We’re so sorry. Travel news cannot always be about thrilling romance, Santorini, and moonlit swims off the south shore of Crete. Sometimes tourism is about barf bags, gastrointestinal Armageddon, and vacations turned into what feels like prison sentences.
A story out of picturesque and quaint Sissi, on Crete’s north shore, reminds us how life’s unpleasantries can follow us – anywhere. The Daily Mail story from the Maritimo Beach Hotel tells of dozens of British vacationers vomiting their buffet line goodies or stuck on the porcelain throne with diarrhea.
Apparently, the seaside village has been dealing with some dogged intestinal bug for some time. But, the really bad news is that these tourists say EasyJet and Jet2 have continued to send customers to the hotel even weeks after the bug was first detected.
Wendy Hampton, 44, from Leigh, Greater Manchester, took her family on vacation, unaware the tiny coast town had any such issues. Here’s her comment via Daily Mail after arriving at the hotel:
“After working all through Covid we booked a holiday with Jet2. We arrived on Sunday and ate dinner in the restaurant. By Monday morning we were all vomiting.”
Hampton, who is a nurse, said the hotel was giving really bad advice and solutions that would only make the spread of the bug worse. Other families complained that they had been made to stay in their rooms in order to reduce the spread of the bug. According to the guests, Jet2 at first denied there was a problem but later admitted the village had an issue.
Ambulances have been delivering Maritimo Beach Hotel guests to hospitals for some weeks now. More stories of violent vomiting and illness make this tale a Crete travel horror story to remember. Most of those affected have been cooped up over the Covid pandemic for nearly two years, which makes this nightmare all the sadder. As for Jet2, their spokesman said:
“Like some other tour operators, we have been made aware that some customers at this hotel have felt unwell.”
They also said there is nothing to suggest that the cause of these illnesses has anything to do with the hotel. The management of the Maritimo Beach Hotel declined to comment to Daily Mail. Meanwhile, users on Tripadvisor say the illness is isolated to a single hotel and that Sissi has not had a problem overall. Most of those addressing questions about what appears to be a norovirus, are mid-level TA contributors, and some are local experts.
Here’s good advice from the CDC, on symptoms and precautions for this highly contagious virus. Risk factors include unsanitary food preparation and sharing close quarters.
A final note, Maritimo Beach Hotel has had nearly perfect reviews (4.5 for 678 reviews) for some years now. This sickness issue is already causing their ratings (some collected in partnership with Jet2holidays) to fall quite a bit.