Bush tucker Brits

Article date: 5 December 2005

Millions have caught the jungle adventure‘bug’

Millions of Brits have taken a leaf out of the"I’m A Celebrity" book and are in search of a walk on thewild side when it comes to holidays. Research released today fromNorwich Union Travel shows:

  • Brits are happy to sample local cuisine and over half (58%) willmunch on the more unusual witchetty grubs, cockroaches, snakesor grasshoppers
  • UK travellers can do without their creature comforts includingshowers (47%), deodorant (47%) and toilet paper (27%)
  • 34% of men and 20% of women said they would be happy to gowithout underwear
  • 42% of the nation would like to give an adventure holiday a goincluding rainforest canopy walking and jungle camping.

Grubs up?
Like Carole Thatcher andJilly Goolden a big majority of Brits (85%) think it’simportant to try local dishes on holiday and 58% would do so evenif it meant eating witchetty grubs, cockroaches, snakes orgrasshoppers.

Nearly half (46%) of us would chomp on kangaroo, over a third (37%)would snack on snakes, a fifth (20%) would guzzle grasshoppers and13% of people would wolf down Witchetty grubs.

Brits’ top bush tucker treats are:

  1. Kangaroo (47%)
  2. Snake (36%)
  3. Guinea Pig (23%)
  4. Grasshopper (20%)
  5. Ants (16%)
  6. Fish eyes (15%)
  7. Meal Worms (13%)
  8. Witchetty Grubs (13%)
  9. Cockroaches (7%)
  10. Yabbies (5%).

Creature comforts
It’s notjust Sid Owen and Co who have an appetite for roughing it. Nearlyhalf (47%) of Brits would happily do without a shower and the samenumber feel they don’t need deodorant, while a quarter (27%)say that they would get on fine without toilet paper! What’smore, three quarters (75%) of Brits say they wouldn’t evenbathe in a jungle pool - perhaps like David Dickinson they toowould take some cologne along to cover up the nasty whiff.

Walk on the wild side
Nearly half of Brits (42%) arekeen to follow in the footsteps of the celebs on the ITV show andgive adventurous activities a go. The most popular are:

  1. Rainforest canopy walking – like Ant & Dec
  2. Jungle camping – like all the celebs
  3. Abseiling – like Jimmy Osmond
  4. Bathing in a jungle pool – like Jenny Frost
  5. Skydiving – like Sheree Murphy.

Norwich Union Travel Insurance carried out theresearch to investigate trends in people’s holiday habits.Every year the insurance giant processes thousands of travelclaims, from minor to major and from common to absurd - fromfalling from camels, to incidents on the Great Wall of China andsprains and strains whilst mountain trekking.

Dawn McMullan at Norwich Union Travel Insurance, said: “Whileshows such as I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here oftenprompt people to try out what they have seen on TV, it’simportant to be aware of the risks involved and be properlyinsured.

“Kimberley Davies’ unfortunate accident highlighted theneed to be aware of the risks involved in taking part in adventureactivities and, of course, to be properly insured in case anythingdoes go wrong. It can be the difference between a minor drama and amajor crisis.”

Norwich Union’s top tips for stayingsafe in the jungle:

  1. Check with your doctor whether you need any vaccinations atleast 6 weeks before you travel. (Travel Assistant service in NUtravel policies can also do this)
  2. Make sure you’re fit and healthy before you go so youcan cope with the physical challenges
  3. Travel light – trawling through the jungle is hard workand so only take the essential clothes including supportive footwear and a light weight rain coat
  4. Don’t forget to bring a first aid kid in case ofaccidents, mossie repellent, boots to keep your feet covered,tummy tablets (eating witchety grubs!)
  5. For those going "down under", the sun and its UV rays areparticularly dangerous and so make sure you cover up with sunblock, sun glasses and sun hat and try and stay out of the raysbetween 11am and 3pm
  6. Swot up! Before you leave, read up on the creatures with anasty streak and what to do if you’re bitten
  7. Use an insect repellent, and keep your arms and legs coveredif there’s a chance of being bitten – follow theprecautions on avoiding malaria. Animal bites can lead to serious– and even fatal – infections
  8. If you are bitten or stung try and take a photograph of theanimal so you get the appropriate treatment, in particularspiders, snakes. Seek immediate medical attention
  9. To reduce risk of DVT on long flight, do some simple exercises– rotate your ankles and wiggle your toes – and get upand walk around if you can. Stay hydrated with regularnon-alcoholic drinks
  10. Don’t forget to get appropriate travel insurance.


Media contacts:
Matt Buchanan at Lexis PR on 0207908 6573 or 07766 914 746
Rebecca Holmes at Norwich Union Press Office on 01603 354 346 /07800 690731
Adam Cracknell at Norwich Union Press Office on 01603 684916 /07800 699517

Notes to editors:
Norwich Union commissioned ICM toconduct research amongst 1,000 adults across UK between 30 Novemberand 1 December 2005.

Norwich Union Travel Insurance
PremiumExamples for Individual cover:

  • Annual (Europe) no baggage cover = £42.82 / Annual Worldwide,(including USA and Canada) no baggage cover = £58.35
    (Figs as at Dec 2005)

Norwich Union Travel Service

  • Available to all Norwich Union Direct travel insurancecustomers, providing a travel booking service with a price matchpromise for hotel and flight bookings from expert travelconsultants. Also provides extras such as car hire, airport carparking and commission free travel money.
  • Annual travel insurance customers get additional benefitsincluding: 
    • 7.5% discount off the lowest high street prices for holidayand flight bookings
    • discounts of up to 60% on more than 20,000 hotels through anon-line booking service
    • access to a holiday planner service
    • free card protection cover

About Norwich Union Insurance

  • Norwich Union is the UK's largest insurer with a market shareof around 14 per cent.
  • With a focus on insurance for individuals and smallbusinesses, Norwich Union insures:
    • one in five households 
    • one in seven motor vehicles 
    • more than 800,000 businesses
  • Norwich Union products are available through a variety ofdistribution channels including brokers, corporate partners suchas banks and building societies and Norwich Union Direct.

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