Massive queues stretch into car park of Manchester Airport Terminal 3
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In recent weeks and months, UK airports have seen a sudden influx of post-pandemic travel and are struggling to cope with the pressures. This has caused mayhem all over the country, worsened by the surge of families attempting to get away for half term.
More than 30,000 people face disruption to their half-term travel plans over the coming week, with airlines cancelling a large number of flights.
EasyJet has revealed that they will be cancelling more than 200 flights over the half term period.
Around 24 flights a day will be cancelled between May 28 and June 6, which is when the school holidays fall.
Some passengers who have already been affected by cancellations spoke to the BBC about their experiences.
Rob Gore spent a whopping 14 hours at Manchester Airport on Friday, June 27.
He planned to travel to Turkey with his family for his sister-in-law’s wedding, but after facing delays the flight was inevitably cancelled.
But the worst part is that Rob and his family were actually on board the plane when they received this news, before being ushered off the aircraft.
He said: “It was just an absolute farce from Tui, no reps available until right at the very end.”
The situation, caused by the pilots running out of hours they could work, left his children in tears, he said.
The family holiday was a big trip for Rob, since it would have been the first since he began treatment for cancer.
He was also devastated for his kids, who hadn’t had a holiday for three years and were “heartbroken”.
Rob and his family hope to fly out today to attend the wedding on Monday, May 29.
They will have stayed in a hotel in Manchester for two nights.
Travel company Tui said it has apologised to those impacted by the cancellation, offering compensation in the form of overnight accommodation, meals and refreshments while they planned a new flight.
Fred Toon and his family were also left disappointed following a flight cancellation.
He was due to fly from Gatwick to Menorca, Spain on Saturday, May 28, with his wife, three children and his wife’s parents.
Their flight was cancelled just half an hour before the family were set to board the plane, leaving his children devastated.
It would have cost the family £4,000 to rebook the flights, and while he knew he could claim this back from the airline, he did not have the £4,000 in his account to purchase them.
Plus, the only flight on offer was on Thursday, and his accommodation was booked from Saturday to the following Saturday.
He described the situation to the BBC as “quite heated”.
Jo, a Tui flyer from Manchester Airport, also described the scenes she experienced at Manchester as “like the start of the pandemic”, with travellers “panic buying” drinks as they faced delays.
She explained that families were left without nappies or water because the airport shops did not have the capacity for all the holidaymakers.
EasyJet and Tui have both apologised for the disruption the cancelled flights have caused, citing issues such as air traffic restrictions and runway works.
Tui told Express.co.uk: “The half-term holidays are always an incredibly busy period with many customers looking to get away.
“We would like to apologise to all those customers that have been impacted by the small number of flights that have been delayed or cancelled. Unfortunately this was due to various operational and supply chain issues..
“We’d like to reassure customers that we are doing everything we can to minimise delays and will be in direct communication should their holiday be impacted and would like to thank customers for their patience and understanding during this time.”
Express.co.uk has also contacted Manchester Airport for comment.
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