Holiday Accident Claims Guide – How Much Compensation Can I Claim?

By Stephen Moreau. Last Updated on 20th May 2022. In this guide, we’ll provide information and advice on making holiday accident claims. If you’ve suffered injuries in an accident while on holiday, and the accident was caused by another party’s negligence, then you may be entitled to claim for compensation. Here, we’ll explain what steps are involved if you have the evidence to start a holiday accident claim.

Have you had an accident abroad whilst on holiday, when travelling for business, or to visit family? If so, you may wish to find out if you could make a holiday accident claim. Your holiday should be an enjoyable and fun experience. It should not end in being injured or becoming sick and being left with the stresses of dealing with different health services and organising emergency travel back to the UK. If this has happened to you, you may be able to make a personal injury claim for damages from the party responsible for your accident.

A Comprehensive Guide To Holiday Accident Claims

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Holiday accident compensation claim

We have created this guide to holiday accident claims to provide helpful information for those injured or who became sick whilst on holiday through the fault of a service provider such as an airline, hotel, package holiday company, car hire company or other.

Through this guide, we shall look at some of the circumstances in which British tourists and business travellers may be harmed whilst abroad as well as providing information on when and how you could claim compensation, how much you may be owed in our personal injury claims calculator and what time limits you may need to be aware of.

Making successful holiday accident claims revolves around proving the negligence of a service provider caused your injury.

Getting In Touch With Our Accident Claims Team

If you have had an accident abroad and want to check if you are eligible to claim compensation or be connected to a personal injury solicitor from our panel, please call us today. Talk to us today to check what your claim may be worth. Dial 020 3870 4868 or use our online form to request a call back. Alternatively, if you have questions about holiday claims, you can also send your queries using the Live Chat window now on your screen.

Services And Information

Everything You Need To Know About Holiday Accident Claims

A holiday accident can happen for many different reasons – some of which you may be able to receive compensation for. It’s important to note that service providers have a duty of care to you. As with any personal injury claim, this duty of care means that you may be able to claim if you can prove that an accident was caused by them breaching this duty of care.

People often worry that making a holiday accident claim may be more complicated than other types of claim. From the perspective of a claimant, the process should be similar. Having said this, you do need to be aware that depending on the party who caused your accident, your claim may be made in the country where the accident happened – thus being subject to that countries law relating to rights, time limits and settlements.

Later in this guide, we shall look at examples of UK law and international agreements which facilitate compensation claims or which confer rights on travellers and responsibilities on service providers.

What Is A Holiday Accident?

Holiday accident claims deal with many different circumstances, in fact, such claims may deal with many circumstances similar to accidents which happen in the UK. Put simply, a holiday accident is any accident abroad which was caused by the negligence of someone other than the claimant.

An example of a holiday accident could be someone being struck by objects falling from an overhead storage locker on a flight which was not secured by cabin crew, or for unexpected turbulence, or even a hire car accident abroad. Accidents may also happen at your hotel, whilst using leisure or spa facilities, when on an organised excursion booked as part of a package holiday or other accidents relating to your flight. We should also note that people are able to claim compensation if their flight is delayed.

Could I make holiday accident claims for injuries in a hotel accident?

Were you injured in a holiday accident in a hotel? Perhaps you fell from a balcony that was not secured properly, or you suffered an injury in the hotel restaurant due to a slip, trip or fall?

Depending on whether you were on a package holiday or not, you could claim against the hotel itself or the tour operator. However, you must be able to show that negligence occurred. This means someone owed you a duty of care, breached the duty of care owed to you and caused you harm as a result.

Call our team for more information about whether you’re eligible to make a holiday accident claim.

Could holiday accident claims be made for swimming pool accidents?

Have you suffered an injury in a swimming pool accident that wasn’t your fault? Were there broken tiles in the swimming pool, or were the steps broken, for example? If so, and you were injured as a result of someone failing to uphold the duty of care they owed you, you could be eligible to claim.

However, the process of claiming may be different depending on who was negligent. If you’re interested in learning more, why not contact us.

Would I be able to make a holiday accident claim for an assault overseas?

