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[infox] Placing a complaint while on holiday in Catalonia

Barcelona, Spain
Destination Expert
for Barcelona, Catalonia
Level Contributor
10,799 posts
[infox] Placing a complaint while on holiday in Catalonia


If you happen to be visiting Catalonia and have a complaint to make against any establishment (ie.hotel,restaurant) or service (ie.taxi,bus) you have several ways of conveying it. Please DO NOT let it go, and CLAIM your rights. This way not only your rights are preserved but you also help everybody else, fellow visitors and locals alike, to enhance the level of service and professionalism our companies. No complaints = no reason to aim higher!

>> CITIZENS ASSISTANCE TELEPHONE (Generalitat de Catalunya, government of Catalonia)

012 (from within Catalonia)

+34 902 400 012 (from abroad)


The first (and easiest) step for everybody is trying to reason with the establishment/service; you'll often find that a civilized exchange of words with the manager will easily solve the situation.

Yet when things don't work out, the first step is to place a complaint on the spot. All hotels and restaurants in Catalonia HAVE to have a "Llibre de Reclamacions" (complaints' book) and HAVE to make it available to customers should they decide to complaint. The book is not such, it's a form instead. It has three colour copies, one is given to the establishment, another one should be presented to either A or B (see below) and the third one is for you. I've known of some establishments saying they have no book or not willing to provide it. That's completely silly on their part because they're only making things worse, regardless whether your complaint had any basis or not, not providing access to the book they also incur in yet another 'falta administrativa' (roughly translated as 'administrative offense' which might end up with an added penalty for the establishment). Don't hesitate to seek assistance from any police officer (or call 112).

Should you not wish to quarrel with an uncooperative manager, you can simply place the complaint directly in the tourism office -probably easier for a tourist as advice can be sought there too. Remember you need to add any document that sustains your complaint (ie. invoice, emails, tickets, etc.)

A >> Any major tourism office: http://bit.ly/1lDIhra -main tourism offices in Catalonia. In Barcelona: Palau Robert in Passeig de Gràcia, in front of La Pedrera; in Plaça Catalunya, in front of El Corte Inglés department store and also at the airport. They're open all day long from Mon to Sat and Sun until 2:30pm.

B >> Oficina Catalana de Consum (Catalan Consumer Office) -main office: Carrer de Pamplona, 113 in Barcelona - Tel.+34 935 516 666 website: http://www.consum.cat/ -unfortunately the English version is rather poor in contents! Either use Google Translate on the Catalan one or just visit their office if you're in Barcelona. The page you want is: consum.cat/temes_de_consum/…index.html

The tourism offices channel the complaints to the appropriate government department/agency depending on the type of complaint. Once the complaint is resolved, the complainant should receive the answer at his address -even if it's abroad. Note I said 'should' because unfortunately as any other public service elsewhere in the world, complaints do not always find their way to a resolution -you catch my drift, don't you? ;)

And for those picky ones with free time in their hands: http://www.consum.cat/doc/doc_64724414_1.pdf




To file a complaint or report, the Metropolitan Taxi Institute (IMT) will require that the user provide specific information on the taxi in which the service object of the complaint was given. At the end of a route, always ask the taxi driver for a receipt with the following information: taxi driver information, the license number, national tax identification number, the vehicle plate number, the price of the route, the date of service, the driver’s signature.



That's channelled via the Police. Catalonia's police are called "Mossos d'Esquadra" (a.k.a. 'mossos') and all major cities also have their own city police, in case of Barcelona is called "Guàrdia Urbana" (bcn.cat/guardiaurbana/en/quefem_serveis.html…). Easiest is to call 112 and you'll be instructed where to go/what to do. Pic 'mossos': www.martorell.cat/imgs/mossos-patrullant.jpg, pic Guàrdia Urbana: …lavanguardia.com/2013/09/26/Les-histories-m…

Finally, please help addressing the wrongs by not staying quiet when you feel you're being taking for a ride!

PS: ... if you don't take action when you should, you don't have the right to go moaning about the bad service you received when you visited us!

Barcelona, Spain
Level Contributor
405 posts
16 reviews
1. Re: [infox] Placing a complaint while on holiday in Catalonia

Excellent post!!! I work at the airport and we see people complaining EVERY DAY..... Some tourists just say " Oh, it doesn't matter, I'm going back home, no need to make a complaint...", but we always make them do it .

Malaga, Spain
Level Contributor
72,748 posts
3,830 reviews
2. Re: [infox] Placing a complaint while on holiday in Catalonia


I suggest telling the taxi driver when you enter the taxi that you will need a receipt. Many business travelers ask for this now so that their company can reimburse them because the taxi cost is a legitimate business expense. When you tell this to the taxi driver, he will know not to do anything improper because with the receipt the authorities can go after him easily if he tries to give you the run around.

Tarragona, Spain
Level Contributor
388 posts
3. Re: [infox] Placing a complaint while on holiday in Catalonia

The post is excellent in theory.

It unfortunately tells us nothing about:

i) How ready the offending establishment is likely to be to produce this book(let)

ii) What remedy (if any) the authorities are likely to offer when they eventually respond.Much, much, much, much later if you have overcome the problems which I mention above.

No I'm not (quite) saying "don't waste your time trying it."

But I am certainly saying "Don't hold your breath."

Or perhaps locals and/ or (regular) visitors can write in dispel my extreme scepticism about this as a meaningful measure for tourists with problems

Level Contributor
1 post
3 reviews
4. Re: [infox] Placing a complaint while on holiday in Catalonia

This is very helpful - thank you.

I had an interesting :-) experience today in Barcelona with a bike rental firm which rented me an electric quad bike with a broken axle and then tried to get me to pay for the damage when I returned it, despite the clerk admitting that he had seen that the pedals didn't work from the start: "it would cost €250 to fix this axle but we'll let you off with just keeping your €100 deposit. Oh, what's that, you want a copy of the statutory complaints form? In that case the €100 offer is no longer on the table, it'll be €250." So in practice they charged me €150 for making a complaint.

5. Re: [infox] Placing a complaint while on holiday in Catalonia

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