A pair of Scots pals have told how they missed a wedding, a baby scan and a full day of wages due to a last minute flight cancellation.
Declan Lally, 29, and friend, Richard, 28, who are both from Helensburgh, had traveled to Seville for Wednesday’s Europe League final between Rangers and Frankfurt.
They had flown from Glasgow and Dublin to Faro, Portugal, with Ryanair on Monday last week, before getting a bus to the Spanish city the next day.
They were set to return from Faro to the UK via Bristol to meet a third person with easyJet the day after the match before getting a flight to Glasgow.
But after it was cancelled due to a technical issue, the pair had no chance of making their connection.
It meant the pair missed significant events as a result, with Declan missing a pal’s wedding and Richard a baby scan with his partner.
Declan explained: “I’m a self employed barber so I lost my fully-booked diary on the Friday when I was meant to be home.
“I also lost out on the Saturday, which had also been fully booked.
“I had two wedding parties booked in for haircuts – one on Friday and one on Saturday and I had to let them both down.
“I was even supposed to be attending my pals’ wedding on Sunday and so also had to let her down – though I managed to show up very late on Sunday night but I was falling asleep in the car over so it wasn’t much of a guest.
“It means she has lost the money she spent for me to attend her wedding, because I did not make it in time to see her get married and I missed her meal.”
Arriving at the airport in Faro via a taxi at 6pm on Thursday, well before the 10.20pm flight, Declan was told the flight was delayed by 10 minutes.
The news came after he had already checked in online and successfully made it through security, Bristol Live reports.
Declan could see people disembark the aircraft as he had his passport checked and prepared to board the plane and travel back home.
However, he was soon informed that the plane needed to refuel but they’d soon be on their way. The flight was cancelled at 11pm, meaning they had to spend the night on the airport floor.
Declan said that, as easyJet is represented by a third party company in Faro, nobody from the airline was around to speak to directly.
The stranded passengers were finally able to speak with the third party representatives for easyJet at 5.30am the following morning.
Declan claims the representatives simply showed them a phone number to call easyJet on and did not offer him any reimbursement.
Desperately trying to find another way home, the only options available to the pair were to change their flight to Liverpool or London.
It meant they then had to wait until the Saturday night to fly to Liverpool, having stayed at a hotel on the Friday, before getting a taxi to Manchester airport as there were no trains available until 10.30am.
They got one from Manchester Airport to Preston, another to Carlisle and a replacement bus to Glasgow due to the lack of trains.
Then, from Glasgow, they got another train home to Helensburgh, their hometown.
Declan said they had to pay for all of their travel (taxis, buses, new flights and train tickets), hotel and food expenses.
Declan added: “I sadly have five flights due with them. I’m nervous the same thing could happen again.
“I do not think I’ll book with them until I find out what compensation I’ll get because so far I’ve had to pay for the taxis to another hotel, pay for that hotel and food and get from Liverpool Airport to Glasgow.
“I think easyJet’s take on it is ‘we will book you free of charge on a different flight to anywhere in the UK’, but you have to then pay your hotel and keep the receipts to try and reclaim it back.
“We had no money left so I had to use my bank card and go into my savings. The only reason we did not book another flight with, say, Ryanair, there is because there was nothing left due to how busy the football crowds are.
“I just feel fortunate I had savings to try and sort something else out and we’re both young boys, but this happened to a couple with a baby and they couldn’t get any baby food or anything. It was a total riot.
“easyJet have a lot to answer for. They literally left us stranded with no way to get home for a few days. Nobody to help us.
“It’s shocking to think this happens. I’m going to try to get hold of easyJet for my refund and hope travel insurance covered me.”
A spokesperson from easyJet said: “We can confirm that this flight EZY6010 from Faro to Bristol was cancelled as a result of a technical issue onboard the aircraft due to operate the flight.
“We did all possible to minimize disruption, helping customers transfer to alternative flights for free, with availability on subsequent easyJet flights from Faro on the same day, and provided overnight hotel accommodation and meals for those who required them.
“Any customers who sourced their own hotel accommodation will be reimbursed for this and any other reasonable expenses and anyone who no longer wished to travel can receive a voucher or a full refund.
“We are very sorry for the inconvenience caused by the cancellation. The safety and wellbeing of our customers and crew is our highest priority. ”
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