Were you mugged overseas on holiday? Did the incident leave you injured? If so, call our team to find out whether you’re eligible to claim. The process of claiming may differ depending on the country in which you were harmed. For these types of holiday accident claims, the claims process could also differ because of the fact that it’s a criminal injury. However, one of our advisors can provide further guidance.

Next, we look at legislation and international agreements facilitating accident abroad compensation claims.

Conventions And International Agreements Governing Holiday Accident Claims

From a hire car accident abroad to a slip or fall accident on a cruise ship, there are many locations and circumstances in which people may be harmed and where they may need to claim compensation.

Depending on where and how you were injured, the cause of your accident and defendant, your solicitor may utilise some of the routes to holidaymaker rights and eligibility to claim compensation.

The Montreal Convention

The 1999 Montreal Convention is an international agreement which establishes that an airline has liability for injuries (including fatal injuries) which have happened to their passengers. It also establishes the airlines’ liability in terms of delay and loss of or damage to your luggage.

Package Holiday Regulations

This is an article of UK legislation which establishes the responsibility of those providing either package holidays or what are called ‘linked travel arrangements’. There are different levels of protection afforded to those who booked their holiday in these two different ways. Examples of such claims may include claims for road accidents abroad involving airport transfers pre-booked at the time of booking your holiday.

Cruise Ship Passenger Rights

There are specific rights conferred on those who travel either on cruise ships or ferries travelling to and from the UK (as well as on international cruises). You can find some examples of these above.

This is not a comprehensive list of ways in which people can make holiday accident claims.

British Traveler Accident Abroad Statistics

The Office of National Statistics (ONS) compiles information about overseas travel and tourism in the UK. The latest statistics, covering April to December 2020, shows that, in 2020, there were 23.8 million visits abroad by UK residents. 

60% of these visits were for holiday purposes. This means that there were 14.2 million holiday visits abroad in 2020. This is a 76% decline from the previous year. 

Of these visits, it’s unclear how many UK residents were injured while abroad and, as such, how many led to successful holiday claims. However, this still shows that millions of people from the UK travel abroad every year and so may look into making holiday accident claims if they’ve been injured on the trip. 

To learn more about claiming for a holiday accident, please contact us for free legal advice using the details above.

What Are The Most Common Accidents Or Injuries On Holiday?

There are types of holidays which may carry more inherent risks than others. For example, a ski or snowboarding holiday, adventure holiday or one involving a lot of sporting activities may carry more risk of injury than a week on the beach. However, even very relaxed holidays could still lead to you being involved in a holiday accident and visiting a doctors surgery or hospital abroad.

Examples of reasons for seeking accident abroad compensation include:

  1. Road accident abroad claims, such as those involving hire car accidents, motorcycle accidents and those involving airport transfer vehicles.
  2. Injuries caused by sporting activities. If you take part in an activity such as skiing, rock climbing or water sports which were booked as a part of your holiday package, you should be provided with adequate supervision, instruction and equipment to stay safe when participating.
  3. Illness caused by a lack of hygiene in your hotel, such as inadequate cleaning of facilities causing you to acquire an illness from a swimming pool or spa.
  4. Other accidents caused by a lack of safety or maintenance at a hotel swimming pool, such as slips trips and falls due to broken tiles.
  5. Food poisoning or allergic reaction caused by food served in a restaurant or your hotel.

When travelling abroad, remember to keep details of either your travel insurance policy or EHIC card (if travelling within the EU) in a safe and accessible place in case you are injured or become sick and have to seek medical care.

Compensation Payouts For Holiday Accident Claims In 2022

Once people have established their eligibility to make a claim for a holiday accident, they may wonder how much compensation may be offered if the claim succeeds. The first thing to note is that, as with other types of compensation claims, the compensation for holiday accidents may be made up of two heads. These are general damages (awarded based on the pain and suffering caused by the injury or illness suffered) and special damages (awarded based on financial costs encountered as a result of the injury or illness sustained). It is usually only possible to claim for any special damages if you’re eligible to claim for general damages.

