I’ve stayed at several Barceló hotels over the years and most have been pretty good. Here are some links to my reviews:
- Barceló Castillo Beach Resort, Fuerteventura, Canary Islands
- Barceló Bávaro Palace Deluxe Hotel – Dominican Republic
I’ve also been a member of their ‘my Barceló’ program, although the only benefit was a discount when booking at the Barceló website. I’ve written to them previously to ask why ‘my Barceló’ wasn’t a loyalty program, with points, free nights and status benefits. I’ve now noticed (despite the dozens of emails they send me, this was never mentioned) that the program has been updated to include status levels and benefits.
There are three levels:
- my Barceló – available to anyone
- my Barceló Intense – after two or three stays (some benefits only available after three stays)
- my Barceló Unique – after four stays
Barceló don’t define what constitutes a stay, but I assume that a stay can be one night or two weeks. That’s odd as Barceló run city hotels as well as resorts – so if I stay four separate nights in a city hotel (such as Prague EUR68 per night), I’ll gain Unique status, but if I stay two weeks at the Bavaro Palace Deluxe (US$7000) I’ll still be at the basic level.
Only stays booked direct through Barceló qualify. However, they don’t say what happens if you are already at ‘Unique’ status and then arrive as part of a package – I suspect they’ll refuse the benefits.
The following table shows the benefits:
There doesn’t appear to be any points system whereby you can earn free nights.
The worst part of the program is that they haven’t looked at previous stays:
Your my Barceló level is based on stays you have enjoyed that were booked through Barcelo.com and/or the Call Centre, over a period of 24 months from 26 March 2015 (all bookings made before this date are not used when calculating the level).
I wrote to Barceló:
I notice that you have added status levels to the my Barcelo program but haven’t recorded stays prior to March 2015. I’ve been a regular visitor to Barcelo hotels for years and I’m disappointed that you can’t find my stays and set my status accordingly. For example, I stayed in Fuerteventura Club Premium last year. The year before in Dominican Republic in Club Premium.
They replied pretty quickly:
You can import bookings made exclusively at Barcelo.com or through our Customer Service Call Centre from the last 12 months. To import the booking to your my Barceló account, first access my Barceló with your email and password, then go to “Bookings” and add the necessary booking information. Remember, the information must be identical to that shown on your Booking Voucher (including spaces, characters, upper case, etc.) for you to be able to search for and add the booking to your account.
My last two bookings are shown but the Barceló website shows this message:
You are only 2 stays away from upgrading to the my Barceló Intense level.
So neither of those stays qualify. I’m going to write to them again and ask that they at least upgrade me to the mid-tier level.
My opinion is that this is a poorly thought out loyalty program that should be revised. However, I don’t expect this to happen any time soon as the entire Barceló online presence has always been a bit of a mess, with discounts hard to find and the search facility a mess. Barceló is still a family-run concern and I suspect that the website and the loyalty program are managed by a family member.