Be Prepared for Holiday Accidents - Some Practical Advice


It may not be the happiest of thoughts when preparing for your summer holidays, but thinking about the possibility of a holiday accident before you travel will help you to cope in the event of an emergency.

First Aid Kit

You should always have a first-aid kit handy when travelling abroad, particularly if you are travelling with children. Many commercially available ready-made kits suit the most basic of needs, but our travel lawyers advise holidaymakers to consider making their own or supplementing a pre-assembled kit, so that it takes into consideration your own needs.

Prior to travelling abroad, it is also advisable to check the expiry dates of items, particularly medication to ensure that your supply is not out of date.

Putting your Holiday First-Aid Kit Together

If you decide to make up your own first-aid kit, choose a durable waterproof container, which is large enough to contain all the items that you need. Ideally the container should be transparent so that you can see and obtain the items easily in an emergency.

Simon Lomax, Simpson Millar’s Holiday Accident and Illness Manager, says:

"Carryalls for fishing tackle or small toolboxes are ideal because they contain compartments. On its lid, why not stick a list of useful telephone numbers – such as your tour operators Duty Office number and, once your arrive in resort, the emergency numbers for your Representative and local doctor."

"Accidents can happen anywhere and you may need the kit on the beach, by the swimming pool, at the local waterpark, or on excursions. Children are notorious for stepping on sharp rocks, sea urchins and falling over."

"A basic first-aid kit is a must for parents with accident prone children who routinely suffer minor cuts, bruises and bumps. Bite cream, Calpol and Imodium are also a useful addition."

Your First-Aid Shopping List

When you decide what to include, do not overstock – after all you will have to carry it with you. Simply remember to replace whatever you use. Ideally your first-aid kit will include the following items to treat those frequent but fortunately minor holiday accidents:

  • Pair of scissors – not to be kept in your hand luggage
  • Tweezers – for removing dirt, spines, or thorns
  • Teaspoon for medicine
  • Thermometer or temperature strips
  • Large safety pins
  • Paracetamol
  • Antiseptic solution
  • Calamine lotion for sunburn, rashes and minor skin irritation
  • Cream or gel for insect bites and stings
  • Cotton balls, swabs, gauze pads, bandages, and plasters

Holiday Accidents Happen

There is nothing worse for a parent than to see your child in pain, or in urgent need of medical attention. Young children and teenagers are adventurous and enthusiastic in their exploration of new surroundings, and accidents are bound to happen. Luckily, serious mishaps are relatively rare but even the most minor accidents can be fraught with difficultly in a foreign destination.

Where is the Local Emergency Room?

Finding out where your local hospital will be in advance of travelling may also be invaluable if an emergency occurs. Don't forget to pack those vital travel insurance documents and your EHIC card too as you may need them.

It helps to be prepared in case of an accident abroad!

If you or a member of your family is unfortunate enough to suffer from an accident on holiday, which is not your fault, you may be entitled to make a claim for compensation from your tour operator.

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