I have a chlorine generator. I add rock salt to the pool until the saline level reaches between 2700 - 3400 ppm. The generator is a flow through device which does it's magic turning salt into chlorine temporarily. The water is slightly salty to the taste, but is so nice to the skin compared to the harshness of chlorine. Opening your eyes isn't a problem either in the water.
I don't know what it cost's to operate this gadget, but I think it's much cheaper than the $100.00 plus a year to buy the 3" tablets that I used to use.
The only maintenance is adding salt when the water evaporates making me add more fresh water and when it rains a lot over flowing the salt water onto the deck.
As far as the water getting on the deck and rusting things, the chlorine was pretty good at eating metal too, so I don't see how this could be any more of a problem with salt.
I love my system and would never go back to chlorine.