independent

Sunday 20 April 2014

Fifteen jailbreak teams stuck abroad

The students have flown all around the world as part of the charity challenge.

This year's Jailbreak challenge may be over, but 15 teams of jet-setting students have yet to find a way of getting back to Ireland.

The teams with little funds for travel or accommodation have travelled as far as they can from Ireland as part of the charity event. The winning team made it to Sydney without spending a cent of their own money. However, funds will go towards Saint Vincent de Paul and Amnesty International.

More than 80 teams from NUI Galway, UCC and Trinity College Dublin took part in the weekend-long event, but now a handful of teams are finding it difficult to get back home.

Students in Verona, Tenerife, Stockholm, Paris and other far-flung locations are running out of cash and phone credit, with some students getting quite nervous, according to joint national organiser Jack Cantillon. He added that all teams were aware from the beginning that they must find their own way back to Ireland.

"The participants are hugely aware of it. They all signed a disclaimer before they left saying it’s their responsibility to get home," he said.

“The guys in Stockholm are a little bit worried, they say their living the jailbreak dream."

Mr Cantillion, a 4th year law student in TCD, said they are doing their best to find ways of getting the teams home.

"There’s a little bit of nerves, but we’re doing our best to get their home. We’re trying to charm airlines into letting them come home for free."

Mr Cantillon took part in jailbreak last year. His team made it to Sydney, but ran out of time, narrowly missing out on winning the competition. Some teams had difficulties getting home last year. The winning team were sent home courtesy of singer Chris De Burgh, who paid for their plane tickets home from Argentina.

"Some teams are waiting on their 'lady in red' this year," Mr Cantillon joked.

He said the best way to jet around the world on the cheap is through airmiles, which benefited him last year.

"When it comes to airmiles, it means you only have to find someone to pay taxes," he said.

To donate to jailbreak charities, visit jailbreak14.com.

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