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Home Vacation Family’s Cancun holiday ‘shambles’ as hundreds of TUI passengers left stranded for over 50 hours

Family’s Cancun holiday ‘shambles’ as hundreds of TUI passengers left stranded for over 50 hours

by Staff

A Lincolnshire family say their holiday was ruined along with hundreds of other passengers when they were left stranded in Mexico for more than 50 hours. Austin Bridgman, from Sleaford, and his family jetted off to Cancun earlier this month for his mum’s 50th birthday.

The family, along with around 300 other passengers, were due to fly back from Cancun to Manchester Airport with TUI on Saturday, March 9 at 4.30pm. However, they were made aware of a technical issue with the aircraft shortly after boarding. Austin, 21, says everyone was made to wait on the plane in “stupidly high temperatures” for around two hours and likened the experience to “sitting in a microwave”.

All passengers were eventually disembarked as the issue with the aircraft could not be resolved. After sitting in customs for an hour-and-a-half and waiting another hour to retrieve baggage, all passengers were told to wait outside the airport for two more hours before being shipped off to “sub-standard” hotels. Austin says that they were given no food or drink on the first day, including older people and children.

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He claims that some people’s baggage, including his own, was returned damaged and the only food available upon arrival at the hotel was stale sandwiches. Some hotels reportedly had vomit and bodily fluids in places and even people running around naked.

The next morning on March 10, all passengers were taken back to the airport early in the morning for a new departure time of 1.30pm, 21 hours later than their original flight. However, TUI informed everyone that the aircraft had still not been fixed. Austin’s family and the hundreds of other disgruntled passengers were made to wait a further 10 hours in the airport. Some reportedly began to run out of medication and essentials.

Hundreds of passengers spent hours waiting around in Cancun Airport(Image: Submitted)

Everyone eventually received food and drink vouchers of $20 which passengers say barely covered the “extortionate” airport prices, including $8 for a bottle of water. After being informed that their flight would be delayed once again, Austin and his family didn’t get back to a hotel until 10pm. The following day on March 11, passengers finally departed Cancun at 6.20pm local time on a different TUI aircraft before arriving home at 10.20am on March 12, totalling a 52-hour delay.

Austin and the other passengers said they couldn’t fault the TUI staff at the airport but were “disgusted” by the company as a whole. He said: “I couldn’t speak higher of the TUI staff on our flight. They went above and beyond. It was the wider company that did nothing to help.”

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