The Dominican Republic and food poisoning

The Dominican Republic has earned an unenviable reputation as being one of the ´food poisoning holiday hotspots´.

holiday illness claim

Standards of hygiene and food have generally improved over the past five years in the Dominican Republic, but tourists continue to suffer outbreaks of holiday illness and food poisoning at the Caribbean destination.

It has been reported that nearly 40% of visitors to the Dominican Republic become ill while on holiday there, and that one in five tourists on package deals become ill after eating all-inclusive food at hotels.

Earlier this year, the BBC programme, Secret Tourist secretly filmed hotel restaurants, rooms and public areas, to reveal shocking standards of hygiene and poor food preparation, which could lead to food poisoning.

Hotels in Turkey and the Dominican Republic were highlighted, and experts tested food and water at the Fun Royale Tropicale Hotel in the Dominican Republic and at the 4-star Club Armar Hotel in Marmaris, Turkey.

Food at the all-inclusive Fun Royale Tropicale Hotel buffet was seen to be left out in warm conditions, uncovered and often re-served the following day. Swabs were also taken from the restaurant tables and chairs, where bird droppings could be clearly seen. Results showed Campylobacter contamination, which causes symptoms of vomiting and diarrhoea.

Holidaymakers who had stayed at the Fun Royale Tropicale Hotel had complained of suffering symptoms which included diarrhoea, vomiting, fever and stomach cramps.

At the Armar Hotel in Marmaris, Turkey, holidaymakers had previously complained of sickness and diarrhoea, re-heated food and a dirty swimming pools. Guests reported that the same food was served every day, and left out, uncovered at room temperature. Many guests had complained of suspected food poisoning before the BBC team went to investigate.

E.coli was found in the swimming pool, which was linked to faecal contamination, which causes serious gastric illness. E.coli was also found in the ice cubes, being served in drinks.

Campylobacter infection can also prove serious. Campylobacter is a bacteria that causes food poisoning, and most people who become ill with it suffer symptoms of diarrhoea, cramping, abdominal pain and fever within 2 to 5 days. Diarrhoea may contain blood, and you may suffer from nausea and vomiting. The illness typically lasts a week, although you can carry the  bacteria without suffering any symptoms at all. In people with weakened immune systems, Campylobacter can spread to the bloodstream and causes a serious life-threatening infection.

Holiday illness is no joke, and if you are struck down with symptoms of sickness, vomiting, nausea, fever or stomach cramps, in a holiday hotel which is part of a package tour, and you suspect standards of hygiene or food preparation are to blame, you can claim substantial compensation for loss of enjoyment of your holiday, pain and suffering and medical expenses.

If you have stayed at a holiday package hotel in Egypt, Turkey, the Dominican Republic, Spain, Tunisia, or any other destination, and you have suffered food poisoning or holiday illness due to poor food preparation or bad hygiene standards, you can claim compensation when you return to the UK. Contact a personal injury solicitor who works on a no win, no fee basis, and one who is experienced in dealing with holiday illness compensation claims. Tour operators have a responsibility to ensure you are not exposed to holiday food poisoning, and if you suffer illness which ruins your holiday, you are well within your rights to make a claim for holiday illness compensation.

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