7 Jun 2017

Mother of Two Split from Family on Overbooked Vueling Flight

Vueling plane in flight

A family holiday was ruined after Vueling refused boarding to a mother of two due to overbooking. Iona Delgado, 42, was due to fly to Alicante on a long-awaited family holiday, booked six months prior to travelling, only to be told at the gate that the plane was overbooked and she could not fly with her two young children and husband.

Mrs Delgado commented, ‘I was in absolute floods of tears. The kids were really upset. There were a few other people who were in the same position. There was a lady there by herself who really didn’t know what was going on.’ She added: ‘Even the pilot was stood there and he looked really sorry.’

Mrs Delgado was then offered a flight via Amsterdam and later arrived at her destination 24 hours later, separate to her family. To add to the blow, Mrs Delgado was given her daughter’s suitcase in error and in a comment on Facebook she stated ‘The wrong suitcase was marked, leaving me with jelly shoes size 1, lots of kids’ summer clothes and a fidget spinner.’

Overbooking is basically a way airlines can make more money by selling seats that don’t exist, on the assumption that not everyone will turn up for the flight. But when more people than expected turn up, airlines have to find a way to convince people not to fly. Often they incentivise people to agree not to fly by, for example, offering upgrades on later flights. But if nobody agrees to leave the flight voluntarily, then airlines have to forcibly deny some people the right to travel, causing distressing situations such as this one.

In our opinion, this is just another example of airlines putting profits before passengers, and it has to stop.

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