A flight full of Wizz Air passengers have been left distraught and cashless, after the low-cost airline left them stranded 200 miles from their destination and said they had been told to find their own way.
The passengers were all on board a 9:25 p.m. flight from Tel Aviv, Israel, due to land at London Gatwick. Unfortunately the flight was delayed and only managed to take off after midnight but as a result the airline missed its landing slot at Gatwick as travelers were told they would be diverted to Luton mid -path of flight.
But in another unexpected twist there were also no slots available at Luton for the plane to land and the plane was forced to divert to Doncaster, more than 200 miles from its original destination .
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Upon arrival, passengers were greeted with no connection in progress or alternative transport arranged with “no Wizz Air staff to see” and nothing “but a bottle of water” to tide them over.
One of the passengers, Asya, who was traveling with her toddler, expressed her frustration in an interview with the Mirror: “It was horrible. I’ve never had such an experience. I don’t understand how an airline can leave people in the middle of the night and not provide them with anything other than a bottle of water.
“We landed around 3.15am in Doncaster but were supposed to land at 1am in Gatwick. They initially told us we were going to be diverted to Luton as there were no seats at Gatwick – but Luton was full and there were no ground handling staff available so they said we would go to Doncaster but arranged coaches to take us to Gatwick.”
But Asya, who only asked to be referred to by her first name, revealed that when they landed and collected their luggage it became clear no transport had been provided. She said they were advised to take taxis or trains and then claim compensation from the airline – a process that would require passengers to shell out the money first.
Asya, who was traveling with her one-year-old at the time, said there was no way she could catch a train so late at night alone with her child, so she was forced to shell out £450 for a taxi trip. to take him to his home in south-east London.
As a result, she is also worried about how easily she can claim the money.
“They [Wizz Air] didn’t provide us with anything, they weren’t prepared.”
A Wizz Air spokesperson told Asya about Twitter : “Hi Asya! Please keep your invoices and attach them to the claim you must submit via the following link.
“Our colleagues will investigate and advise you accordingly. We apologize for any inconvenience caused. And still hope to count you among our passengers.”
Asya wasn’t the only person to express her frustration to The Mirror, with one passenger, Sharchaf Karvat, even going so far as to call the whole experience “chaotic”.
Mr Karvat, who lives in Epsom, Surrey, said: “As soon as we landed in Doncaster they closed the doors and pretty much disappeared. We never saw the crew again, there was no one there. from Wizz Air.
“Airport security tried to help us and they managed to get us water and biscuits. All the shops were closed and there was only one taxi waiting.
“No one expected 200 passengers in the middle of the night to land in Doncaster.
“There were families with babies and young children and people with connecting flights who mixed up their connection.”
Shachaf managed to share a taxi home with another passenger, but it still left him with a hefty £260 bill.
After expressing his frustration on Twitter, a Wizz Air spokesperson told Shachaf: “Hi, please contact us via our live chat or call center. After having a little chat with our virtual assistant, a agent will join the conversation, please ask for your patience in the meantime.
Another passenger also tweeted: “@wizzair literally dropped a full plane from Tel Aviv to Doncaster Sheffield instead of Gatwick and told us to find our own way back. It’s cold and there are no lousy taxis leave. Incredibly shameful.”
The airline replied: “We would like to apologize for any inconvenience caused. Our airline’s primary interest is to provide our passengers with the smoothest possible service and safety.
“Please submit a complaint form via the following link and explain the problem. We will investigate.”