Passengers on an EasyJet flight to Portugal were left stranded ‘for five hours’ after their plane left without them.
They diverted to Porto because the runway at Lisbon Airport was closed, with passengers allegedly told they would be able to get back on after the plane had refuelled. Instead, after five hours they were told to get on replacement buses, eventually arriving eight hours late on April 12.
Passenger Frazer Rendell, 48 told Surrey Live: ‘We got to the airport just after two o’clock and were sat there until 4.30pm until someone said your plane has taken off and has gone to Lisbon without you.
‘Everyone was shocked that the plane had gone without us in the same condition that it arrived in. At 5.50pm, passengers boarded the coach and went to Lisbon.’
The forgotten passengers from @easyJet flight EZY 8717 that have been stuck at Porto for 3 hours when we should be in Lisbon. Better than the plane with broken AC and toilet? #verybudgetairline pic.twitter.com/mGbjnRZIKW
— Frazer Rendell (@frazerrendell) April 12, 2019
An EasyJet spokesman said: ‘EasyJet can confirm that flight EJU8717 from London Gatwick to Lisbon on 12 April diverted to Porto due to the runway closure at Lisbon. ‘Once in Porto the flight was subject to a slot constraint and so the decision was taken to disembark passengers for their comfort. ‘The slot delay unfortunately caused crew to exceed their legal working hours limit so passengers were provided with refreshment vouchers and offered coach transfers to Lisbon. ‘After customers had disembarked a slot became available and so the flight operated an empty sector to Lisbon to ensure it could operate later sectors. ‘Although this is outside of easyJet’s control, we would like to apologise to passengers for the inconvenience caused and thank them for their patience.’