Egypt, Mexico and Dominican Republic top winter holiday illness chart

More than a quarter of all winter holiday illness cases originate in Egypt, according to new data from law firm Bott & Co Solicitors.

Mexico follows as next worst destination with more than one in ten claims, closely followed by the Dominican Republic.

The three winter sun destinations account for almost half of all illness claims that the solicitors handles, taken from more than 1,500 holiday illness cases.

The Canary Islands and Morocco, each at 3%, make up the top five most common holiday illness locations.

Analysis of holiday illness claims found that Egypt has 144% more than Mexico. Meanwhile, Mexico has 22% more claims than the Dominican Republic.

However, the Caribbean island had 197% more holiday illness claims than the Canary Islands and Morocco.

The top five destinations have some of the warmest winter climates in the world, which means there is a higher chance of bacteria multiplying when food is left out.

Many all-inclusive resorts offer a buffet service and open restaurants where food is exposed for long periods of time.

Situations that generally make people unwell are because of animals roaming around the food area, food not being kept at a constant temperature, insects found in meals and a lack of hygiene awareness, according to the specialist law firm.

Types of food poisoning that can be contracted are typical gastro intestinal illness such as Salmonella, Typhoid, Campylobacter and E. coli. These can cause symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhoea, headaches and fatigue.

Bott & Co legal manager Andrew Peters said: “If people on all-inclusive package holiday become ill abroad, by law they are protected by The Package Holiday Regulations 1992, and the tour operator may be liable for all the services they provided such as flights, accommodation and car hire.

“However, many people are still not aware that they can claim for compensation under these regulations.

“Clients often approach us after their complaint has been ignored by the tour operators who don’t want to accept responsibility.”

He added: “People don’t realise the lifelong consequences that food poisoning can have. For example, contacting Salmonella, Campylobacter or E. coli can lead to serious conditions such as reactive arthritis or post infective irritable bowel syndrome. These can be life changing conditions.

“One recent case involved a holiday maker who contracted Salmonella, which in turn caused reactive arthritis resulting in a three week stay in hospital and an inability to work.”

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