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Drunken holiday injuries for middle-aged, not just for teenagers

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Middle-aged Brits are just as likely to end up with drunken injuries on holiday as youngsters, a new study has revealed. While teenagers and twenty-somethings are thought to be the biggest culprits for drunken antics abroad, those in their late thirties and forties are suffering their fair share of mishaps after enjoying too much sangria by the pool.

One in ten has even ended up in hospital after an booze-related accident.

It also emerged that despite being older and wiser, forty-somethings are also just as, or even more likely to take risks they wouldn’t dare to at home, including riding a moped without a helmet, taking drugs and swimming while drunk.

A spokesman for financial comparison site, which commissioned the research, said:

“Young adults, particularly those in their late teens and early twenties have the worst reputation when it comes to drunken behaviour abroad.

“But it seems that while they may be older and more mature, people in their late thirties and forties are challenging them for that title.

“They might not be hitting nightclubs and downing shot after shot, but many of the older generation will still admit to drinking far more than they do back home.

“Sitting around the pool with a few bottles of wine or spending nights in bars and restaurants sampling the local sangria might seem more civilised and laid back, but chances are, the alcohol consumption is just the same.

“And mixed with the warmer temperatures and time spent lounging in the sun the effects of the alcohol are seeing a large number of people – old and young – falling ill or even injuring themselves.”

The study, of 2,000 Brits, found that 45% of 35-44 year olds have faced an alcohol-related injury or illness while on holiday – just under the 49% of those in their early twenties who have had the same fate.

And almost one in ten of the older Brits have ended up in hospital because of it – not far off the 16% of 18-24 year olds who had a similar outcome.

Almost half of those in their late thirties and early forties even admitted to having an ‘I’m on holiday’ mentality as soon as they step off the plane, which sees them happily drinking more alcohol and taking more risks than usual.

More than one in ten even admitted to riding a moped without a helmet while abroad – more than any other age group – while another 18% often go for a late night swim after a day of drinking.

Having a one night stand and even taking drugs are other things middle-aged Brits are getting up to while holiday.

More than a quarter of 35-44 year olds behave so badly, they even went as far as to say they usually regret their behaviour and drunken antics once they return home.

The study also found that four in ten Brits have suffered a booze-induced illness or injury while on holiday abroad, with alcohol poisoning, broken bones and sunstroke among the most common complaints.

One in ten have even ended up in a foreign hospital after a drunken accident or illness, with just under one in twenty admitting they have had more than one visit to a local medical centre while abroad.

Two thirds of those who have suffered a booze-related accident said their injury completely ruined their holiday, while another 49% said it led to rows with others they were travelling with.

But while it means their holiday dreams of relaxing on the beach are ruined, the average injury or illness also costs an average £445 in medical treatments, extra nights in a hotel or even rebooked flights.

Researchers also found that 36% of Brits see injuries and illnesses abroad as something which only affects other people, with one in ten so confident it will never happen to them, they always travel without insurance.

A spokesman for added:

“From the research it has become clear that when Brits go abroad on their holidays, we do employ a different mentality, and behave differently to when we are at home.

“This makes it really important to ensure that you have adequate insurance cover in place, if the worst were to happen.

“Most policies can be tailored to include cover for any special activities that you may partake in while on holiday, for example beach / water sports.

“It is important to ensure that you have the correct cover in place, so that your policy will pay out if a claim arose from one of these activities.

“Travel insurance is designed to protect you, provided that you take reasonable care to look after yourself and act in a responsible way, so people should go away and enjoy themselves, however they need to employ a little common sense to ensure they get the maximum benefit from their insurance.”


1. Alcohol poisoning
2. Broken ankle
3. Broken arm/wrist
4. Stomach bug
5. Broken foot/toe
6. Broken back/neck
7. Broken hand/finger
8. Sprains
9. Sunstroke
10. Broken knee
11. Scalds or burns
12. Broken leg
13. Concussion
14. Food poisoning
15. Head injury
16. A serious cut which needs stiches
17. Broken hip/pelvis
18. Broken nose
19. Broken rib
20. Broken shoulder/collar bone