Wed. Jun 29th, 2022

Thousands of easyJet passengers are out of position after the airline cancelled more than 30 flights at short notice.

The problems for easyJet passengers began yesterday afternoon, with flights from Belfast International to Faro and Bristol cancelled while passengers waited at the departure gate.

Passengers due to depart from those destinations were also told at short notice that they would not be travelling.

Rosaleen Gormley from Belfast was waiting at Bristol airport for her flight home.

“Suddenly at 7.53 am we got a text saying the flight was cancelled,” she told Stephen Nolan on BBC Radio Ulster. The message told passengers to book a hotel via the app, but Ms Gormley said it kept crashing and ground staff were of no help.

“We were told ‘You have to leave the building’ and we were herded out like animals, with nowhere to go.”

Ms Gormley said they were told: “If you don’t get out we’ll call the police and you’ll be arrested, and there’s a possibility you could be blacklisted.”

She managed to find somewhere to stay and flew back to Belfast on Monday morning.

Separately, easyJet cancelled the final flight from Belfast International to London Gatwick on Sunday night and the first on Monday morning.

At least 26 easyJet flights have been cancelled to and from Gatwick on Monday.

A passenger on the lunchtime departure to Venice told The Independent: “No easyJet staff to assist at Gatwick. No [easyJet] flights available. Just paid £280 each with Wizz Air.”

An airline that cancels a flight is required to provide an alternative departure on the same day if one is available – even if it means buying a ticket on rival carrier. In addition, passengers are entitled to compensation of £220 or £350 depending on the length of the flight.

A spokesperson for the airline said: “easyJet is operating around 1,650 flights today across the network with a quarter operating to and from Gatwick.

“Unfortunately we have made some cancellations overnight, in advance of customers arriving at the airport this morning.

“This is due to a number of different factors including reduced flow rates at Gatwick due to runway works yesterday, four aircraft experiencing technical issues and crew minimum rest requirements following yesterday’s flying.

“We have informed all customers and provided them with their options and are sorry for any inconvenience caused.”

British Airways continues to cancel upwards of 120 short- and medium-haul flights each day to and from its main base, London Heathrow.

BA says passengers are being given plenty of notice in order to make alternative arrangements.

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