What’s Next for Mexican Holidays After Cyclospora and Salmonella Outbreaks?

Nick Harris
Head of Travel Law & Holiday Claims

For years, upmarket 5-star Mexican hotels have been hit annually by outbreaks of food poisoning. But as more people start to travel again, will this trend continue?

Whilst we hope this won’t be the case, we’ve seen more claims brought in recent years for holidays ruined by the seasonal sickness bug, Cyclospora. This is an infection of the bowel, usually caused by eating raw fruit, vegetables or herbs contaminated with human waste. Added to this is the emergence of Salmonella which has been affecting holidaymakers returning from Mexico this year.

As popular destinations like the Riviera Maya region start to reopen, it’s important that you know what to do if you’re affected by food poisoning while you’re away.

Get in touch with our Holiday Illness Solicitors for a no obligation free legal assessment.

Call us on 0808 239 7911 or request a callback

Why Does This Problem Continue?

Cyclospora in particular is a nasty bug which can cause unpleasant symptoms including stomach cramps, loss of appetite and diarrhoea. It usually affects holidaymakers staying in hotel resorts and has ruined many people’s hard-earned trips abroad. People who’ve suffered from the bug have reported:

  • undercooked food;
  • insects in their food
  • cross-contamination;
  • wild animals in restaurants;
  • luke-warm or cold food served.

Considering all this, why haven’t tour operators done more to address this problem in their hotels?

Symptoms of Cyclospora commonly appear about seven-10 days after catching the parasite that causes it. The symptoms of the bug can also seemingly disappear and return more than once, so it’s not uncommon for them to intensify after people have come back home.

Because of this, tour operators often aren’t familiar with the full extent of the issue at their hotels because people will often only discover what’s wrong after landing back in the UK. But this doesn’t mean you’re not entitled to compensation.

Tour operators should be taking steps to minimise the risk of holidaymakers contracting these sickness bugs … In my view, travellers should be informed of the risks of food poisoning if there is an upward trend in reported cases. 

- Simon Lomax, Associate Travel Lawyer

What Should I do if I’m Affected?

1. Seek medical advice – if you start to get symptoms while you’re on holiday, the most important thing is to be seen by a medical practitioner. A diagnosis will also help you further down the line if you decide to bring a claim as you’ll have evidence of the pathogen causing the illness.

2. Report it to the hotel – you should also report your illness to your holiday rep if you have one so the right actions can be taken to support you.

3. Speak to a Holiday Illness Solicitor – we’ve unfortunately seen package holiday companies offer compensation that is far less than what people are entitled to. We’d recommend speaking to a specialised Holiday Illness Claims Solicitor before accepting any offer.

What are my Rights if I was on a Package Holiday?

The type of holiday and activities you’ve booked will impact how much compensation you’re likely to receive from your tour operator.

If you’ve purchased a package holiday comprising of flights and accommodation, the process to making a claim could be made more straightforward. This is largely because of the Package Travel Regulations 2018 which allows you to bring a claim against a tour operator under UK law.

How we can Help

If you’ve been affected by Salmonella, Cyclospora or any other food poisoning while on holiday in Mexico, we could help you get compensation.

We can often act on a No Win, No Fee basis so you won’t need to worry about paying us anything if you’re claim isn’t successful.

Get in touch for free, no obligation initial advice.

For free legal advice, call our Holiday Claims Solicitors

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