Bride vows to by no means fly with TUI after nightmare 34-hour delay to dream wedding ceremony

Gwenllian Lewis-Ashton, 27, and Jonathan Ashton, 37, mentioned they heard a “big bang” as lightning struck their aircraft on take-off and claimed the pilot flew for greater than an hour earlier than turning again to Bristol airport

Gwenllian Lewis-Ashton says her household was delayed 34 hours to get to her wedding ceremony in Greece (

Image: MEDIA WALES)

A bride has vowed to by no means fly with TUI once more following a 34-hour delay from Bristol to her wedding ceremony in Greece.

Gwenllian Lewis-Ashton, 27, and Jonathan Ashton, 37, mentioned they heard a “big bang” as lightning struck their aircraft on take-off and claimed the pilot flew for greater than an hour earlier than turning again to Bristol airport.

The couple and their wedding ceremony occasion mentioned they skilled greater than 30 hours of “appalling” communication and delays.

Nurse Gwenllian and retail supervisor Jonathan’s wedding ceremony was postponed from 2021 to June 5 this yr due to Covid-19, WalesOnline reports.

The couple had organized to journey with 14 members of the family and buddies to Santorini by means of a TUI bundle costing greater than £3,000.

Have you been affected by journey issues lately? Email webnews@mirror.co.uk

Gwenllian Lewis-Ashton along with her gran Joan Morris
(

Image:

MEDIA WALES)

Gwenllian mentioned latest experiences of big queues at Bristol Airport led them to reach early for his or her 6am flight on May 31.

She mentioned: “We stayed up all night and left our home at midnight to ensure we got to Bristol on time.

“Despite being early we nonetheless queued just a few hours to check-in however managed to skip by means of safety after buying fast-track.

“With a late call to the gate, all 16 of our wedding party, including my 85-year-old grandmother and two-year-old niece, managed to get on the plane.

Passengers queueing to check-in at Bristol Airport final week
(

Image:

SWNS)

“An announcement was made to say the plane had missed its slot and had a 12-minute delay to wait for the next.

“At this level, we had been simply completely happy to be on that aircraft hassle-free.”

Once on the plane, the nightmare continued with the flight disrupted by severe weather.

The bride added: “During take-off, the aircraft was struck by lightning, the place all passengers heard an enormous bang and a few claimed to have seen the lightning.

“Jonathan thought the engine had blown off. It happened just as we took off and the plane was in the air.

“The captain spoke to us and confirmed we had been struck by lightning however reassured us that the plane was constructed to resist issues like that.

“We continued to fly for over an hour. We were over Luxembourg when the captain made another announcement, declaring he had to return the aircraft to Bristol for engineers to inspect following the earlier incident. It was definitely a big frustration that we’d carried on for so long.”

On their return, the marriage occasion went by means of passport management, claimed their baggage and acquired £10 vouchers from TUI for meals on the airport.

Gwenllian mentioned they waited two hours for a bus to the Bristol Hotel the place the journey company put them up for the night time.

She added: “The lack of communication only made the situation more stressful due to the unknown of when or if the flight would be rescheduled at all.

“We rang the TUI help line a number of instances they usually did not know what was taking place.

“It wasn’t until 2.40am the following day that we received an email stating the flight was rescheduled for 1pm.”

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Gwenllian added the unique plane had flown to Tenerife the identical day so her group was bewildered as to why it couldn’t have gone that afternoon.

She mentioned: “Our rescheduled flight was delayed an hour. While waiting to take off we were informed that there was no hot food available.

“We had been delayed a complete of 34 hours, leading to two days misplaced of our vacation, but additionally our wedding ceremony planning, the place we had been required to fulfill distributors and consider the venues for the big day. It needed to be a bit rushed.

“We were all exhausted. My grandmother Joan is still recovering. But we were very relieved to get there and the wedding day was lovely.

“Ahead of the return flight, we had been delayed two hours in a scorching and small airport, to learn that there was minimal snacks and drinks obtainable and no duty-free store.

The newlyweds claimed compensation from TUI however had been rejected
(

Image:

NurPhoto by way of Getty Images)

“Once we arrived back in Bristol we were of course greeted with a two-hour wait for baggage. This was the last thing we all needed at the end of a cut-short holiday.”

The newlyweds claimed compensation from TUI however had been rejected.

Jonathan mentioned: “They said something about natural disasters when we asked why.”

Gwenllian added: “We will never fly with TUI again after their poor communication and dreadful customer service and urge all future customers to think again about who they chose to fly with.

“We had been going to go for a little bit honeymoon this weekend however all of the flights had been TUI so we thought, ‘Don’t hassle.'”

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A TUI spokeswoman mentioned: “We’re incredibly sorry to the wedding party on flight TOM6212 from Bristol to Santorini who experienced some disruption to their flight due to a lightning strike.

“The safety of our passengers and crew was not compromised and always remains our highest priority. The aircraft was not damaged in any way and was completely safe to land.

“We aim to communicate with customers as quickly as we can if there are any changes to their holiday and offer transport, overnight accommodation, meals and refreshments as needed.

“We understand that last-minute delays and cancellations are incredibly disappointing, and we would like to reassure them that did everything we can to get them to enjoy the celebrations as planned.

“We’d like to apologise again for the inconvenience caused and we thank customers for their understanding.”

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