Linda Trestrail, 69, and Wendy Russell, 71, have blasted Jet2 for what they called a “catalogue of disasters” as they were put on the wrong plane to the Spanish island of Menorca instead of Majorca
Linda Trestrail, 69, and Wendy Russell, 71, had their tickets checked five times but still ended up on the wrong plane. The mistake was only realised when the captain announced they were landing in Menorca.
Jet2 has apologised for the “human error” and blamed it partly on the special assistance provider at Bristol Airport. But the women are angry about the “catalogue of disasters” and claim they have not received any compensation. Linda said: “You hear of bags going on the wrong flights but not people.
“The reason we booked Majorca is because of the short flight, we knew our mobility wasn’t good so didn’t want to do much travelling – we are disabled pensioners.” She added: “You get compensated if you get delayed or lose luggage – but they lost us, not the bloody baggage. Jet2 holidays, the package holidays you can trust – yeah right.”
The duo were given wheelchair assistance at Bristol Airport and helped onto the shuttle bus and plane. Linda said they showed their tickets to the luggage desk, security, a gate desk person, and a ground crew member on the bus – who even did a head count.
She added: “Jet2 are the only ones who do double security check on tickets – so they did that, and then we were directed to our seats on the flight. A cabin crew member asked if we were in the right seats, I said yes but she took our tickets away and confirmed we were in the correct seats.
“Then the captain says we’re landing in Menorca in 10 minutes! Chaos ensued. I cried to Wendy, ‘Oh my god, Wendy! He said Menorca not Majorca! I told the flight attendant we were on the wrong plane – and she burst out laughing. Our tickets were checked five times – even by the flight attendant twice on the plane. Two passengers had flown from Bristol Airport to Menorca – and Jet2 didn’t even know who was on their plane.”
It turns out, three seats on that flight were empty, and Wendy and Linda were sat in two of them – and they sat in the numbered seats that they were given on their original flight to Palma De Majorca. The horrified pair were told to stay on the plane, as the captain introduced himself and admitted he had never heard or experienced such an error in his whole career.
Despite offering to fly the ladies back to Majorca himself, Linda says the CEO of JET2, Steve Heapy, “was going mental” and they were unable to be flown back to Majorca or even remain on this plane “due to security reasons”. Wendy, who has had three brain operations and arthritis, said: “We went through five major checks there and no one picked up the error – it begs the question about what is going on. They are banging on about security, security, security – but we could’ve been anybody.”
Adding insult to injury, when they asked about their luggage, they found out their bags had reached Mallorca without them. Wendy pointed out that this was a serious security breach: “I had my injection in my suitcase – our families were so worried. Our luggage was on the right plane as it took off with two bags without the passengers – that’s so concerning. They are allegedly so concerned about the seriousness of it, but whichever way you look at it it’s a major breach of security. Two suitcases that could have had anything in them.”
The ladies waited in Menorca airport, with the “kind assistance” of a Jet2 manager there – and they had to wait several hours until travelling on an internal plane with other workers. Upon their arrival in the correct destination – Palma De Majorca – the pair were arranged a private car to their resort.
Linda said: “We were supposed to be at the resort for 1pm – but neither of us knew what time it was by now. The transport coach we had booked had gone hours and hours ago – and from minute we left home it was around 17 hours later our feet and legs were like balloons
“Then the Jet2 rep at the resort wouldn’t even meet us there, she called me and said she had left – and apparently didn’t have time to see to two disabled pensioners – I was furious.” The journey that should have only taken them five hours from leaving their houses at 3am on 26 September – took them over 17.
Linda and Wendy say they collapsed in their room upon arrival. But the disappointment only continued for the unfortunate duo – who at this point were in “such an awful state”. Linda says she received a call from a different Jet2 rep two days later, offering the disabled ladies a ‘free excursion’ – when they cannot even walk.
She explained: “He told us that because of our ordeal, they were going to give us a free excursion – I said ‘Are you joking – a what? Do you realise we can’t even walk let alone go for an excursion? We’ve been in a state. He replied it was a gesture of good will for what we’ve been through, I honestly thought he was joking and said I’m putting in formal complaint before we leave – we couldn’t go anywhere with our legs and feet swollen and we were in such a bad state. He told us to go to the CEO, Steven Heapy, when we got home and said we would be compensated.”
Wendy and Linda were apparently ‘famous’ on the island that week, everybody knew around the island. Linda explained: “We went on the beach one day and a man came up to us and said, ‘You two aren’t the ladies who were put on the wrong flight?’ Everyone knew us. We tried to make the best of the situation – but honestly, it was disgraceful.”
The pair, who admitted to feeling “terrified” on the plane journey back to England on October 6, said their holiday was “ruined” and claimed they have been waiting ever since for contact from Jet2. Despite their travel agent from Hays Travel contacting the airline, as well as their children, they say they have only received an apology from Bristol Airport – but nothing else.
The pair are still looking for compensation for their “spoilt” holiday. Wendy added: “You put your faith in these people and when you think of the checks, with tickets passed backwards and forwards plus they were checked again on the plane. There were two Jet2 planes at fault and Bristol Airport. Luckily it was trauma for us – but for someone else, it could have been a lot worse – a lot worse, and this should never happen again.”
Jet2 have now apologised for the incident. A spokesperson said: “We would like to offer our sincere apologies to Mses. Trestrail and Russell for this incident. This is an extremely isolated incident and although there was no security risk, we have of course investigated it as a matter of urgency, including with the third-party special assistance provider. We can confirm that the customers went through security correctly, and their luggage was also screened correctly.
“However, after these checks the customers were taken to the incorrect aircraft, which is the responsibility of the third-party special assistance provider at the airport. Upon boarding the aircraft, the incorrect destination on their boarding passes was unfortunately not identified and we apologise for this oversight which was down to human error.
“We have carried out additional training with the team to ensure this does not happen again. As soon as we learned of the issue, our team booked Mses. Trestrail and Russell onto the soonest available flight from Menorca to Majorca and they also provided all the assistance they could both throughout their journey and the rest of their holiday.
“We have been in touch with Mses. Trestrail and Russell to offer an appropriate gesture of goodwill and once again offer our sincere apologies. We understand they are due to travel with us once again this year, and we look forward to welcoming them onboard and delivering the usual VIP customer experience that we are recognised for.”
A spokesperson for Bristol Airport said: “Thank you for bringing this matter to our attention, we will continue to work with the airline and the special assistance provider to further investigate the circumstances and introduce improvements for the future.”
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