Brits have described scenes of “absolute carnage” and “biblical queues” at UK airports as last-minute cancellations and huge delays make mid-term holidays hell
Passengers have described queuing in “biblical queues” outside UK airports in the early hours as the semi-annual holiday chaos continues.
Holidaymakers at Leeds Bradford Airport shared scenes on social media showing lines snaking with huge crowds forced to stand in the cold and dark at 4am on the anniversary Friday.
In Manchester, returning passengers claimed their children were forced to sleep on the floor after their flight was canceled and video shows passengers climbing through the carousel curtains to retrieve their luggage.
At Bristol Airport, travelers have described “absolute carnage” in the departure lounge with “people filling every available inch” of space.
The half-year week has been littered with horror stories from hopeful Brits who have faced last-minute holiday and flight cancellations from major operators including TUI, Ryanair, Jet2, easyJet and now British Airways.
Are you affected by the mid-term holiday chaos with canceled/delayed flights? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Retired Police Chief Superintendent Owen West was among the queues at Leeds Bradford Airport on Friday morning.
Mr West, who is traveling to Spain, posted pictures outside and inside the airport as crowds were forced to stand outside at 4am.
He wrote on Twitter: “Biblical queues. Once outside, out of the rain, it goes straight around the inside of the building to get to the security queue.”
Speaking to LeedsLive, he added: “The queue is so big now that a lad has just delivered a couple of pints from the bar to his buddies in the security queue.”
On Wednesday, father-of-two Ernest Murray, 50, told The Mirror how his flight to spend three nights in Paris with his family had been canceled as they sat in the departures lounge at Manchester Airport.
The data scientist, from Leeds, West Yorkshire, said: “It wasn’t until we got through security that we even found out the flight had been cancelled.
“They say they can refund the flight there but not the return flight and they say they can fly us from London to Paris but we would have to catch the flight back to Manchester.
“We can stay with friends in London but if we drive down and leave the car in London we have no way of getting home when we end up back in Manchester.
“The problem is there is no advance warning or even text telling you it has been cancelled. You have to go through security before you find out.
“I might have expected a delay after reading the news about the chaos at UK airports, but not this.”
On Wednesday, The Mirror spoke to another group who had traveled to Manchester Airport for the second time in less than a week after their TUI package holiday to Kos, Greece, was snatched from beneath them as they stood to board the plane .
Lucy Hollister, 24, was one of 11 friends and family who booked the getaway to lift their spirits following the death of her stepfather.
But after a 7-hour delay on Saturday, as the real estate agent waited to board the plane, she explained how police had sent passengers home, claiming there was “no pilot” to fly the plane.
Lucy, from Sale, Manchester, said: “We were at the airport a total of over 11 hours.
“We ended up standing at the gate waiting to board and a police officer just got up and announced that the flight was canceled and there was no pilot available to fly the plane.
“No one from TUI said anything to us, we didn’t even get an apology and when we called the customer hotline they couldn’t get through.
“The whole time the departure board just said ‘Relax’ next to our flight, which only made it more frustrating.
“After wasting the day at the airport, we had to turn around and go through the arrivals hall, but there were only two people checking through 230 passengers.
“They asked us if we ‘had a nice holiday’ and their systems didn’t work because the computer classified us as leaving the UK but never arriving in Greece, so we were just in this digital no man’s land. “
The group had returned to instead try to get away from Barcelona for five days together, but still encountered long lines at security, where only two baggage lanes were open.
Airport officials at Leeds Bradford have asked passengers not to arrive more than three hours before their flight, as many admitted they arrived well in advance to beat crowds and delays.
Speaking to the Mirror at Manchester Airport, Damian Morgan, 53, from Stockport, Manchester said: “I think the reason it’s quite busy is because most people have arrived a few hours before their flight to avoid the rush to escape.
“We haven’t flown in years, it’s our first family holiday since Covid so we’re hoping for a smooth sailing.”
Others told how they turned up three and a half hours before their flight after being startled by scenes on social media.
In a pinned tweet, LBA said: If to travel from @LBIAport Please arrive at least three hours before your departure time this week.
“You can help expedite your passage through security by familiarizing yourself with the process. Thanks for your support.”
https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/passengers-face-biblical-queues-absolute-27137279 Passengers face “biblical queues” and “absolute carnage” at airports on Anniversary Friday