Page last updated at 09:24 GMT, Tuesday, 12 August 2008 10:24 UK

British arrests soar 32% in Spain

Advertisement

Footage from recent years of tourists, including Britons, partying abroad

The number of Britons arrested in Spain rose by almost a third last year, says an annual Foreign Office report.

There were 2,032 Britons detained from April 2006 to March 2007, up 32% on the 12 months before, figures showed.

Spain - the country most visited by Britons at about 17 million - also saw the highest number of lost passports (6,710) and hospital admissions (695).

The Foreign Office said many arrests abroad were due to "behaviour caused by excessive drinking".

Foreign Office Minister Meg Munn said: "The report highlights what can go wrong on holiday. It is a reminder to all that taking out comprehensive travel insurance is a crucial part of your holiday planning and not something that should be sacrificed to save a few pounds.

"We are concerned that drink does play a part in a number of situations."

Thailand had the highest proportion of injuries and deaths among Britons, according to the British Behaviour Abroad report.

Cyprus had the highest proportion of arrests - 377 from over 1.5 million British visitors and residents - followed by the US with 1,415 arrests from more than seven million, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The 230 arrests in UAE from about 1.1 million Britons mainly related to the country's zero tolerance on drugs.

FROM THE TODAY PROGRAMME

There was a 42% increase in arrests in France, but this involved just 153 Britons. France was the second most popular destination with 15 million visitors and residents.

Spain and Greece had the most reported rape incidents (29 and 28 respectively) followed by Turkey (21).

Thailand was singled out as the country with proportionally the highest death rate and hospital cases among Britons.

The Foreign Office said the country had one of the world's highest road traffic accident rates and that most of the hospital admissions were the result of motorbike accidents, particularly in the southern islands.

Some Asian countries showed a very high rate of "serious assistance cases", including arrests, hospital admissions, deaths and reported rapes.

Indonesia topped the list with 10 in every 1,000 Britons needing consular assistance, with Pakistan second (1.95) followed by India (1.37) and Thailand (1.18).

HAVE YOUR SAY
Anyone who goes abroad on holiday is an ambassador for their home country
Eleanor, Glasgow

In a separate survey by the Foreign Office, two-thirds of almost 2,000 British holidaymakers admitted they would be spending less on holiday preparations this year because of the credit crunch.

The government has urged people not to cut corners on travel insurance.

And the Foreign Office advises Britons going abroad to check laws and local customs in areas they planned to visit before travelling in order to reduce the likelihood of experiencing problems.

More travel insurance policies were taken out in 2007 (20 million) than in 2006 (15 million), according to the Association of British Insurers.

The Foreign Office statistics relate to British visitors and also to British nationals living abroad for a year or longer.

Click on the column headings below to sort the table by category

WHERE BRITONS NEEDED MOST CONSULAR ASSISTANCE 2006-7
CountryBritish visits (millions)ArrestsHospital admissionsDeathsReported rapes
Spain172,0326951,59129
France14.81532463856
US6.51,41575952
Italy3.5381711562
Greece323060213128
Germany2.37162292941
Turkey1.92341376921
Netherlands1.92016180
Cyprus1.5377100819
UAE1.123020512
Thailand0.861413242692
Australia0.74747761
India0.646451261
Pakistan0.28190140
Indonesia0.14182520
Source: FCO


SEE ALSO
Brits heading east for sunshine
17 Jul 08 |  England

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC iD

Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2016 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific