Judge orders TUI to compensate Norfolk couple after flight delay fiasco
- Credit: Archant
A Norfolk couple have received £700 in compensation after a flight delay left them stranded in Tenerife Airport eight hours.
Anne and Derek Plackett, from West Runton, near Cromer, were left stranded with no information after their TUI flight to Norwich Airport was delayed.
The couple were left feeling cheated after being told by TUI representatives they could claim compensation, but were refused when they got home.
Mrs Plackett said: "We got to the airport early and were told by a TUI rep that our pilot 'had the vomits'. They said we were to check-in and wait on the other side so we presumed they would sort a replacement fairly quickly.
"Living in Norfolk, it's nice to get away to warmer weather in the winter months and flights from our local airport go to Tenerife. The holiday had been very pleasant and enjoyable up until arriving at the airport.
"On the other side of check-in we weren't kept informed and there were groups of very irate passengers trying to get information from the airline staff.
"The information board continued to say 'delayed' but there was no indication of how long we would be waiting."
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After writing to the airline three times and being ignored, the couple were forced to turn to solicitors.
Bott and Co took the case all the way to court on behalf of the couple and in April, a judge at Luton County Court ordered TUI to pay the pair £352 each in compensation.
A TUI UK spokesperson said: "We acknowledge the court's judgment and would like to apologise to Mr and Mrs Plackett for their experience."
Mrs Plackett said: "We really felt that TUI should have contingency plans in place, an airline of their size should have a local supply crew on standby so that the inconvenience could be managed for passengers.
"When we eventually got on the plane, the flight attendant told us that we will get significant compensation for the delay.
"Taking that advice, we wrote to TUI and presumed it would be a straight-forward process to get what we were entitled to."
The couple's claim was initially rejected by TUI citing extraordinary circumstances, despite there being a ruling in place allowing for passengers to claim for delays and cancellations caused by crew sickness.
Mrs Plackett said: "I was adamant on getting compensation as the disruption could have been avoided. I wrote to TUI a further two times and sent emails to the CEO but I didn't have the courtesy of a response.
"I was grateful to have Bott and Co there to help me. Getting compensation made up for the awful experience we had to endure and we used the money on a family holiday with our daughter."