Month: April 2021

When Can I Travel on a Package Holiday to Tunisia?

There is currently much excitement and anticipation in the travel industry as recent government announcements suggest that travel restrictions are likely to be lifted on a gradual basis during summer 2021.

Tunisia is a very popular holiday destination for UK holidaymakers with many opting to stay at all-inclusive hotels in recent years. Famous for its markets, its culture and its mosques and great weather, it is easy to see why holidays to Tunisia are so appealing to those living in the UK.

We therefore expect to see package holidays to popular resorts like Port El Kantaoui, Sousse, Monastir, Skanes, Hammamet and Yasmine Hammamet gradually resuming during 2021.

Of course, as we have seen all too often over the last 12 months, government plans and government guidance can change instantly, and with concerns over new Covid-19 variants appearing across the world, any optimism has to be cautious.

Are there problems with Holiday Illness in Tunisia?

Simpson Millar’s holiday claims experts have secured compensation for many holidaymakers that have stayed at all-inclusive hotels in Tunisia over recent years.

But as long as the tour operators that provide the holidays and their hotel suppliers take hygiene and food safety issues seriously, and put steps in place to ensure that food in appropriately sourced, stored, prepared and served, then there should be no more risk of travelling to Tunisia than any other destination in terms of being at risk of contracting illness causing bugs like salmonella, E.coli or Campylobacter.

The worldwide Covid-19 pandemic has focussed the minds of the world on the importance of good personal hygiene, the importance of regular hand washing, the benefits of using antibacterial gels and the advantages of thoroughly and regularly cleaning surfaces and equipment.

These are things that can help to reduce and prevent the spread not only of Covid-19, but also other illness causing bugs. It’s therefore hoped that this raised level of awareness will assist not only in controlling and limiting Covid-19, but the spread of other illness causing pathogens.

The fear and concern, however, is that hotels are likely to be asked to accommodate and cater for literally thousands of guests from a standing start once the industry resumes. And that means their focus may not be on ensuring that food is properly and hygienically stored, prepared, handled or cooked to the standards that are known to reduce or eliminate the risk of guests contracting bugs that are known to cause symptoms of gastroenteritis.

What are my legal rights if I suffer from Holiday Illness in Tunisia?

The law allows a person that suffers loss as a result of consuming unsatisfactory food/drink served by a hotel in Tunisia to claim compensation, so long as the food was provided as part of the package holiday.

This means that if you have suffered with symptoms of gastroenteritis, such as diarrhoea, sickness and stomach pains, either during or following a package holiday, you may be able to claim compensation from your tour operator.

The person bringing the claim, however, must be able to prove not only that they were ill, but also that it was the food or drink that was served by the hotel that most likely made them ill.

We would recommend anyone considering bringing a claim for holiday illness contracted during a package holiday to seek advice from a holiday law specialist, as proving the cause of illness can be most difficult. For instance, tour operators can be quick to blame any illnesses contracted on one of their holidays on the weather, over indulgence, the sea or anything other than unsatisfactory food.

This means that in nearly every case there is a need for expert evidence and that steps have to be taken to force the tour operators to disclose documents relating to hygiene and illness.

Who can help me with my Holiday Illness Claim and what will it cost me?

Simpson Millar’s dedicated team of holiday claims experts have been dealing with holiday illness claims for many years and have a tour operating background, having previously worked for companies such as TUI, First Choice, MyTravel and Thomas Cook.

This means that we are well placed to assess potential claims, to give accurate advice, to obtain the documents that will be needed to win the case and get the expert evidence that is needed to prove the case.

There are different ways of funding a claim for holiday illness and Simpson Millar will consider what is best for you on a case by case basis. The most popular way of bringing a claim, however, is on a No Win, No Fee basis, the details of which we are open about and are happy to explain.

If you’ve been ill with gastric symptoms such as diarrhoea, stomach cramps and nausea during or following a package holiday taken over the last 3 years, and believe your symptoms were caused by consuming food or drink served to you by the hotel, then you can contact Simpson Millar for free, initial no-obligation advice on 0808 239 4285 or via the enquiry form on this site.

Popular Tunisia Hotels

Port El Kantaoui

Marhaba Palace Hotel
Royal Kenz Hotel
Sentido Bellevue Park
Concorde Green Park Palace
Seabel Alhambra Beach, Golf & Spa

Sousse

Marhaba Salem Hotel
Jaz Tour Khalef Hotel
Marhaba Beach Hotel
TUI BLUE Scheherazade
Marhaba Royal Salem
Occidental Sousse Marhaba
Iberostar Selection Diar El Andalous

Monastir

Iberostar Selection Kuriat Palace
One Resort Aqua Park
One Resort Jockey

Skanes

Sahara Beach
Skanes Family Resort

Hammamet

Hotel Bel Azur Thalasso & Bungalows
Hotel Le Sultan
TUI BLUE Oceana Suites
Sindbad Hotel
Paradis Palace Hotel
Hotel Royal Nozha
Phenicia Hotel
Steigenberger Marhaba Thalasso Hammamet
Splashworld Venus Beach
Delfino Beach
Hotel Aziza Beach Golf & Spa
Manar Hotel
Mirage Beach Club

Yasmine Hammamet

Medina Belisaire & Thalasso
Hotel Iberostar Averroes
TUI MAGIC LIFE Africana
Jaz Saphir Palace & Spa
Concorde Marco Polo Hotel
Diar Lemdina

When Will It Be Safe to Visit Cuba?

