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Last Updated: Sunday, 9 July 2006, 23:00 GMT 00:00 UK
Thailand tops holiday hazard poll
A beach in Thailand
Thailand's beautiful coastline draws thousands of UK tourists each year
British tourists heading to Thailand face the highest risk of suffering traffic accidents, theft or food poisoning, a survey has said.

Researchers found that tourists in South Africa, the 2010 World Cup hosts, were most likely to suffer violent robberies or lose luggage in transit.

Austria was the country where tourists were most likely to suffer a skiing or snowboarding accident.

The survey was compiled by Norwich Union Travel Insurance.

Figures revealed the Czech Republic topped the poll for pickpockets, while those in the Caribbean faced the biggest risk from insect bites and stings.

Our research shows that you need to take a little extra care in certain countries
Dawn McMullan Norwich Union

The safest place to holiday was Ireland followed by Belgium, Holland, Germany and France.

The official website for tourism in Thailand advises tourists not to walk alone on quiet streets or deserted areas.

Dawn McMullan, travel product manager at Norwich Union, said: "The purpose of our research is not to worry tourists looking forward to their summer holidays, just to make them aware of what can go wrong when they're away from home."

She advised travellers to take the same precautions abroad as they did in the UK.

Ms McMullan added: "Our research shows that you need to take a little extra care in certain countries and of course make sure you are adequately covered by travel insurance."

The survey was based on more than 60,000 claims made to Norwich Union in 2005.

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