What to avoid on holiday

Hello, I’m Raana, one of the solicitors in JMW’s holiday claims team.  

Before taking a trip away, most people look forward to the time they’re about to spend in a new country, and make plans about what to do to make the most of their holiday.  

As part of that planning, you should take a little time to consider any precautions you might need to take in order to stay safe and prevent against possible accidents. 

My colleagues and I see many individuals who have suffered an injury or illness as the result of an accident abroad, and I want to spend a few minutes talking to you about how you could reduce your chances of that happening to you.  

A lot of our clients come to us because they’ve suffered food poisoning during an all inclusive trip.  There are a number of reasons as to why someone may have suffered food poisoning when they’re away.  It could be down to unsafe water being consumed, eating food that has been left out longer than it should be, or that has been prepared in an unhygienic or unsanitary manner.  

Whilst in the UK, business owners dealing with food are obliged to put food safety management procedures in place to ensure food is produced and vended in a sanitary condition, the same rules do not apply in other countries.  What’s more, tour operators are only under obligation to make sure that local standards are enforced in hotels and hotel complexes.  

As standards of food management differ from country to country, it’s best to follow certain rules of thumb;

  • Don’t drink any water unless bottled.  
  • Don’t eat food which has been left out longer than 90 minutes.  
  • Don’t eat reheated/recooked food.  

Slips and trips are another area where there’s cause for complaint abroad.  We particularly deal with clients who have fallen over near the pool area or in the grounds of their hotel complex, or in their hotel bathrooms.  Leaking water, or water that has been allowed to pool, is generally to blame here.  It’s not your place to clean up after the other guests at your hotel; you are on holiday after all!  But there are precatious you can take to cut down on your chances of being injured in this way:

  • Always make sure to take appropriate care near the pool; don’t run, and don’t leave children unsupervised.  
  • Make sure you wear appropriate footwear around the pool and on slippery surfaces.  
  • Be careful in areas where water may be likely to collect; around bathrooms, near the pool, during times when the hotel staff are cleaning, etc., and flag up any spilled water you might have noticed.  
  • Report any problems you’ve had with damaged fixtures in your room to the hotel staff, making sure that they get repaired.  If they aren’t repaired to your satisfaction, you could ask to be moved.  

You may be planning on using a car when you’re abroad, as a handy way of getting around and accessing more of your resort.  But road traffic accidents can happen abroad just as easily as they can in the UK. We’ve dealt with the clients to prove it!   

Although there’s no easy fix for other peoples’ driving, thinking ahead if you or a loved one is driving, can help you stay out of trouble on the roads.:

  • Map out your travel plans before you set out, to avoid confusion and panic whilst you’re on the road.  
  • Remember that road laws differ from country to country.  It’s sensible to read up on your host country’s equivalent of the highway code before you go so that you don’t accidentally violate a law and are able to avoid problems.  
  • Driving styles and attitudes also differ from country to country, so it may be wise to spend your first couple of trips out observing other drivers’ behaviour so you know how to react.  
  • And obviously…make sure you’re driving on the right side of the road!  

Sadly, nothing is entirely accident proof, but hopefully these tips have served as a reminder of what to do when you’re abroad to cut down on the chances of being involved in an accident.  If you’re in doubt as to whether something should be the way it is in your hotel, don’t be afraid to raise the issue with hotel staff and get them to put it right.  After all, you might be able to prevent more than just you or loved ones suffering an accident! 

If you are unfortunate enough to be involved in an accident, or suffer an illness whilst abroad, the holiday team and I are here to help.  

You can get in touch with us on 0800 054 6570.  

You can visit our website; www.jmw.co.uk 

Or you can find us on social media.  We’re on Twitter and Facebook.  

We’re happy to answer any questions you may have, and help you start a claim.  

Thanks for watching!

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