In recent years, Cuba has been one of the most popular holiday destinations for British holidaymakers, with TUI, the UK’s largest tour operator, providing all-inclusive package holidays to popular resorts such as Varadero, as well as to smaller resorts like Jibacoa.

Cuba has a unique culture and is famous for its old American cars, its political history and for its rum and cigars. Holidaymakers are also of course equally drawn to the Island by the fact that it offers a chance to spend time in the sun on white sandy beaches during the dreariest months of UK weather.

Once the current travel restrictions allow, we are sure that package holidays to Cuba will be as popular as ever with British tourists.

Apprehension about Holiday Illness in Cuba

Whilst we are excited and optimistic about the prospect of tourists being able to resume their travels to Cuba later in the year, we sincerely hope that after such an extended period of hotels being ‘out of action’, TUI and others do everything possible to ensure that when they reopen, they are safe and that guests are protected and kept safe.

Hotels and tour operators must, quite obviously, take steps to keep guests safe from Covid-19, but not at the expense of allowing other illness-causing bugs including Salmonella, Campylobacter, Cryptosporidium, Cyclospora and E.Coli to thrive.

Our fear is that hotels, in going from a lockdown situation to a position whereby they are expected to accommodate and cater for potentially thousands of guests, will neglect the steps that they should be taking to reduce the risks of guests contacting bugs that cause symptoms of gastroenteritis.

Illness causing pathogens such as Salmonella and Campylobacter can have a devastating impact on holidaymakers. They can cause short term sickness and discomfort, but can also lead to long term conditions including IBS, reactive arthritis, food aversions and a whole range of bowel issues.

Our fear is that once hotels begin to accept guests again on a large scale basis, there may be a lack of focus on food safety, hygiene standards and adherence with recognised systems designed to reduce the risk of such illnesses being contracted.

This includes Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point or “HACCP” systems, which require hotels to monitor where food is coming from, to ensure that food is stored in hygienic conditions and at correct temperatures, to properly cook and handle food and to make sure that any reheating food is limited and safe.

What can I do to avoid being ill in Cuba?

Holidaymakers will need to be vigilant when hotels start accommodating guests on an all-inclusive basis again.

Many holidaymakers place their trust in hotels and tour operators to get it right when it comes to the serving of food and reasonably expect the food to be safe. If, however, a dish does not taste right, there are signs of food being served undercooked or there are issues with the way that food is being prepared or handled, then our advice is not to eat and to raise your concerns with your holiday representative.

Of course, regular hand washing and the use of hand sanitizers before eating will also help.

Unfortunately though, holidaymakers are typically unaware of what is happening in the kitchens, in the food storage units and behind the scenes generally and so there is no way of truly knowing how hygienic the food being served actually is or whether it is likely to cause sickness.

What should I do if I suffer from a holiday illness in Cuba?

Eating contaminated food typically leads to symptoms of gastroenteritis presenting themselves within 1 to 3 days, although depending on the bug, there may be a longer period between the food being eaten and the symptoms presenting themselves.

Typical symptoms of gastroenteritis can include a combination of diarrhoea, sickness, stomach cramps, nausea and lethargy.

Our holiday law specialists have many years of experience of helping holidaymakers advance claims against tour operators on a No Win, No Fee basis and have secured hundreds of settlements for holidaymakers. The settlements in these claims range from hundreds to many thousands of pounds for genuine holidaymakers that have felt let down by their tour operator.

Most tour operators will deny that any such illness occurred or will say it was caused by something other than hotel food or drink. So it’s vital that if you become ill, you collate evidence so that you can prove that you were ill and that hotel food and drink was a likely cause.

We suggest that you report your illness to the holiday representative and ensure that a copy of your report is given to you or emailed to you. All too often, we have clients that are adamant that they reported being ill, but have no record of their complaint.

We also suggest that you take the names and contact details of others that are ill (as there could be an outbreak at the hotel) and capture photographic/video evidence of anything that concerns you about the hotel’s hygiene standards.

The law allows a holidaymaker that has become ill after consuming unsatisfactory food or drink served to them as part of a package holiday to claim compensation.

The amount of compensation will vary depending on the extent of the illness and the impact of the symptoms, so anyone that has fallen ill on an all-inclusive package holiday at one of the below hotels in Cuba (or indeed any package holiday) in the last 3 years should contact a specialist holiday law expert for legal advice.

Simpson Millar’s holiday claims team can be contacted via the enquiry form on this website or ringing 0808 239 4285.

Cuba Hotels

Varadero

  • Iberostar Tainos
  • Blau Varadero
  • Iberostar Varadero
  • Sol Palmeras
  • Royalton Hicacos
  • Ocean Vista Azul
  • Havana and Varadero
  • Iberostar Selection Bella Vista Varadero
  • Melia Internacional Varadero

Jibacoa

  • Memories Jibacoa Hotel