Thursday, May 30, 2019

600 passengers left in lurch in London as Air India cancels 2 flights to Mumbai

Nearly 600 passengers travelling between London and Mumbai were stranded at a hotel next to Heathrow Airport after two Air India flights did not take off two days in a row.
A total of 293 passengers from the 13.15 Air India Flight on May 28 spent the night at the hotel while hundreds more booked on the same time flight on May 29, too, were sent to the hotel. Passengers complained there was no information from Air India staff.

Albashi Baig, 24, a student in London, was flying home to be in hospital in Thane for his 60-year-old father’s cardio-surgery, taking place on Wednesday night. But his Tuesday flight was grounded and the same flight on May 29 did not take off too.

He told TOI how had had begged Air India to get him on another flight but they did not. “None in Air India picked up the phone and we went to the airport and they told me to buy a new ticket costing up to £1,800 (Rs 1.5 lakh) one way. I am so upset.” Baig said another passenger was desperate to get to his sister on a ventilator, one’s father had died and he could not get to the cremation and one had missed a connecting flight to Australia where his wife had had an accident.

“It was chaos trying to get luggage on to the hotel bus,” said Heather Gupta, 49, a British group HR director living in Mumbai, who has missed a work meeting. Gupta had flown to London to collect her two sons, Jake, 8 and Noah, 6. She had spent Rs 6 lakh on tickets for the trip, since Rs 2.5 lakh had gone on cancelled Jet Airways tickets.
30/05/19 Naomi Canton/Times of India
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