Friday 19 July 2019

Outrage as Aer Lingus customers left stranded overnight after flight cancellation

An Aer Lingus flight from Lisbon to Cork was cancelled unexpectedly last night

The flight was cancelled for technical reasons
The flight was cancelled for technical reasons

Áine Kenny

Customers were left stranded in an airport overnight with no food vouchers or accommodation after an Aer Lingus flight from Lisbon to Cork was cancelled.

The EI891, due to fly yesterday at 10:45pm, was cancelled for technical reasons, according to Aer Lingus.

Angry customers took to Twitter to vent their anger over the "lack of communication" between the airline and the stranded passengers.

Customers also claimed they sat on the plane for two hours before the flight was cancelled.

"Farcical! Flight cancelled last night Lisbon to Cork - full flight disembarked after 1:00am, no support, no clarification, left to our own devices... about 50 people slept in the airport... still no flight yet. Appalling, unacceptable treatment from Aer Lingus," said one unhappy flyer on Twitter.

"Lisbon to Cork flight with Aer Lingus at 10.45pm cancelled last night. We were disembarked from flight at 1am with no hotels provided overnight or meal vouchers issued as of yet at 9.10am. Still awaiting confirmation of rescheduled flight. Shocking bad service!" said another disgruntled passenger.

"Planeload of people on flight from Lisbon to Cork last night abandoned to fend for themselves. Families with young children and wheelchair bound people stranded with no support. Appalling service!" said another. Aer Lingus replied to this tweet saying that their agents were working on re-booking the affected passengers and they apologised for the delays. 

"I know about the obvious delay having spent the last 16 hours stuck at Lisbon airport. When you have children under 4 years old sleeping on the floor in toilets, no confirmed flight and no sign of any Aer Lingus staff it's just not good enough," the delayed passenger said to Aer Lingus.

Another person on Twitter said that their parents were stranded in Portugal.

"My parents have been stranded in Lisbon airport over 12 hours. No accommodation, no food vouchers and no communication. Flight staff who left the plane last night after it was finally cancelled were taken away. No representative on the ground from Aer Lingus," they said.

"My dad has long term health condition that needs managing. He needs access to hygiene facilities and has medical materials that will run out if delays are prolonged. Called Aer Lingus and was told that re-scheduling flight is responsibility of the airport."

Aer Lingus released a statement about the cancellation, apologising to customers for the disruption.

"While our Guest Relations team sought to book hotel accommodation for disrupted guests, availability was extremely limited in the Lisbon region due to a large-scale event taking place there," Aer Lingus said in a statement.

"Regrettably some guests had to [stay] overnight at the airport – those guests who managed to secure their own accommodation will be reimbursed accordingly.

"The Aer Lingus Operations team are doing all they can to reinstate the flight for as early as possible today – however due to airport slot restrictions at Lisbon this may not be possible until early this evening.

"Guests are being regularly updated by SMS and email as soon as new information is available. Our team are continuing their efforts throughout the day to secure an earlier departure from Lisbon and will notify guests accordingly.

"We sincerely apologise to guests for the inconvenience caused but we wish to assure them that our teams are doing all they can to resolve the situation as quickly as possible."

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