YARMOUTH, Maine — Boating clubs are a relatively new idea and they are growing in popularity.  The Freedom Boat Club of Maine is a franchise of a national company which has 190 locations around the world.

"The whole concept is maintenance-free, hassle-free boating is more affordable than owning your own boat," said Ed Bernard. 

The concept is simple,  People pay an initiation ($5900) and monthly ($350) fee. They then may take boats out and pay only the cost of gas.

Michael Foley of Westbrook says it's just right for he and his young family. He says boat owners tell him that being in the boat club makes financial sense.

"They say it makes perfect sense with all the money they spend in winterizing, ongoing maintenance, slips, towing and insurance.  It adds up very fast and I know people who probably spend more annually just to maintain their boats."

The group does have various types of plans for families and those who want to take boats out just during the week.

Members can use boats at any Freedom Boat Club location. For example, there are dozens of locations in Florida.