‘I can’t stay here because I’ve got nothing. I’ve got to go home,’ says customer
A distraught mother of two says she fears her family will have to fly home from a long-awaited holiday, after a suitcase of essentials “vanished” en route to Mallorca.
Louise Ali says she queued for three hours the night before her family’s 6am Tui flight, in order to drop off their luggage early at Manchester Airport amid reports of luggage chaos.
The family’s flight from Manchester to the Balearic Island left on Wednesday 3 August.
However, when Ms Ali – along with husband Hassan and their sons, aged eight and two – arrived at Palma’s airport, they realised their case had gone astray.
She says they may now be forced to fly home early, since the lost suitcase contained essential medication for one of their sons as well as clothes, credit and debit cards, and a pre-paid travel money card.
“It’s been horrific from start to finish,” she told the Manchester Evening News .
“I got to the desk at Palma and there was no help. They said it could come on the next flight, tomorrow, in a few days.
“They said this is happening all the time at Manchester. ‘Don’t worry’.”
She claims that Tui has left the family in the lurch for nearly a week, with few clothes to wear, little access to cash and no steroid cream for their son’s eczema.
“TUI said to call back after six days – what do I do for six days? It took me eight hours to get hold of somebody and they said there was nothing they could do.”
“You wouldn’t mind if someone said they were looking into it for you, they will try to find it, but it’s nothing – radio silence. They couldn’t care less.
“We can’t go out now. They said to go and find some [steroid cream] from somewhere and we could claim it back but we’ve got to wait for three weeks in case they find our cases. I’ve got no clothes, no shoes, nothing.”
She describes her decision to leave the bank cards in the hold luggage as “the perfect storm” after the early rush to the airport.
“I was just rushing. I’m kicking myself for being so stupid. I can’t stay here because I’ve got nothing. I’ve got to go home.
“There are probably loads of us [in this situation]. The person we spoke to at Palma said Manchester was the worst for it, there are so many bags going missing all the time.”
A spokesperson for TUI told Manchester Evening News the company was “very sorry” to hear about the luggage issues which have affected the family.
The spokesperson added: “We are urgently investigating this with our baggage handler to find out exactly what happened and our team in resort will be in touch with the customer as soon as possible today to help resolve the issue.”
A spokesperson for Swissport, which handles Tui’s baggage at Manchester Airport, added: “We’re sorry to hear that Ms Ali’s flight was delayed and about her subsequent baggage issues.
“Airlines, airports, and aviation services all work together to deliver different elements of a single passenger journey, and in peak travel periods, the knock-on effects of delays across the travel process can lead to disruption in others.
“We apologise for the frustration this has caused, and we’re working closely with our airline partner to reunite the passenger with their luggage as soon as possible.”