Brits Fear Shark Attacks on Foreign Holidays


Posted in General Travel Travel Insurance, travel tips on 16 June 2024

Heading to the beach for a relaxing holiday abroad but worried about sharks? It's a common concern for many beachgoers. But understanding the risks and facts about shark attacks could help ease your mind and ensure a safe and enjoyable foreign holiday.

Understanding the Risk of Shark Attacks

While shark attacks receive a lot of media attention, they are actually quite rare. According to the International Shark Attack File (ISAF), the probability of being attacked by a shark in any given year is about 1 in 11.5 million. This means that despite the high visibility and fear often associated with shark attacks, they are quite rare. The likelihood of a fatal shark attack is even lower, with fewer than 10 fatalities worldwide each year. Most beaches have safety measures in place, and sharks typically avoid humans. Compared to other risks, such as drowning or being struck by lightning, the danger posed by sharks is minimal.

Factors That Affect Shark Activity

Sharks are more active during certain times of the day and year. They tend to feed during dawn and dusk, and certain locations and seasons can see increased shark activity. Changes in ocean conditions, such as water temperature and prey availability, can also influence shark behaviour and distribution. Understanding these patterns can help you make safer choices about when and where to swim.

Safety Tips for Avoiding Shark Encounters
  • Swim in Groups: Sharks are more likely to attack solitary individuals.
  • Avoid Wearing Jewellery: Reflective jewellery can resemble fish scales and attract sharks.
  • Stay Close to Shore: You're less likely to encounter sharks in shallow waters.
  • Avoid Swimming at Dusk or Dawn: These are peak feeding times for sharks.
  • Heed Local Warnings: Always follow local advice and respect posted warnings about shark sightings.
What to Do if You Encounter a Shark

In the unlikely event that you encounter a shark, it’s important to remain calm and do not make any sudden movements. Try to maintain eye contact and slowly back away towards the shore, if possible. If a shark attacks, defend yourself by targeting its eyes and gills, which are the most sensitive areas.

While the fear of shark attacks is understandable, the actual risk is minimal. By understanding shark behaviour and following safety tips, you can significantly reduce your chances of a dangerous encounter. Enjoy your holiday knowing you've taken the necessary precautions to stay safe. And remember you're more likely to face other everyday risks rather than a dangerous shark encounter.

Going on Holiday? Don’t Forget to Buy Your Travel Insurance Cover

For added peace of mind, safeguard your journey with Voyager Plus Travel Insurance. Voyager Plus Travel Insurance offers 4 levels of cover, Single Trip and Annual Multi-Trip options, and includes cover for the following:

  • Emergency Medical Expenses – up to £10,000,000
  • Cancellation Cover – up to £10,000
  • Baggage Cover – up to £3,500
  • 100s of Fun Activities Covered as Standard
  • Kids Go Free – Dependants in full-time education up to 20 years old

You can get a Voyager Plus Travel Insurance quote by clicking the “Get A Quote” button below or by calling our UK Based Call Centre on 01483 806 680.

Whether you’re looking for Travel Insurance for Europe or further afield, Family Travel Insurance, or a policy just for you, alleviate some of your worries with the peace of mind a Voyager Plus Travel Insurance Single Trip or Annual Multi-Trip policy provides.

Get a Quote

To discover exactly what a Voyage Plus Travel Insurance policy cover, please see our policy wording.

By taking out a Travel Insurance plan, you are not only providing yourself with peace of mind but also cover for many eventualities including medical care following medical emergencies.

This article is for information and entertainment purposes only. It does not constitute advice in any way. The information provided here is correct at the time of writing however please check the latest policy wording for the latest terms, conditions, and exclusions.


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