Many Brits who travelled abroad in last 18 months had embarrassing travel mishap

More than half of the lucky Brits who managed to travel abroad over the last 18 months experienced some sort of embarrassing holiday mishap, research has revealed.

The most common errors related to preparation – with 34 percent failing to have the correct papers to get through international borders, and another third forgetting their COVID-19 travel docs.

But a third suffered the time-old problem and were left literally red-faced – and red-skinned – after getting sunburn.

More than a quarter (28 percent) left a passport at home, 27 percent booked a hotel for the wrong date – and 24 percent took the wrong currency with them.

Four in ten of those surveyed by website think they’re more likely to experience a travel mishap after not travelling for so long, with 37 percent admitting it’s "back to school time" for a refresher on how to prepare for their next trip. has teamed up with blunder-prone holiday-lover Joey Essex to offer someone a £10,000 hotel voucher to let them have another go at organising a holiday.

Joey Essex said: “I always say a holiday fail is a holiday tale like. After being at home for so long it’s no wonder us Brits have been making travel mistakes all over the shop.”

The survey of 2,000 UK adults also found nearly a third (29 percent) have missed a flight during their lives, while 27 percent admitted turning up to the airport on the wrong date for their flight.

And almost a quarter (23 percent) of those surveyed via OnePoll have headed to the wrong airport altogether.

West Midlands is the holiday disaster capital of the UK, with 73 percent admitting to a mishap when travelling post-pandemic.

Packing liquids over the limit (40 percent), speaking the wrong language (38 percent) and getting sunburnt (30 percent) also make up the top ten mistakes.

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The top destination for a £10,000 dream holiday was mainland USA (31 percent), followed by Hawaii (25 percent), Japan (22 percent), Barbados (20 percent) and St Lucia (18 percent).

Emma Tagg, head of global and EMEA brand communications at brand, said: “Over the past 18 months, travel has been hard – with 87 percent of Brits saying it’s more complicated than ever before.

“ is here to make travel feel easy again by giving Brits a chance to re-do all the things that didn’t quite go to plan on holiday.

“Forget about the time you booked the wrong hotel, missed your flight or forgot Nan at home, we are giving you a do-over.

"So, enter your travel fail now, and may the best blunder win – it’s that easy.”

To be in with a chance of winning a £10,000 holiday, entrants have to share their funniest travel fail on’s Twitter page @hotelsdotcomuk, between 8th October – 18th October 2021.


  1. Didn't read the government guidelines properly before leaving, so didn't have the correct documents
  2. Didn't have what I needed to get through international borders
  3. Hand luggage was too big and had to pay for it
  4. Got badly sunburnt
  5. Spoke the wrong language while abroad
  6. Packed liquids over 100ml in hand luggage
  7. Left passport/boarding pass at home
  8. Lost wallet
  9. Got locked out of hotel room
  10. Forgot Covid-19 travel documents
  11. Lost luggage at the airport
  12. Suitcase split open and everything fell out of it in public
  13. Booked hotel for the wrong dates
  14. Got food poisoning from local food
  15. Got ripped off by a local taxi company
  16. Didn't pack the right things
  17. Turned up at the wrong hotel
  18. Left a friend/family member at home
  19. Got lost on public transport
  20. Went to the wrong airport

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