Air Canada pas­sen­gers felt aban­doned af­ter 48-hour de­lay

The Hamilton Spectator - - CANADA & WORLD - THE CANA­DIAN PRESS

TORONTO — An Air Canada flight that saw pas­sen­gers stranded in Manch­ester, Eng­land, for two days landed in Toronto on Sun­day af­ter­noon.

The airline said it will be in touch with the af­fected cus­tomers for a full re­fund.

The flight to Toronto was sched­uled to leave Manch­ester on Fri­day, but Air Canada said as many as 197 pas­sen­gers had to wait un­til Sun­day be­fore tak­ing off.

An Air Canada spokesper­son called it an “un­for­tu­nate sit­u­a­tion” caused by me­chan­i­cal prob­lems and crew duty re­stric­tions.

Is­abelle Arthur said in an email to The Cana­dian Press that the airline wanted to “apol­o­gize for the ex­tended de­lay.”

Arthur said the sit­u­a­tion didn’t meet Air Canada’s stan­dards and “we are sorry we’ve let our cus­tomers down.”

Canada’s largest airline was tak­ing heat from the stranded pas­sen­gers over the week­end.

One per­son tweeted “hor­ren­dous ex­pe­ri­ence.

Stuck in Manch­ester for 2 days and no one has been in con­tact to tell us what’s go­ing on.”

Another tweet to Air Canada said “A sec­ond night in Manch­ester ... due to more flight de­lays. Air Canada this is not how to treat your pas­sen­gers.”

Manch­ester res­i­dents Me­lanie Best and her hus­band had booked the flight with plans to at­tend a wed­ding cel­e­bra­tion in Toronto.

In an email to The Cana­dian Press late Satur­day night, a frus­trated Best de­scribed their long and try­ing or­deal.

She said they boarded the plane Fri­day af­ter a two-hour de­lay, then sat on the tar­mac for the next five hours while me­chan­ics tried un­suc­cess­fully to fix a hy­draulic pump.

Af­ter the flight was fi­nally can­celled the pas­sen­gers were put up in a ho­tel and in­structed to re­turn to the air­port the fol­low­ing day.

How­ever, af­ter check­ing in again Satur­day morn­ing, Best said re­peated de­lays kept pas­sen­gers stuck in the air­port lounge un­til the early evening.

“Come 6 p.m. pas­sen­gers were get­ting re­ally stressed and an­gry and all gather­ing by cus­tomer in­for­ma­tion de­mand­ing more in­for­ma­tion,” she said.

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