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Jet2 customers’ fury as covid test rules force them to desert Lanzarote holiday | Travel News | Travel


Alan and Pearl Osborne were eager to fly to Lanzarote (Image: Teesside Live)

A pair are furious as they continue to be £1,000 out of pocket one yr on from having to cancel their holiday on account of Covid rules.

Pearl and Alan Osborne booked a visit to Lanzarote within the hope to enjoy their first holiday in three years but, on the night before their flight, they found Covid rules had been modified when re-entering the country.

The principles meant those entering the country needed to take a Day 2 PCR test and self-isolate until they receive a negative test, which was not feasible for Alan, 76, who had a crucial medical appointment booked two days after he landed.

Alan is assessed as extremely vulnerable, having had chemotherapy for a rare incurable type of non-Hodgkins lymphoma called Waldenstrom macroglobulinemia.

The good-grandparents, who’re from Stockton-on-Tees, County Durham, say they were left with no alternative but to desert their holiday and now, a couple of yr on, they proceed to battle to get compensation for his or her £1,040 trip, plus costs for the unused tests.

Jet2 says the tourists “didn’t contact” the business until after his outbound flight had departed, Teesside Live reports.

Passengers arriving from a UK flight walk through the arrivals area of a foreign airport

Passengers arriving from a UK flight walk through the arrivals area of a foreign airport (Image: Getty Images)

Speaking today, Alan said: “We hadn’t had a vacation for about three years so we got to about November last yr and we hadn’t really planned anything and we just thought we’ve got to go for it since it was the primary time we had been within the clear.

“On Sunday, November 21, we sat down and said ‘let’s do it!’ Let’s go as soon as we are able to. On the time you needed to do a lateral flow test whenever you returned inside two days and that was it, no other restrictions.

“We booked the vacation with Jet2 and took out the travel insurance and ordered the tests they usually were like £20 each. My wife is on insulin and I’m on tablets for irregular heart and other things and I had lymphoma. Actually packing is a superb art for us because we’ve got to take the correct tablets, her injections. From Sunday to Saturday, we were virtually every single day doing a little bit of packing.”

By the afternoon of Saturday, November 27, the couple were ready and raring for his or her flights with bags packed. Their son popped over to go to and asked whether the couple had heard concerning the recent Covid rules, which had just been announced by then Prime Minister Boris Johnson that day to tackle the Omicron wave.

The regulation change meant all international arrivals were made to take a Day 2 PCR test and self-isolate until they receive a negative test. Other rules included the re-introduction of face masks in shops and on public transport.

Jet2 Airbus A330.

The couple had hoped to travel with Jet2 (Image: Getty)

Alan said he booked the vacation deliberately before his medical appointment just in case anything got here from it. He said: “We couldn’t go on holiday unless I missed that appointment. At 8pm, on a Saturday night at the tip of November, there isn’t a way I can rearrange any appointments obviously.

“We actually sat here and talked about it for an hour and decided that we couldn’t go because I might should miss the appointment. We didn’t even consider going to the appointment illegally – which was an option. I could’ve come back from holiday and gone to the appointment on Tuesday morning and said nothing after I must have been in self-isolation.”

Alan claims he tried to phone Jet2 on the Saturday night at 10pm but said there was “no facility in Jet2 for cancelling a vacation after 6pm on a Saturday” and that the vacation went through as a no-show.

A Jet2 spokesperson said: “We’ve got looked into this matter from November 2021 and may confirm that Mr Osborne didn’t contact us until after his outbound flight had departed, nonetheless, the booking was subject to our usual terms and conditions.

“We did offer Mr Osborne insurance with Covid cover included, nonetheless, this selection was not taken. We at all times advise customers to make sure they’ve appropriate travel insurance in place.”

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After making the decision to desert the vacation, the battle for compensation began, which has raged for over a yr. Alan is content that Jet2 and Travel Time have acted inside their contractual entitlement but believes the federal government ought to be stepping in relating to compensation.

Alan said: “The very first thing I did was phone Jet2 when the office was open. They said that of their terms and conditions we weren’t entitled to any refund since it was a no-show. I then put a claim in for travel insurance. They got here back and turned it down on the premise that there isn’t a provision within the policy for cancellation on account of covid conditions.

“I then wrote an email to my local MP Matt Vickers on the premise that I actually have had this loss on account of covid and the airline has no responsibility, the insurance has no responsibility, are you able to compensate me?”

The duo then contacted the federal government in March 2022, hoping to say through a fund for losses on account of Covid. They eventually received an email from the Chancellor of the Exchequer saying compensation had to come back from the travel agent.

After one other round of contacting each Jet2 after which being told to return to the travel insurance, they were told once more by each that they may not claim any a reimbursement. They then went to the Financial Ombudsman, which sided with the travel Insurance company, as there was no provision for cancellation on account of changes in Covid regulations.

Alan has since sent emails to multiple members of the Conservative Party in addition to Mr Vickers again, but has not heard anything back. He said: “We cannot accept that the lack of over £1,000 is ‘tough’ or ‘the luck of the draw’, especially in the present cost of living crisis.”

The Civil Aviation Authority, which oversees all points of civil aviation within the UK, said that as the vacation wasn’t cancelled, the passenger wouldn’t be entitled to a full refund on this instance. TravelTime Travel Insurance and the policy’s insurer, Chaucer, declined to comment.

A spokesperson for the Financial Ombudsman Service said: “The Financial Ombudsman Service looks at each grievance by itself individual merits. When investigating complaints, we are going to reach a good and reasonable decision based on all of the circumstances of the case.

“We do that by taking into consideration relevant law and regulations, regulators’ rules, guidance and standards, codes of practice and, where appropriate, what the ombudsman considers to have been good industry practice on the relevant time.”

Matt Vickers didn’t want to comment.

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