of the membership.

This Boating Magazine article talked about one couple who resided in Maryland, and at their local location, they paid $315 a month, plus fuel, to boat at one of the four waterways available.

One entry on claimed they paid $3,500 to join the club and another $350 a month to remain active.

According to one Yelp review for the Washington, D.C. location, a member said his final costs were $385 a month and $2,490 to join.

Carefree Boat Club membership overview

A membership offers unlimited usage of all boats, which, depending on the location, range from 23 to 29 feet long.  Most fleets include water sport boats, fishing boats, pontoons and sailboats, with most being less than three years old, but again, fleet choices will greatly depend on the location you sign up at.  According to the club, there is no limit to how many times you can boat; it’s truly unlimited, and again, depending on the exact geographical location, boats will be available year round.

All members receive free, unlimited training with a USCG certified captain, which includes navigating, docking, anchoring and safety strategies.  The average training session can last up to five hours.

The company covers the insurance, boat purchase, slip fees, maintenance, repairs, taxes, towing, coverage, and winterization.

Tips to know

As of 2017, the Carefree Boat Club has the following locations:  Marina Del Rey, CA, San Francisco Bay, CA, Sacramento, CA, Black Rock, CT, Clinton, CT, Milford, CT, Stamford, CT, Westport, CT, Allatoona Lake, GA, Lake Lanier, GA, The Landings, GA, Aventura, FL, Cape Coral, FL, Clermont, FL, Coconut Grove, FL, Crystal River, FL, Englewood, FL, Fort Lauderdale, FL, Fort Myers, FL, Fort Pierce, FL, Pompano Beach, FL, St. Augustine, FL, Tampa / St Pete, FL, Tarpon Springs, FL, Tierra Verde, FL, Chicago, IL, Annapolis, MD, Baltimore, MD, Deep Creek, MD, Middle River, MD, Danvers, MA, Red Bank, NJ, Lake Norman, NC, Charleston, SC, Lake Wylie, SC, Boone Lake, TN, Chattanooga, TN, South Holston Lake, TN/VA, Watauga Lake, TN, Clear Lake, TX, Lake Conroe, TX, Belmont Bay, VA, Hampton, VA, Occoquan, VA, Richmond, VA, Stafford, VA, Lake Anna, VA, Virginia Beach, VA, Williamsburg, VA, Anacortes, Bellevue, WA, Seattle, WA (Fishermen’s Terminal), Seattle, WA (Shilshole Bay Marina), Delavan, WI, Lake Geneva, WI, Milwaukee, WI, Washington, D.C., Lake Simcoe, Canada and Montréal, Canada.

On average, members can become active in as little as five to 14 days after joining.

To reserve a boat, you will simply use an online reservation system, which allows you to boat a boat up to six months in advance.  “Spur of the moment” reservations are also available when speaking with the on-site dock staff.  Company policy indicates that you’re only able to reserve up to four reservations at a time.

Restrictions will apply, but members may be able to keep a boat overnight.

How can I save money?

Depending on your location, you may be able to find a Groupon-like deal for first-time customers.  It doesn’t hurt to look before applying.

Many members, from what we read online, were able to negotiate their initiation fee and monthly dues.  If you feel the price is too high, don’t be afraid to ask for a lower rate.

The club does reward members who commit for more than one year.  If you know you want to stay as a member for longer than 12 months, then it may be wise to commit for up to five years, for instance.

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