What does your phone get you these days? If you’re like most of us, it’s just a must-have device. But for some phone users, they actually become part of a club. That’s what’s happening with Samsung.
The Samsung members group offers innumerable perks for Samsung users. Like an all expenses paid trip to Europe, for example. Calgarian Aleem Jaffer was one of those hand-picked to attend the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain in February. This is his story.
Amazing VIP experience with Samsung in Barcelona
Who knew that by owning a Samsung device, you could experience the trip of a lifetime? Samsung chose four lucky members from the Samsung Members community in Canada, including myself for this trip. They sent an email out to some of the top members to ask if they were interested–and who wouldn’t be? We did short video interviews, then Samsung chose four of us members to attend Mobile World Congress, which was held along with a Samsung special event called Galaxy Unpacked 2018 in Barcelona, Spain. We all attended as guests of Samsung, and the company really went well above and beyond for this trip.It was really cool to meet 3 other members from Canada, as well as other members from the other countries including Poland, France, Spain, UAE, Turkey, Korea, and Mexico.
It was 100% fully luxurious.
I was in Barcelona for a total of four days, and on each day they had something planned for us. We got to meet Samsung’s leadership from various countries including some of the managers from Samsung HQ in Korea. All the Samsung Managers really made us feel valued, and that we deserved to be there, telling us we were the most active and top members from the community.
The entire time we were there, we felt like movie stars. We had a complete VIP treatment, even including a film crew following us around.
The royal treatment began as soon as we landed, since we had our own private driver picking us up in a limo to usher us to our hotel, the Sofia Hotel, which was a super elegant and gorgeous 5-star hotel. On arrival, we got gifts! I received a goody bag with some cool Samsung swag, such as a portable battery pack and Samsung Members hoodie!
Everywhere we went, we had a private luxury bus driving us around, all our meals were also in private reserved areas.
Samsung Members Galaxy Unpacked Day 1
On Day 1, we had a welcome dinner and an ice breaker where we got to meet with the other members from other countries and the Samsung management team.
After dinner we were told to go and put on something warm as we had a walking night tour of Barcelona. We met back in the lounge, where we were handed envelopes containing tickets to the FC Barcelona football game for that night! And they were some pretty kick ass seats too!!
FC Barcelona totally dominated Girona FC by 6-1 it was truly a remarkable experience as we were enjoying this game on our first night in Barcelona, with our new friends and with the other Samsung Members. Even while we were at the game, the film crew was filming us, and taking pictures so they did not miss a single moment of us experiencing this amazing trip. The culture at the game was amazing.
This was only day 1 of our trip and things were just starting. We couldn’t wait to see what other surprises they had planned for us.
Samsung Members Galaxy Unpacked Day 2
Day two started with an amazing breakfast buffet, followed by a tour of Barcelona. We had our own private tour guide, we got to see some of the famous buildings and heritage that Barcelona has to offer. It was nice to see the culture, and the beautiful architecture. With the film crew again in tow, we felt like real VIPs.
After the tour, we headed to the Museu Nacional D’art De Catalunya. There was a huge line up, but of course, we had VIP access, so we got right in. This is also where we had lunch in a private section just for us. It was such an amazing lunch while looking out at beautiful views of Barcelona.
After lunch, we were headed to Fira de Barcelona where the Samsung Galaxy Unpacked event was taking place, and once again there was a huge line to get in, but of course traveling VIP with Samsung meant no line. We arrived at least an hour before the event started so we got to come in through the back door and have a look backstage and behind the scenes.
Amazing behind the scenes access at Galaxy Unpacked
Being at Galaxy Unpacked for the very first time, was truly an amazing experience. This is something I have been interested in since the Galaxy S3 unpacked event but now I was here live!
The lights went down, and the music started playing, my heart was pumping so fast. Besides seeing the event live, we got to experience the Galaxy S9 hands on for the very first time. We also got to meet DJ Koh (President of Samsung Mobile and IT division) personally, shake his hand, and get a picture with him.
We also got to meet Dan from the Slow Mo Guys, and not to mention a lot of other famous YouTubers like Android Authority, and Phone Buff.
After the Galaxy Unpacked event we went to a nice little restaurant for tapas where we were also introduced to one of Samsung’s traditions. Every time they release a new phone or have something worth celebrating, they take shots of Soju, which is a Korean liquor. We really felt like we were part of the Samsung family. We got to try some Spanish wine too; the locally made sparkling Cava was my fave.
Samsung Members Galaxy Unpacked Day 3
Day three saw us headed to Sagrada Familia for a private tour with our own tour guide once again. It’s a Roman Catholic church that has been under construction for over 130 years. After the tour we had another private lunch at Barceloneta, a nice seafood restaurant.
Then it was on to the Mobile World Congress, one of the largest trade shows in the world. We only had a few hours here but overall, I am still glad we got to experience it. We spent a lot of time at the Samsung Booth, which was one of the larger booths. They had some cool VR experiences including alpine skiing. After we left MWC, we headed for our last dinner in Barcelona which also featured a flamenco show.
Samsung Members Galaxy Unpacked: saying goodbye
It was finally time to say farewell to the other Samsung Members and the Samsung managers. They gave us one last going away gift… a pair of Gear IconX 2018 wireless headphones! We got back in our luxurious limos, to be whisked back to the airport.
A few days after I got home, Samsung surprised us with another amazing gift: I unwrapped a package containing the new Galaxy S9+ before it had even been released! I have been using it for a few days now and I love the Slow Mo Camera, and the dual Dolby Atmos Speakers. It has an amazing camera, with dual aperture so it works like the human eye.
Overall, this was the best trip of my life. Samsung really did so much for us, and I have never been prouder to be a loyal Samsung Customer. Samsung is truly an amazing company, as they really reward their customers, and they they do it very generously. I could never see myself choosing any other brand for consumer electronics, especially after an experience much like this one.
Note from Erin: Special thanks to Aleem for sharing his amazing story of this truly VIP Samsung experience.