This past few weeks has been busy in dealing with the numbers of holidaymakers affected by illness and poor hygiene conditions in resorts. The range of complaints indicate to us that whether the 'offence' against the holidaymaker is on land or at sea, there is scant regard to the issues that underpin the problems. Let's face it, Giardia, Salmonella, Coliforms and so-called Norovirus is not down to any holidaymaker or a bug on the island - it is pure and simple, down to poor hospitality management.
The one fear that we have is that an illness will have a serious affect upon a vulnerable holidaymaker, and could quite possibly kill them! This may seem to some readers a lttle over the top, however, in one resort this year - Los Gigantes - we have heard of many people becoming ill in the resort in what has become an annual-fest of holiday complaints.
We have heard recently from one holidaymaker about another, who was on a recuperation holiday from Cancer and apparently contracted the so-called bug of Los Gigantes. She was so poorly that her husband was desparate to get her back to the UK to prevent her from suffering any further because he was worried about the effect of the 'bug' on her medical condition.
When I speak of this or other resorts, the 'groupies' come out of the woodwork, attacking what they see as my unfair comments about their favourite resort. However, whilst I always respectfully educate these commentators on the 'reality' of such resorts, I am mindful of the victims of poor planning or just a simple lack of plain honesty when a serious illness situation arises in a resort.
For many years we have monitored resorts around the world and provided guidance to holidaymakers caught in what can sometimes be a dreadful situation. Another benefit of our monitoring comes from the fact that we collate evidence which helps holidaymakers when they make their claims; it also benefits political pressure - either locally or through the EU Commission, that standards must be improved in these resorts.
The one reason why we are successful in watching and reporting what goes on is because we have a great partnership with holidaymakers - they know, that we are like a dog with a bone; we are not going to let go of the issue, wherever that may be!