A MOTHER is furious after her eight-month-old daughter caught hand, foot and mouth disease during a Tui holiday to Ibiza.
Keri Fullerton and her partner travelled with their daughter Imogen to the Family Life Club Aura for a holiday together in October last year.
However, half way through their holiday, eight-month-old Imogen quickly became unwell.
Keri told Sun Online Travel: “We booked a holiday through Tui and travelled on October 3.
“It was on the Saturday she started to get a bit unwell – she isn’t an unwell child and she was sick overnight a couple of times which was really strange.”
It was after she had spent the day in the kids club when the reps on-site noticed she was ill.
Keri said: “They noticed a bit of a rash on her and they said to go to the pharmacy and see if they had some lotion, which we did.
“Within the next 24 hours, she was absolutely covered.
“It looked like leprosy, it was absolutely awful.
“She was so poorly, she was itching all the time as it blistered.”
Keri told staff at the kids club but there wasn’t enough people on-site to help when the rash first appeared.
She explained: “My main gripe with Tui is the fact that when she started out with the rash, we went to the desk and there was no rep.”
“There was a training day that day so there were no reps available.
“There was just an A4 piece of paper pinned to a board saying there has been a recent outbreak of hand, foot and mouth at the hotel.
“However, another couple told us it had been up for a few days prior to us arriving at the hotel – Tui were aware of the outbreak prior to us arriving.
“Surely they have some duty of care to at least inform us of it before we travel so we can make the decision of whether to continue or not.”
She added: “I don’t think we would have gone, purely because she was eight-months-old and I wouldn’t have wanted to expose her to the risk knowing that there was an outbreak.”
Keri even feared they would not be able to fly home after the holiday as Imogen was so unwell.
She said: “Thankfully, we managed to get home and went to the hospital and had treatment.
“The hospital thought that it could leave her with some scarring.”
She explained Imogen suffered from eczema, which made her more susceptible to the illness.
It took baby Imogen three weeks to get better after returning to the UK, and Keri ended up catching the disease from her daughter as well.
However, it is the way Tui dealt with the problem that angered her.
She explained: “Since we’ve got back, I’ve been in constant contact with them but they have been fobbing me off each time with generic apologies.
“They should be telling people before they travel as our holiday was ruined.
“We only had a couple of days [there] before she got ill.
“At first I just wanted to let them know we had a bad experience, but a token gesture from Tui would be fabulous as there has been nothing at all or even a genuine sorry.”
“They told us: “We cant be 100 per cent she caught it there”.”
“But we didn’t leave the resort and the incubation period is a few days so it ties in exactly with her being there.
“Young children can be vulnerable to illnesses and they have failed in their duty of care.”
How you can avoid catching hand, foot and mouth
- wash your hands often with warm soapy water – and teach children to do so
- use tissues to trap germs when you cough or sneeze
- bin used tissues as quickly as possible
- don’t share towels or household items – like cups or cutlery
- wash soiled bedding and clothing on a hot wash
A spokesperson for Tui told Sun Online Travel: “We’re sorry to hear that Imogen was unwell during her stay. We were aware of a small number of reported cases of Hand, Foot and Mouth at the Family Life Club Aura in Ibiza.
“This type of infection, however, can occur in any situation, whether at home or on holiday.
“As a precautionary measure as soon as we were made aware of the small number of cases of this common illness, we implemented additional health and safety procedures to help prevent the spread of the infection, as well as displaying posters alerting customers and providing practical advice.
“We’d like to reassure customers that we regularly audit all of the hotels we feature in respect of health and safety, including hygiene.”
Sun Online Travel recently reported that a guest saw her £4,400 Tui holiday ruined thanks to the run-down hotel she was put up in.
Ree Mistry travelled to Jamaica with her fiance and found that her room had leaky toilets and scalding showers.
In a separate incident, Tui also advertised a resort in the Dominican Republic as “new” but guests were left angry and disappointed after discovering the property merely had a name change and had previously been hit with salmonella.