Are you a fan of all inclusive holidays? If so, we have some rather alarming news for you. There’s a very real possibility this popular board basis option could soon be scrapped and Brits may no longer be able to help themselves to tasty buffets and unlimited drinks during trips away. Read on to find out more…
Threats have been made to call a halt to all inclusive in a bid to combat bogus food poisoning claims, as hotels look to crack down on paying out for false cases. It is reported that there has been an ‘embarrassing’ spike from Brits, which is said to have cost the holiday industry around £40m.
Travellers are being encouraged to make illness allegations based on the belief that they can win payouts between £3k-£5k per person. Beware though, warnings issued by tour operators state that anyone found to be making such unfounded claims could be sued or face criminal prosecution.
Recently, a case put together by two Britons claimed they were ‘bed-ridden’ due to food poisoning from their all inclusive hotel in Gran Canaria. However a counter-argument was made stating that the duo actually ordered 109 alcoholic drinks over nine days, as seen on a later bill, after the guests tried to sue their tour operator.
One further example of this came to fruition after a couple were accused of fraudulent illness claims and their Crete hotel made a £170,000 counter-case for damages. That particular duo allegedly fabricated a £10,000 claim after saying their all inclusive resort’s food and drink made them ill. The bid for compensation was not put together until three years after the holiday, which arose suspicions, and their case was dropped once the counter-claim was launched.
It appears holidaymakers are taking advantage of a loophole which trade body organisation ABTA claims is encouraging the scam, and the Government have subsequently been urged to close. It is believed that legislation designed to stop fraudulent whiplash claims, regarding a cap on fees charged by law firms, has resulted in the rise in travel sickness cases because it does not apply to incidents overseas.
The majority of reported cases have involved all inclusive resorts, given holiday-goers can conceivably claim they only consumed food at one place (their hotel) and identify that as the source of any supposed illness. As there is more doubt whenever guests choose a different board basis (such as bed & breakfast for example), considering they will have eaten in multiple venues during their trip, it is not expected that other holiday types will be under threat.
The aforementioned trade body organisation ABTA has initiated a ‘Stop Sickness Scams’ campaign for travel businesses and members of the public to email their local MP, urging them to take action against the increasing number of fraudulent illness claims. It is hoped that, with enough backing, the current loophole will be closed so to thwart the serious prediction that holiday prices could increase and honest travellers could see their choice of resort dramatically reduced as hoteliers refuse to offer their products to the UK market.
Visit www.stopsicknessscams.com to back the campaign and help save all inclusive holidays.
Published on 27th April 2017
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