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Holiday Sickness or Injury

Whether your package holiday is short haul or a long haul exotic trip, you may be able to sue in your local County Court for compensation for any injury or illness that you are unfortunate enough to sustain while away.

The Package Tour, Package Holidays and Package Tour Regulations 1992 allow the consumer to sue under British Contract Law regardless of where the accident occurred.

At Watkins & Gunn, our jargon-busting, clear talking and highly experienced lawyers can help. We offer holiday sickness and injury legal claim support for:

What is your tour operator liable for?

They are responsible ‘for the proper performance of the obligations under the contract’. These ‘obligations’ are twofold:

  1. Those obligations that should be performed as promised, and;
  2. Those obligations where ‘reasonable care’ is required.

The first obligation category typically focuses around the holiday fulfilling its holiday description. If the ‘5-star beachside hotel’ is really a shack two miles inland then this is clearly in breach of the contractual obligation. It would be difficult for the tour operator to defend. Holiday sickness and injury claims normally arise from the second obligation category, under ‘reasonable care’.

Examples of ‘reasonable care’ obligations might include:

  • Maintenance of hotel premises to minimise trips and slips
  • Reasonable hygiene standards in the kitchen or pool
  • Reasonable driving skills by the coach driver on the way from the airport
  • The tour operator is liable even if its obligations are actually being carried out by local suppliers

The Package Tour Regulations can be seen as a very useful way to bring an action against the tour company for an accident anywhere in the World. Yet beware. It is limited to only what you pre-book in advance. This is normally the hotel, flight and transfer from the airport. It does not apply to exclusions booked once you have started your holiday.

A good example is a typical ski holiday. If you suffer a skiing injury and are blaming the skis you could sue your tour operator if you paid for the ski hire at the same time as you booked the holiday. It is common for ski tour operators to offer such ‘ski packages’. If you only arrange to hire on the coach transferring you from the airport to the resort you could not bring your claim under the Package Travel Regulations.

The recommendation is to pre-book as much as you can. Use a reputable tour operator and if the worst happens, consult one of our highly experienced and approachable lawyers who know their way around the Package Tour Regulations.

Have you had a skiing accident?

Click here to read how you may be entitled to claim.

Has food poisoning or sickness ruined your package holiday?

Click here to see how we can help.

Our specialist and highly regarded lawyers are committed to:

  • Creating the right legal solution for you
  • Providing jargon-free legal advice to ensure you understand your position and your case
  • Being discrete, available and proactive
  • To stand firm alongside you, without losing our approachability and ability to get the result you need
  • To be consistent, clear and transparent on fees
Speak to our highly experienced lawyers today. We’ll present your legal position clearly and offer you jargon-free advice without any hidden costs.


Contact us today to see how we can help you.