To help get an understanding of holiday accident claim payouts, some people may make use of an accident abroad compensation calculator. However, in the table below we’ve included compensation brackets for different injuries that you could claim for following a holiday accident. The brackets, which should only be treated as estimates, are based on the 16th edition of the Judicial College Guidelines published in 2022. The amount you could receive from a holiday accident claim will depend on many factors, including the severity of the injury.

Location of injurySeverenessInformation on this injuryPotential award
EyesSingle levelComplete blindness / loss of sightIn the region of £268,720
BrainModerately SevereThis will lead to the victim being seriously disabled, meaning they need constant professional care, as well as other types of care. £219,070 to £282,010
BrainModerate (iii)Injuries like this will lead to the victim suffering memory and concentration issues, with their ability to work being reduced and a small epilepsy risk. £43,060 to £90,720
NeckSevere (i) The most severe forms of neck injury could present as paraplegia.In the region of £148,330
NeckModerate (ii) Moderate neck injuries could affect the bones of the neck or soft tissues. Could include whiplash and affect the upper back or shoulders.£12,900 to £23,460
BackSevere (i)Severe back injuries affecting the upper back may also affect the neck and / or shoulder joints.£91,090 to £160,980
BackModerate (i) Whilst the victim may recover, this may not be fully and there may be risidual levels of injury remaining.£27,760 to £38,780
LegModerateModerate injuries could include breaks, fractures or soft tissue injuries.£27,760 to £39,200
FaceSkeletal fracture(s)(b) Multiple fractures of facial bones£14,900 to £23,950
ShoulderSeriousInjuries such as those to the bones, joint, or to the soft tissues.£13,740 to £24,990

If you have further questions about holiday accident claims, then please contact UK Law today and our advisors will be happy to help. You can reach us by using the contact details found within this guide

Hire Car And Road Accidents That Could Cause Holiday Accident Claims

If you have been injured on the roads abroad, you may need to make a road accident abroad claim.

Road accidents abroad could happen whilst you are being transported by an airport transfer (booked as part of your trip) or when using a hire car which is found to be faulty. Those driving and operating airport transfers or who are leasing vehicles to holidaymakers have a duty of care to ensure your safety and that the vehicle is safe to operate. If your transfer or vehicle was purchased as part of your package or linked-travel arrangements, you could make a road accident abroad claim.

Discuss your road accident abroad and find out if you’re are eligible to claim by contacting a UK Lawyer today.

Package Holiday Accident Claims

For several years the UK has had strong legislation in place to protect people travelling on a package holiday. These rules may help people to make holiday accident claims in the event of an accident. In 2018 these rules were updated with The Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018. These regulations apply to holidays booked after July 1st 2018.

These regulations cover two types of travel arrangements. These are package holidays and linked travel arrangements. Package holidays have both financial and legal protection, whilst linked-travel arrangements are only financially protected. The financial protection for linked-travel arrangements will only protect travellers in the event of the company organising the sale becoming insolvent. It does not provide any protection in the event that a service provider (an airline for example) collapses or fails.

If you have been harmed due to a failure by your package holiday company or tour operator, contact one of our panel of personal injury lawyers to check your eligibility to claim compensation.

Slip And Fall Accidents Abroad

Slips and falls may happen as commonly whilst you are on holiday as when in the UK. hotels, holiday complexes, swimming pool areas, leisure facilities, ski trips and organised activities may all present different trip or fall hazards which could potentially cause injury if not correctly addressed by the service provider responsible. If the accident was the responsibility of your hotel, airport, airline, or the fault of a company providing an organised trip (booked as part of a package holiday) and if it occurred because of a failure on their part to ensure your safety, then this party may be liable to pay you compensation in the event of a slip, trip or fall causing your injury.

Slips and falls may result in simple sprains and strains or cuts and bruises, or they may result in you fracturing a wrist or ankle, or even sustaining a head injury. However you were injured, if another person was to blame you could have grounds to claim compensation through a law firm.

Claiming On Behalf Of A Family Member Injured Abroad

There may be circumstances in which the injured party is unable to claim on their own behalf. If this is the case, you may be able to act for them and assist them in their compensation claim with a UK Lawyer.

