Four members of the same British family have been jailed and fined by a court in Liverpool after submitting a fake food poisoning claim following their holiday in Benidorm during July 2015. All four alleged they became ill after eating the hotel food.
They demanded around £50,000 (€56,700) compensation from travel operator Jet2 Holidays after their stay at Aqua Magic Rock Gardens Hotel. The group filed their claim when they returned to the UK alleging that the hotel food had given them nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea and stomach cramps.
However, the court heard that all four had posted messages on social media sites, stating that they were having “the best holiday ever” and “enjoying every minute.” Hotel records were produced which showed they had been ordering alcohol, including beer, gin and vodka, even when they were supposed to be unwell.
“For some time we have warned that making false claims could lead to serious consequences, and this ruling shows how serious they can be.”
Jet2 Holidays said in a statement that each of the four was sentenced to three months in prison and fined £750 (€842) for, “concocting a fake claim for gastric illness to win compensation.” They were also ordered to pay the travel operator’s legal costs.
Steve Heapy, CEO of Jet2.com and Jet2holidays, said “For some time we have warned that making false claims could lead to serious consequences, and this ruling shows how serious they can be.”
Hotels are responsible for the claims made against travel operators, and Spain’s hoteliers believe they have lost millions of Euros after thousands of similar complaints were filed by British holidaymakers over several years. Fourteen months ago, the British government promised to crackdown on the “holiday sickness claims culture” which is not evident in other European countries.