Daily Express

Britons stranded in Europe as 200 flights cancelled

- By Chris Riches

TENS of thousands of travellers were stranded over the Jubilee weekend after around 200 flights were axed.

A chaotic combinatio­n of staff shortages, air-traffic control restrictio­ns and a Luton Airport power failure led to well over 80 Sunday cancellati­ons, with more than 100 grounded on Saturday alone.

Many anxious British holidaymak­ers and families are stuck at foreign airports as a result.

EasyJet said it axed about 80 flights yesterday “due to the ongoing challengin­g operating environmen­t”, hitting over 12,000 people.

There have also been cancellati­ons to Wizz Air, Vueling and British Airways flights.


Alexander Coombs, one holidaymak­er affected, fumed: “I have received a text saying my flight has been cancelled from Berlin to Bristol today so I am now stranded in Berlin. I cannot get hold of anyone to help me from easyJet. The next flight is Thursday.”

Kam Hosseini was stuck in Faro, Portugal, after his Saturday evening Wizz Air flight to Cardiff was grounded “minutes before check in by text message”.

He said: “No representa­tive from the airline at the airport, just given a piece of paper and told the next flights to the UK we can get on are Wednesday onwards.

“Stuck in Faro and no sign of any flights anytime soon.”

Yesterday’s easyJet cancellati­ons come after Gatwick Airport saw 25 departures and 22 arrivals axed on Saturday.

Easyjet said: “We are very sorry and fully understand the disruption this will have caused for our customers. We are focused on getting them to their destinatio­n as soon as possible.”

All stricken passengers are entitled to: alternativ­e flights, including on a rival airline; a hotel room until they can travel; and, if the airline is to blame, compensati­on.

EasyJet said it had extended its customer service hours, and was helping those affected find hotel accommodat­ion where required. At Bristol, at least a dozen easyJet flights were axed. Most passengers received just a few hours’ notice.


It came as about 3,000 passengers bound for Luton yesterday were diverted to other airports as a temporary power cut affected air traffic control systems.

Legal expert Lisa Webb, of consumer rights group Which?, said: “These shameful scenes are the result of an industry in which some airlines feel they can get away with ignoring consumer rights and acting with near impunity. Passenger rights need to be strengthen­ed. The Government must drop plans to cut compensati­on. The Civil Aviation Authority must be given the power to issue direct fines to hold airlines to account.”

Meanwhile, Paris to London travellers were left “tired, frustrated and defeated” yesterday after overhead power line problems led to the cancellati­on of several Eurostar trains.

UK-bound passengers told of eight-hour waits at Gare du Nord station. Eurostar said trains should run normally today.

 ?? Picture: LNP ?? Manchester Airport in chaos yesterday
Picture: LNP Manchester Airport in chaos yesterday

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