If the holiday accident claim involves an injury to a child or to a person who is determined to lack the mental capacity to claim on their own behalf, then you may act in their place. For example, those under the age of eighteen (18) are not able to bring legal claims in their own name. In such cases, an adult may be appointed as a ‘litigation friend’ and make the claim in their place. The compensation will be held for the claimant until they are 18. If no claim is made before the child turns eighteen they are then able to make the claim on their own behalf, abiding by the standard three-year time limit.

How Much Time Do I Have To Claim For An Accident Abroad?

As addressed above, there are circumstances in which the typical three-year personal injury claims time limit may not apply. Circumstances in which different time limits may apply could include some of the following situations.

Claims made in a different country

If your accident did not happen in the UK and the party responsible is solely based in this country, your claim may be made outside the UK. For example, if an accident took place in Spain and a Spanish party is liable, the claim may be brought in Spain. As such, Spanish time limits and compensation settlement guidelines would apply.

In-flight Injuries

If you are claiming compensation under the Montreal Convention for an in-flight injury you should be aware that there is a shorter two-year personal injury claims time limit which applies.

To check what time limit may apply to your claim, please talk to one of our panel of holiday accident lawyers today.

How long does it take to make holiday accident claims?

This depends on the situation. If you’re claiming against a package holiday company based in the UK, the general time limit will be three years from the date of the accident. However, for claims not against a UK based package holiday company, the time limit of the country in which the accident happened may apply.

I Had An Accident Abroad, What Should I Do?

If you have had an accident abroad, below you can find information on what to do. Knowing what to do after an accident abroad can help you and your personal injury lawyer later when you are making your compensation claim. In the event of a holiday accident, the first thing you should do is always to seek any medical care needed. Your health should be your primary concern. When you do visit a doctor or hospital, please also obtain a copy of any medical reports or notes. This may be very useful medical evidence.

Following this, our accident abroad claims advice is that you take these steps in case you wish to claim injured overseas compensation when you get back to the UK.

Firstly we would recommend getting evidence of the accident taking place and the injuries that you have suffered. If possible either take photos of the accident and your injury or ask someone who you are travelling to do so. Most cameras and phones should have a date stamp on the image. We also recommend asking anyone who saw what took place for their contact details and if they can serve as a witness if necessary.

In the event of a road traffic accident make sure that you and the other road user exchange details such as contact information, insurance providers and vehicle registration details.

Do You Handle Holiday Accident Claims On A No Win No Fee Basis?

If you are considering making a holiday accident claim one of the easiest and most convenient ways to do so may be through what is called a no win no fee agreement, also known as a Conditional Fee Agreement. Through a no win no fee agreement a personal injury solicitor will provide you with the same level of service as would be provided under any other funding model. The main difference with a no win no fee agreement is that you will only need to pay for your solicitor’s success fees in the event that you are awarded compensation. This means that your financial risk is lowered compared to funding models with upfront costs. It may also make your accident abroad claim more affordable.

Please contact UK Law today to see if our panel of solicitors are able to help you. We will listen to what happened to you whilst abroad on holiday to see if you are eligible to claim compensation. Our panel of solicitors can also provide you with a compensation estimate regarding any holiday accident claims you may be able to make. You can talk to our team today by using the details at the top of this page or dialling 020 3870 4868.

Essential Holiday Accident Claims Resources

In addition to the information discussed in this guide, you may also find the following resources helpful if injured specifically whilst on holiday or in other circumstances.

Compensation Tables for Personal Injury Claims
Find out more about general personal injury claims you could make with a solicitor in this guide.

FCO – Foreign Travel Advice
The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office provides up-to-date travel and safety information for destinations around the world. Check the latest advice before you travel.

Travel Aware Campaign
Information from the government about how to stay safe when travelling abroad, such as advice relating to passports and travel insurance.

Unexpected Turbulence Aviation Passenger Accidents

Other Useful Guides

Thanks for reading our guide to holiday accident claims. Please contact us if you have further questions about holiday claims.