Reviewers who say that they stayed at the Steigenberger Aqua Magic in Hurghada have commented that they suffered the symptoms of diarrhoea and vomiting at the Egyptian hotel in April and May of this year.

The Steigenberger Aqua Magic in Hurghada, Egypt

The Steigenberger Aqua Magic is situated in the popular holiday resort of Hurghada in Egypt and advertised by British tour operator Thomas Cook on an all-inclusive basis. The ‘Aquamania’ branded resort features bars, restaurants and facilities to appeal to a wide range of holidaymakers, but recently there have been reviewers who have commented on a potential problem with illness, that they say they aren’t sure can be attributed to food poisoning.

Holidaymakers say they suffered symptoms of gastric illness

TripAdvisor reviews for the Hurghada based hotel are generally very positive, with many satisfied reviewers talking about how much they enjoyed themselves, but there have also been some who say that they encountered problems with a gastric illness during their stay, with one holidaymaker pointing out a possible problem with cross-contamination in the hotel kitchen.


In their review titled “Sorry! Never again“, ‘Marwa S’ who stayed at the Steigenberger Aqua Magic this May says that “all [of her] family have [diarrhoea]“, elaborating that at the time of writing her review, “three of [her] children [had] vomited in the last couple of nights“. She says that she’s not sure if “it’s the food” or the “pool water” that caused their condition, all that she does know is that her “family is sick right now“.


Liverpool holidaymaker ‘donna m’ wrote a review of her stay in April titled “3 TIMES HERE !!! LUCKY OR NOT !!!!!!” in which she says that “at the main buffet restaurant” they noticed that “the chef [turned a piece of] cooked chicken” before “[placing] raw chicken on the grill“, after which they say that the chef “then returned to the cooked chicken [still wearing the] same […] gloves“.

She says that she, her “husband and a few others did walk away“, and she “did complain to the hotel and Thomas Cook“, explaining to them that this practice could cause “cross-contamination“. She also comments that she “found [that] the food [was] not hot enough“.


‘Amanda S’ from Tenby also stayed at the Steigenberger Aqua Magic this April, and in her review titled “Brilliant Hotel“, she says that “4 out of 5 of [her party] had [diarrhoea] and [vomiting throughout] the week” that they stayed there.


Why cross-contamination can be so concerning

There are many potential hygiene errors that could lead to hotel guests suffering the symptoms of a gastric illness, including meals being served at an unsafe temperature. Some of these causes of illness can occur so quickly that the individual who made the mistake might not even realise that they have done. Cross-contamination is one of these errors.

Cross-contamination and the risk of holiday food poisoning

Cross-contamination occurs when the whole or part of a meal, for instance, a piece of chicken, which may have been considered safe to eat and to pose a reduced risk of food poisoning having been prepared correctly, becomes contaminated with harmful bacteria or parasites.

In our experience, this type of cross-contamination usually occurs in hotel kitchens when the same utensils are used to handle raw and cooked produce, but it can also be caused by food handlers not changing their gloves, as they’re still transferring hazardous pathogens.

This type of cross-contamination can be seen to drastically increase the chances that you will become unwell, and in effect undoes the good work that making your food safe to eat in the first place achieves, potentially exposing you to a harmful holiday ruining pathogen such as Salmonella.

Request a free holiday claim consultation

If you’ve suffered a bout of food poisoning that left you unable to enjoy your package holiday, whether your condition was caused by raw chicken, cross-contamination or another hygiene error, then you might be able to claim compensation from your tour operator.

You may be able to make a claim because of The Package Travel Regulations 1992, which places a responsibility on your tour operator to take reasonable steps to ensure your safety abroad.

If you’d like to find out if you’re able to make a ‘no win no fee‘ holiday illness claim, speak to one of our travel law specialists who can provide you with a free no-obligation consultation.

Andrew Tarling – Holiday Compensation Claims Manager

Get in touch

If you want to find out more about claiming for illness at the Steigenberger Aqua Magic in Egypt; contact Andrew Tarling by completing our enquiry form, call us on 0808 145 1353 or visit our On Holiday Claims website.