A DUNDALK couple have described their recent experience at Dublin Airport as a “bit of a nightmare”.
The couple who wish to remain anonymous told the Dundalk Leader that they were “shocked and stunned” when their flight was cancelled ten minutes before they were due to board the plane last weekend.
“We were standing in line waiting to board the plane when there was an announcement that the flight had been cancelled,” he said.
“We were told to go home. This was after three hours of queuing to check-in our bags and to get through security.
“We were told to go back and collect our bags from the baggage area and to go home. We were also told that if you had bought duty free to return it.”
The couple were due to fly to Salou in Spain on Sunday, May 29 at 5.45am. They had been in the airport since 1am after their son had driven them to Dublin Airport from Dundalk.
“We were 36 hours without sleep in the finish up. After the announcement, nobody moved because people were shocked and stunned,” he said.
“Around 8.30am some people started receiving text messages from TUI with further updates saying the next flight would be 36 hours later on Monday, May 30 at 6.45pm.
“We were afraid of what was going to happen. We’d no direct contact with TUI. We had booked the trip through O’Callaghan Travel in Dundalk.”
He added: “We went home in the bus and the next day we went to O’Callaghan Travel agents and they were really good to deal with.
“They helped me to arrange another antigen test with Smyth’s chemist so I could fly. Despite this, there was a lot of confusion and anxiety.
“The worst part is we had not been away abroad for three years. This was our first holiday in a long time and we lost two days of annual leave.
“Our holiday was cut short from seven days to five days. There will be compensation but we will not get those days back. We were very relieved to make the flight.”
He concluded: “It’s beautiful over here and it’s great to be on holidays. We just wish it had been the full week.”
She said: “It was a nightmare at the airport. The uncertainty of it and all of the confusion. However, O’Callaghan’s were fantastic to deal with.
“We had been looking forward to this holiday so much. We are glad we finally made it but it’s disappointing we missed out on two days.”