Travel insurance – What to do if you’re injured on holiday
Given how easy and common it is to suffer a personal injury while on holiday abroad, it is perhaps surprising that more people do not think about this and get the necessary insurance cover from a reputable company beforehand, as well as taking simple precautionary steps of course. Then again, most people associate holidays with the chance to unwind, and therefore there is a reluctance to consider the things that might go wrong, and how they can be prevented. Of course, some holidays abroad will carry a greater risk of injury than others – with the likes of rock-climbing and skiing trips obviously carrying far greater danger – but for most people there are far more common types of potential accidents abroad waiting to happen. Food poisoning, accidents around the pool, road accidents and slips and trips arising from poor maintenance can be frighteningly common, but there are a number of easy ways to reduce the risk of being injured like this:
Reducing the risks
To begin with there are those accidents which take place within your accommodation, and you can limit the risk of those by having sufficient grasp of the language to be able to read menus and warning signs such as those indicating wet or slippery floor surfaces, and by ensuring that any swimming facilities at your hotel have a lifeguard on duty. Again a basic grasp of the language – even if it just means having a phrasebook – can be crucial when it comes to avoiding road traffic accidents abroad. The majority of these are caused by not being able to understand road signs, coupled with general ignorance about different road laws (for example the speed limit and right of way laws) in other countries. In addition, if you are renting a car while abroad, you should also make sure that it is in road-worthy condition first. Finally, you can avoid common accidents at places you visit while abroad if you make sure to wear footwear and clothing which is appropriate and if you take these steps – as well as getting the necessary insurance – there is no reason why your holiday shouldn’t be fun. However for many reading this article you may have already been injured on holiday, despite efforts to avoid this, or you may be eager to know what to do in the event of an accident so you’re prepared just in case. The internet can be an invaluable companion in this area as you can look up where to find medical help in the local area and track down necessary contact numbers if you don’t already have them, otherwise here are a few other tips to bear in mind:
What to do next
First of all you need to seek the kind of care that is firstly, necessary for your injury – your health is the most important thing – and secondly, care that won’t leave you with a huge debt. Utilise your EHIC card and travel insurance here if they’re available. Contact your insurance company and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office who may be more than happy to help. After hopefully regaining some form of comfort and health, you can decide whether you wish to pursue a legal claim against any party you may deem guilty for your injuries. Some accidents occur due to no fault of any third parties but others are full of negligence such as food poisoning or bad upkeep of premises. Sites like www.expresssolicitors.com list some of the more common types of holiday claims that are made and can be vital in helping you discern if you have a case. Take all the evidence you can, including photos and diaries of events; a firm like Express Solicitors will need to build a case before filing a claim against the negligent parties. If your package holiday was based in Europe it may well come under UK jurisdiction. Injury or illness whilst abroad can be a major source of stress but with the right preparation and a cool head you can alleviate much of the stress and even gain rightful compensation should you have suffered from the negligent behaviour of a third party.