Family left in tears as Disney World dream vacation ‘ruined due to airline error’

The Miller family turned up at Birmingham Airport for their dream holiday on May 30, only to be blocked by KLM when airline officials broke the devastating news

The Miller family had to spend £2,600 to salvage their Disney World vacation in Florida after a flight went wrong
The Miller family had to spend £2,600 to salvage their Disney World vacation in Florida after a flight went wrong

A family’s dream holiday to Disney World has been ruined because of an “airline mistake” that has left them £2,600 to spend.

The Miller family showed up at Birmingham Airport with their two children, aged 7 and 13, for the trip of a lifetime – but were prevented from boarding by KLM on May 30.

Sheldon Miller, 47, was forced to pay to salvage her vacation after employees at the family’s airline broke the news that they were booked on a return flight from Orlando, Fla., but not the outward journey. BirminghamLive reported.

It appeared that a change to the booking had been properly recorded in KLM’s systems, although Mr Miller had received an email confirmation of the change.

With her dream trip in shambles and heartbroken children “in tears”, Sheldon booked overnight hotels at Birmingham Airport before spending £2,600 on alternative flights with Aer Lingus.

The experience cast a shadow over an otherwise enjoyable vacation at Disney World. And then the family faced yet another nightmare journey on the way back when KLM informed them they were unable to board their original June 9 flight.

Sheldon Miller booked overnight hotels at Birmingham Airport before campaigning for the heartbroken children


Sheldon Miller / BPM Media)

Instead, Mr Miller’s family was flown by Virgin Atlantic from Florida to Heathrow, to Amsterdam and then to Birmingham.

The furious father, who is demanding that KLM refund the extra £2,600, said the whole thing has been an “absolutely ridiculous saga”.

The Nottingham father said: “It was the worst customer experience with a company that has ever happened at a country mile.”

Mr Miller changed the family’s outbound flights, originally scheduled for April 3, after his father was diagnosed with cancer.

After confirming the change and receiving a link to check-in through Delta airline, a partner of KLM, the family was told at the BHX gate that they were not registered for the May 30 flight.

The father said: “After waiting in line for an hour, we got to the check-in counter and they told us that we were not booked on the outbound flight, but we were booked on the return flight and there was no way to tell to board.

“At that point our seven-year-old daughter burst into tears and our 13-year-old son wasn’t very happy either, and neither were we.

“Then we spent three hours talking to someone at KLM, only to finally be told by a call center rep that we had to work it out on social media as they couldn’t do it. I’ve never heard anything so ridiculous in my life when it comes to business.”

Mr Miller tweeted KLM on May 30, saying: “KLM, we turned up at Birmingham Airport only to be told we are unable to board our flights to Orlando because your booking system has not matched our flight date change request.

“Following dozens of inquiries from us on the phone and in writing. Nobody helps.”

After finally making it to Disney on the Aer Lingus flight, his family faced the return journey via Heathrow and Amsterdam before returning to Birmingham on June 10.

After landing, an exhausted Mr. Miller said, “No one has strengthened in any way. The whole experience felt like massively passing the package without anyone at KLM even remotely interested in our customer problem, let alone willing to take responsibility for it.

“We have still not received any communication from KLM regarding the refund of our Aer Lingus flight and airport hotel stay.

He continued, “You can’t charge people the full fare and only deliver a half ride and constantly leave customers in the dark, guiding them from pillar to pillar and expecting them to give up and shut up.”

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Fry Electronics Team

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