Is This The Worst Flight Ever? Passengers Forced To Pay $36k To Finish The Journey
We’re sadly used to paying extra for our flights now – baggage, drinks, extra legroom seats, priority boarding… But one thing we never expected to have to shell out for is the actually taking off.
So it’s gobsmacking to hear of Comtel Air, an Austrian-based airline that, in October, launched a twice-weekly service from Birmingham (UK) to Amritsar (India). On Tuesday, a plane which should have taken off on Saturday, stopped in Vienna for a scheduled refueling; only, according to passengers, the pilot refused to take off until they clubbed together to pay £23,000 ($36,000) to get the plane in the air again.
After a six hour standoff (let’s not forget they were already three days late in their arrival), the passengers agreed to pay £130 each to get the ordeal over. If they didn’t have cash on them, they were escorted to ATMs in the airport before being let back onboard.
The news was all over the UK media on Wednesday, and at the time, Comtel said that this “shouldn’t have happened.”
But yesterday, Comtel cancelled all its flights after Skyjet, a UK travel agent that apparently owed the airline money, filed for bankruptcy.
Stranded passengers are being offered flights at special rates by BMI, which the UK Civil Aviation Authority has agreed to refund. As for the £23,000 it cost to get the plane from Vienna to Birmingham? Cross your fingers it appears again. We wouldn’t hold our breath.
[Photo: Daily Mail]