Not sure if membership in Club Meliá is right for you? Here’s how the program works and what you should consider before making the investment.
Club Meliá membership is very much similar to a timeshare. The program takes a point based approach. And, offers a broad spectrum of options to book hotel reservations at Meliá properties worldwide.
Based upon your travel lifestyle, you build a plan that accommodates your time on the road. For example, I was presented with a package that includes 27,000 options. This projection was based on the amount of stays forecasted at Meliá hotels during the year.
Imagine you’re spending Monopoly money—Meliá has their own currency within the reward program—and the options (i.e. points) are replenished each year that you’re in the program (typically 5/7 years).
Once you’re in Club Meliá you can begin booking hotel stays at Meliá properties around the world. The points needed for your trip vary and are based on the destination chosen and the room type you’re booking. If you travel a lot, you’ll need to secure a package that has enough options to cover your stays over the course of the year.
Based on the package mentioned above with 27,000 options (i.e. points), the price to join Club Meliá was $17,200 USD based on a seven-year program. You can borrow, save, combine, or accelerate your options to create the blissful vacation you desire. So, my seven-year program could easily become a five-year program if borrowing points from the future.
Here’s what my scenario in Club Meliá might look like:
I’m off to Tanzania. I plan to stay at Meliá Zanzibar and for the time period looking to travel, it’ll cost me 16,000 points for a 5-night stay. Since I’ve already used some points from my package, 8,000 points remain.
I’ll need to pull 8,000 more points from the future (i.e. year seven) to make up the difference and pay for my stay at Zanzibar. This is how you borrow from the plan. The same concept applies should you decide to save, combine, or accelerate.
Offering this flexibility is what makes the program attractive.
- If you’re going to join Club Meliá, make sure you estimate the number of trips you’ll take to get the most out of the program.
- The price is
non-negotiable. They’ll act like it isn’t but it is. For example, my friend is in Club Meliá and when she bought in to the program it cost her approximately $15,000 USD for similar options.
- If you’re booking an all-inclusive hotel with your rewards, you are still responsible for the costs of food and drinks. This is normally a daily rate dependent upon location. You can opt-out of the all-inclusive amenities if you do not want to spend extra money in addition to what you already spent on the options.
- You need to book ahead. Popular destinations are often booked a year or more in advance.
- The presentation is very long so make sure you get something in return for your time such as hotel vouchers, free nights, or spa certificates. When all said and done, they want approximately two to four hours of your time to hear the sales pitch, have breakfast/lunch, watch videos, etc.
at the end of the day
The sales rep (with his handsome self) recommended that I not join the program given my best friend is a member. Why? Because I can benefit from her membership and reap the same reward without spending $17,200 to join the program. Now, this is assuming said friend has enough options to accommodate a trip for me here and there. Hey, I don’t mind tagging along.
You need to be a lover of Meliá properties to buy in to this program. It is a long-term commitment.