British man on stag-do cruise wakes up 'on fire'

British man on stag-do cruise wakes up 'on fire' PA

A British man has told how he fell asleep at a bar on a 'booze cruise' in Amsterdam, and woke up on fire and in agony.

James Bailey, 28, from Lanarkshire, is now seeking legal advice after owners of the boat, DFDS Seaways, refuse to accept any responsibility for the accident, according to

He told the Daily Mail: "After a few drinks I fell asleep at a table on the eighth floor bar. Most of my friends were either asleep or back in their rooms.

"I suddenly awoke in extreme agony and quickly realised my clothes were on fire.

"The bartender assisted in removing my shirt and putting out the flames.

"I burned my hand which instantly blistered to the size of a grape."

Bailey says there were around 20 to 30 people in the bar, but no one can tell him how he came to be on fire.

He said bar staff helped him put out the flames, but not before he suffered first, second and third degree burns.

He added: "I have constant pain, I am suffering from insomnia and night terrors, and I am unable to carry out basic daily tasks.

"I have also been referred for psychological help so I can get on with my life.

"I feel so helpless because I can't get closure. I want answers."

A spokesman for DFDS Seaways said they were unable to comment.

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British man on stag-do cruise wakes up 'on fire'

This is really frowned upon – and some cruise lines have banned 'chair hogging' completely.

You may happy exploring a destination on your own – particularly if it's somewhere you've visited before. But there are usually some amazing experiences on offer, from jeep safaris in Jamaica to dolphin exploration in Dominica and a classical concert in St Petersburg, so it's definitely worth checking them out.

Unless you can afford to book an extra cabin for your luggage (and we have heard of some very rich passengers doing this), average staterooms don't have masses of storage space. So just pack a capsule wardrobe – although it's always worth taking a couple of swimsuits so one can dry while you wear the other one.

Some passengers decide that because they've already been to a place they don't need to get off at a port – but there is always something new to discover, particularly if your ship offers 'destination immersion' shore experiences, or even just to get a change of scene. Many cruises have one (maybe more) days at sea on a cruise, so plenty of time to hang around the ship then.

OK, if you have really strong willpower, you *may* be able to avoid all the gourmet food (and there are usually lots of salads and healthy options available). But with so much excellent cuisine on offer it would be a shame to miss out on more the more indulgent creations from the likes of Marco Pierre White and patissier Eric Lanlard.

Of course holidaying with your family is a fantastic opportunity to spend quality time together – but cruise ships have amazing kids' clubs, with every possible whim catered for. Not only does it give your children a chance to make new friends and try different experiences, but it will give you a little alone time too. For example, on Oriana, Aurora and Azura, the kids' clubs are open until late – ideal if you want to give the kids an early supper and then enjoy dinner a deux knowing they're in safe hands.

It's compulsory. Plus, you'll also discover how to put on a life jacket (not as easy as it looks) and what a muster station is.

Joining the other passengers on deck as your ship pulls away from the dock is something very special and adds to that 'golden age of cruise' feel. There will usually be cocktails on offer so you can toast the start of your holiday, too (although check before you take one, as some cruise lines do charge for these).

The cabin staff work incredibly hard, and are often away from their families for months on end – so show your appreciation. Some cruise packages include tips – check what's included in yours and if you want to leave a little extra in an envelope, it will be gratefully received.

You can do this up to a point – it is your holiday, after all. But if you want to make sure your restaurant seating is at the right time or you can have that fabulous spa treatment (alfresco massage, anyone?), you'll need to do a little planning. Don't feel you have to do everything though – if you overschedule you'll just feel pressured.


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