Woman’s ‘bedbug nightmare’ on holiday with people ‘too scared’ to use pool with her
A woman needed hospital treatment after she was covered in bedbug bites during nightmare Egypt holiday.
‘Abbie’ was told by a medic he had never seen such a bad case prompting with antihistamine injections and antibiotics.
Her bedbug bites left her embarrassed and in pain during her fortnight holiday in Hurghada, Egypt at the age of 19.
She was unable to sunbathe or relax because of the medication she was asked to take and when using the hotel pool was asked if she had an infectious disease.
YorkshireLive reports Abbie said: “The doctor was just shocked when he saw me, he said he had never seen so many bites on one person.
“It was just awful, I was crying on the phone to my mum and dad every night and the hotel didn’t move me until eight days later.”
The hotel provider’s legal team denied liability over the hotel bugs.
Hudgell Solicitors, which represented Abbie in the holiday injury claim, sought expert medical opinion.
It concluded her bites were “too voluminous” to have been brought in on her own luggage.
Abbie, from West Yorkshire, flew from Manchester Airport to join her grandparents at the Hotel Nubia Aqua Beach Resort in October 2018 for a break after experiencing a family bereavement.
She says although her room looked clean it “smelt foisty” but she thought little of it.
The next day she noticed she was covered in small red marks and bumps and when she mentioned it to the hotel reception staff they told her she must have been bitten by a mosquito.
But over the next few days, the number of bites increased and they began to swell, creating big, red, itchy lumps.
She said: “It was just a nightmare. I could feel sharp pains and burning, and I just could not relax, especially as people began looking at me, making me feel self-conscious.
“Rubbing sun cream on was just unbearable, I would feel faint and sick. One woman even asked me if I had a disease and was she safe to go in the pool that I had just been in.”
She was advised to seek treatment at the Nile Hospital in Hurghada where she was prescribed antihistamine injections and antibiotics.
Now 23 and working in the travel industry herself, Abbie claimed she asked the hotel repeatedly to move her and to fumigate her room.
But it claims it acted immediately and a room change was arranged the next day.
When she did move the bites, she says, stopped at once.
After flying home her grandparents witnessed the hotel fumigating the block that her old room was in.
She later contacted Hudgell Solicitors’ travel litigation team for advice.
Travel litigation executive Anne Thomson sought the advice of medical experts sharing with them Abbie’s photos, symptoms and treatment as part of the holiday injury abroad claim.
Ms Thomson said: “Bed bug cases are not always easy to prove. A hotel or travel company will argue that the bugs could have been brought into the hotel room on a client’s own luggage.
“However, on this occasion, the medical expert’s view was that the bites were too voluminous to have been brought into the room in her suitcase.
“Looking at the photos it is obvious she was severely bitten and was in some considerable discomfort and experiencing pain.”
Hudgell Solicitors alleged the tour operator failed to institute appropriate inspections to assess the hygiene, health and safety standards, failed to monitor these standards adequately or at all and exposed the woman to a foreseeable risk of injury.
It was also alleged it failed to take reasonable care of her.
She was eventually awarded £2,500 in compensation which the holiday firm pushed for, but the hotel provider’s legal team denied liability.
It is understood that it assisted Abbie when alerted in 2018.
A room change was organised and further support was offered.
Compensation on behalf of Abbie was initially rejected, before being settled with an offer of £2,500.
Most of the scarring from the Abbie’s bites have now healed although some are visible when in the sun.
Abbie said: “Anne has been brilliant throughout the whole case. It hasn’t put me off holidays, but now whenever I go into a room, I get a bit anxious and check the mattress and the bedding.
“I really wouldn’t want to go through that again.”
A spokesman for travel agency We Love Holidays said: “We are pleased to hear that Abbie has been able to settle her claim with the hotel provider.
“We have robust policies in place to ensure all hotels available through our site maintain high standards.
“It’s incredibly rare for incidents like this to happen so we’re sorry that, on this occasion, Abbie’s experience fell short of expectations.”