Friends are stuck 1,300 miles from home for days in EasyJet flight chaos

Paige Smith and her flatmate Zack were stuck in Mallorca after easyJet canceled their flight back to Manchester Airport and the replacement was hit by a series of delays, meaning they missed their graduation ceremony

Paige Smith and her roommate Zack were stranded for two days
Paige Smith and her roommate Zack were stranded for two days

Two British friends were stuck abroad for days and missed a graduation ceremony after their easyJet flight was cancelled.

Paige Smith and her flatmate Zack flew from Manchester Airport to Palma, Mallorca on March 28 for a short holiday.

Staff shortages and a surge in international travelers have thrown Britain’s airports into disarray this month, and the pair were surprised when they got through for their outbound flight with no problems.

But her return home was a little more challenging, she reports Manchester evening news.

Paige woke up last Friday morning to pack her bags for the flight home – only to receive an email from the budget airline telling her the flight had been cancelled.

1,300 miles from home, she and Zack were desperately trying to figure out what happened.

Queues at Manchester Airport on Thursday morning


MEN media)

Unclaimed bags scattered in the return hall in Terminal 3


Alison Unwin/MEN Media)

They were told they would get a hotel room for the night and they could catch the next available flight.

But it meant missing her long-awaited graduation with friends and leaving Paige to let work clients down.

The 21-year-old said easyJet sent her the cancellation email at 4am, hours before they were due to depart.

She explained: “We had been rushing around that morning and were about to head to the airport when luckily I checked my email.

“Right off the bat we didn’t know what to do and I was supposed to be at work on Saturday too.”

The airport has attributed the chaos to staffing issues


Manchester evening news)

Paige and Zack were told the next flight was at 9:15 p.m. the next day.

But Paige said the airline’s mobile app showed the flight “kept being rescheduled” due to various delays.

The flight finally took off in the early hours of Sunday morning.

The airline has had to cancel several flights from Manchester this week, which has been blamed on “persistently high rates of crew illness”.

Paige and Zack were stranded over the weekend as the airline canceled more than 200 flights across the UK.

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The friends only had carry-on luggage, so they didn’t have to wait any longer when they returned to Manchester, as Paige described the airport as a “ghost town.”

“People were sleeping everywhere, it was so strange,” she added.

“We couldn’t believe how many suitcases had just been left behind, there were hundreds of them.”

An easyJet spokesman confirmed that a high level of staff absenteeism due to illness led to the initial cancellation and the further delays were due to air traffic control restrictions.

They apologized to Paige and said the company “did everything possible to minimize the impact of the disruption on customers,” while offering the option of a free transfer to an alternative flight or a voucher or refund, as well as hotel accommodation and meals .

Referring to the delay, which meant the flight arrived in Manchester several hours late, they added: “Although this was out of our control, we sincerely apologize for the inconvenience caused by the later delay.”

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