Published On: Mon, Nov 5th, 2018

British couple takes TUI Airlines to court and wins back nearly 13,000 USD after honeymoon flight hell

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Everything went perfectly until we got to the airport for our flight back home.

We were called to our gate for boarding where we waited for several hours before being told that our flight was cancelled due to poor weather, so passengers were sent to nearby airports. 

The one TUI representative I managed to briefly speak to told me that we would need to meet at 5am the next morning for a five-hour coach trip to another airport, where the flight still wouldn’t be guaranteed.

As there were no car seats we had no safe way of travelling with out two year-old daughter, so we made our own return flight arrangements. 

We felt completely abandonned by TUI, even when we called their helpline. 

The earliest flights we could get were four days later and cost 2,165 USD and this was to sit in economy when we had previously paid to fly premium.

We also had to pay an extra 1,925 USD to stay the extra nights in our hotel.

Our delayed return meant that I missed the funeral of a friend, my eldest daughter missed exams and both my husband and I missed work.

I’m appalled at the way we’ve been treated. 

Can you get TUI to properly compensate us for ruining our honeymoon?

Jayne Neil, Gerrards Cross

Leah Milner replies: When you first contacted me I went back and forth with TUI to try and get your money back.

A spokeswoman for TUI apologised and explained the delay was caused by the diversion of the aircraft on its way to Cancun as a precautionary measure due to bad weather.

TUI said it was in direct contact with you to reimburse the hotel stay, return flight and offer a gesture of goodwill.
But you felt that TUI hadn’t gone far enough to put things right after ruining your honeymoon.

 Jayne,41,  with daughter Piper, 2, on the beach in Mexico before their 'familymoon' turned sour

Jayne,41,  with daughter Piper, 2, on the beach in Mexico before their ‘familymoon’ turned sour (Photo: The Sun)

While the company was covering your costs, you didn’t feel the compensation was adequate, given that you’d had to miss a funeral, work and your daughter had missed her exam.

On top of this you’d paid extra to fly premium for this special trip and then had to fly back economy.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get TUI to go any further, so you decided to take matters into your own hands.

You chose to use the courts to try and win back more money.

You could have taken your complaint through ABTA instead, the trade body for travel agents, but you felt you had a strong case and wanted to go straight through the courts.

And as you had already made a successful claim against a kitchen company in the past, you weren’t too nervous about going down this route.

 Nicole, 11, missed important exams at school because of the family's flight cancellation

Nicole, 11, missed important exams at school because of the family’s flight cancellation (Photo: The Sun)

You had to pay a fee of 534 USD in order to submit your case online through the HM Courts & Tribunals Service’s Money Claim Online process.

If you’d lost your case you wouldn’t have got this money back and you might have had to pay some of TUI’s costs, but you were willing to take a gamble.

Well, your gamble paid off and two months after submitting your form online a county court judge found against TUI and ordered the company to pay you 13,000 USD – almost the full cost of your holiday.

It also had to cover court fees.




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