A mother’s dream of going to the white sand beaches of Hurghada for two weeks turned into a vacation of hell when her family was plagued by infected mosquito bites and embarrassed by drug-induced bathroom accidents at the resort.
Tracey, 58, a teaching assistant from Leamington Spa, took her daughter Britt, 25, and son-in-law Liam, 31, to Egypt in 2022. staff dealt with fights and the mystery of a dead dog.
Unable to fly home or relocate, Tracey and her family had to spend two weeks sick in a dirty room at a resort that they said reeked of sewage.
Tracey, who asked that the last name be withheld, spoke to MailOnline about her vacation from hell in Hurghada.
Liam (left), Britt (centre) and Tracey (right) pictured together at the start of the 2022 holiday
Tracey got bites on her leg the first night, which became infected
“I’ve been to Egypt many times and nothing like this has ever happened to me,” said Tracey
Tracey booked a relaxing holiday with her family ahead of the summer rush in April 2022. It was her daughter’s first time abroad in 13 years and her son-in-law’s first overseas holiday.
And ‘what could go wrong, it just went wrong!’ she told MailOnline.
From the first night, the family got mosquito bites on their ankles. When they tried to clean the wounds with hot water in the bathroom, they found that there was none.
The staff assured the problem would be rectified but, as Tracey told her travel agent after the trip, ‘I was without hot water for four days [or] shower or wash my feet and ankles.’
Tracey told MailOnline, “I was longing for a warm and clean bath to soak my legs and ankles in because they were so sore and heavy.”
The bites soon became infected, yellow lesions oozing as her feet swelled and made it nearly impossible to walk. A bite to her eyelid left her face purple and swollen for two days.
The bathroom, she said, was filthy. She told MailOnline that the bath was “thick with grime” and home to a cockroach.
The resort reeked of sewage and the public toilets were “dirty,” she claimed in her report after returning home.
Tracey had to hobble back and forth on swollen, dirty ankles for days to solve the problems herself, as the front desk assured someone would come.
After four days of waiting, Tracey said, five men came to her room to inspect the leaking air conditioner.
And by morning it was broken again.
“Everything that went wrong took days and days [to fix],’ she explained.
When she complained to the hotel she said the receptionist replied ‘what do you want me to do? It’s normal for the air conditioner to leak a little.’
Every day the cleaner mopped it up and every day it flooded again.
Tracey is pictured with a bite to her eyelid during antibiotic treatment at the hotel in April 2022. The swelling subsided within two days, she said
Tracey and her daughter were given various medications for the bites and infections
As the wounds got worse, Tracey sought help from a doctor on the scene, who diagnosed the infected bites and prescribed antibiotics.
After reportedly offering to see Britt for free, he “went back on his word” and began messaging the family, “When are you paying?” “Can you call now?”
She later told her travel agent that the infections wiped out any chance to enjoy the vacation: “I couldn’t snorkel or swim with the dolphins on the boat trip I took. I couldn’t sunbathe properly because I had to cover my ankles and legs.
“It really felt like a pointless endeavor.”
The day after getting her shot, Tracey had an “extremely loose bowel movement that was uncontrollable” at the patio bar.
Britt, also suffering from bites, has to run after her around the resort to clean up.
Tracey said she was “extremely embarrassed and still embarrassed because everyone could see what happened.”
Her clothes were “totally ruined” and had to be thrown away.
“I was just a complete mess,” she told MailOnline.
“I have been to Egypt many times over the past 17 years and have never experienced anything so humiliating.”
She said the only funny thing about the holiday was having to clap outside the cubicle to leave a light on a motion sensor while she was seriously ill.
All the while, Tracey described scenes of chaos around the resort.
According to Tracey’s testimony, the family witnessed a member of staff being beaten by six men during their break.
The dead dog was thrown outside the front of the hotel and had to be removed… you couldn’t write it.
“It started around noon and lasted until 4:30 a.m.,” she reported. “The fight started at the bar on the terrace and ended in the restaurant… Finally, they pulled the doorman into the restaurant so they could kick him in without anyone watching.”
“I expect this kind of behavior in Benidorm,” she told her travel agent.
It was the first time in 13 years that her daughter, who suffers from anxiety and PTSD, was abroad.
“The vacation should have been a reset for her. She had an accident five years ago and this was her time to get away from it all… and it was just awful.”
Elsewhere, a guest had left a dead dog at the front desk.
“It was wrapped in a blanket and she put it on a chair. This caused another guest to start yelling at her and they ended up in a shouting match, along with the staff.
The dead dog was thrown in front of the hotel and had to be removed by an employee. You couldn’t write it.’
She told MailOnline: ‘If I could have traveled back to the UK after a few days I certainly would have. Because of my swollen feet and ankles, I was very worried about the possibility of escape which made my condition much worse than it already was.
“The thought of thrombosis genuinely worried me, so I felt I had no choice but to stay and continue the antibiotics until I ‘personally’ felt safe and confident to travel home again.”
A photo of Hurghada, Egypt taken by the family during their trip in April 2022
An image of the resort in Hurghada, Egypt where Tracey and her family stayed in April 2022
An excerpt from the video shows the hotel in Hurghada. Tracey says her room was dusty, with the balcony doors still filthy and covered in handprints from previous guests who had stayed
Finally it was time to go home – and the transfer to the airport did not arrive.
“We were told it would be out at 6pm. We waited 30-40 minutes and had to order an Uber ourselves.
“Absolutely diabolical,” she wrote. “We couldn’t even get away.”
After returning home, Tracey had to visit doctors in the UK due to a new infection.
Tracey contacted the organizers seeking compensation for the difficulties encountered, as well as the suffering and disappointment incurred as a result.
She said her agency offered £850 after a full inspection, the price of the hotel, which she accepted.
The Hotel Aqua Beach Resort in Hurghada has since closed. Tracey’s travel agency told MailOnline that the resort has since reopened under different management and undergone a refurbishment, with significantly better reviews.