Passengers board Wizz Air flight twice only to have it cancelled

Passengers experienced delays of four hours as they waited for a flight that never departed  (Getty Images)
Passengers experienced delays of four hours as they waited for a flight that never departed (Getty Images)

Passengers on a Wizz Air flight from Cardiff to Corfu were left frustrated after they were boarded and deplaned twice ‒ before the flight was eventually cancelled.

Holidaymakers travelling to the Greek island on Sunday morning (7 August) experienced delays of several hours after the flight was hit with both technical and staffing issues, leading to its eventual cancellation.

Sean Glossop, a passenger on the flight, told Wales Online that the first delay was due to a technical fault with the plane.

“The flight was supposed to leave at 7.25am and everything was going smoothly,” said Mr Glossop.

“We boarded the plane and then once the engines started there was apparently a ‘technical fault’.

“We were told that they had to call an engineer out and that we would have to wait an hour on the plane.

“They did the classic ‘turn it off and back on again’ which didn’t work, so after an hour sitting on the plane we were sent back to the terminal for another couple of hours while the engineer apparently replaced some parts.”

He said they were provided with a £4 voucher each “which were literally enough to buy half a sandwich” back in the airport.

After waiting for hours, the passengers boarded the plane for a second time, but soon learned that they would not be taking off due to what the airline described as “staffing issues”.

They were told the pilots had run out of working hours but another crew was on standby to take over, said Mr Glossop. The tired group disembarked the aircraft once again so the new crew could board.

However, once the passengers returned to the terminal, they were informed that the flight was cancelled, Mr Glossop said.

“All in all, they kept us waiting for around four hours whilst boarding and deboarding us twice, with absolutely no help from anyone working for the airline to rebook passengers,” Mr Glossop said.

“Taking into account getting to the airport for the flight, most people were waiting at the airport for around six or seven hours for a flight which never went.”

Mr Glossop and his friend were able to book the last two seats on a TUI flight to Corfu the following morning, but said many other passengers had had to cancel holidays or wait several days to depart.

When long delays occur on flights, air crew can run out of shift hours, forcing flights to be cancelled.

According to the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), the legal maximum of working hours for commercial pilots is 100 hours in any 28 consecutive days and 900 hours per year, to prevent fatigue and ensure safety.

The debacle is the latest in a series of travel disruptions that have plagued the aviation industry this summer.

In July, holidaymakers travelling on a Wizz Air flight from Corfu to Cardiff saw their plane divert to Bristol after an incident at Cardiff Aiport, leaving passengers hundreds of pounds out of pocket as they made their own travel arrangements home.

The Independent has contacted Wizz Air for comment.

Published by anthonyhayble

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