5:33 PM July 31, 2022
6:06 PM July 31, 2022
Holidaymakers heading off to Majorca from Norwich Airport were forced to wait more than 40 hours before taking off because of technical problems with their aircraft.
The flight, with travel company TUI, was due to leave the city at 7.40pm on Friday night, but did not depart until 1.45pm on Sunday.
The wait was the latest in a series of delays which have held up TUI travelers flying from Norwich in recent days.
Many of those traveling on TUI’s AP5480 Norwich to Palma flight did not learn of the latest problems until they reached the airport on Friday afternoon, and were forced to return home or go to stay in nearby hotels.
Passenger Alex Molina, 37, said there had been “complete chaos” and a “real lack of communication” about when he and other passengers would be able to fly.
He added: “I ended up hanging up with TUI’s customer service after three and a half hours on the phone to them just because we couldn’t get through.”
Mr Molina, who lives in the city, first found out his flight would be delayed at about 5pm on Friday – 30 minutes before he and his family were due to head for the airport.
He later had an email to confirm the flight would still be going but at a later 10.20pm departure time.
“We were assured it would be leaving that night so we jumped in a taxi and went through the usual process of check-ins and security,” he said.
“The flight then got pushed back another two hours to 12.20am before the announcer confirmed the flight would not be leaving after all that night.”
Despite the disruption, Mr Molina praised Norwich Airport and its staff for the way they’ve handled things.
“We can’t thank the staff enough – they’ve been fantastic,” he added.
A TUI UK spokesman said: “We fully understand customers’ frustration due to the delay of flight AP5480 from Norwich to Palma scheduled to depart on July 29 which was unfortunately delayed due to a technical issue.
“We do everything we can to get customers away as planned and we know how disappointing delays are, particularly on the rare occasion that they are lengthy. We will keep all customers updated with regular communication, while we work through a new flight plan.
“We’d like to apologise to all customers for the inconvenience and thank them for their patience and understanding at this time.”
It comes after a number of TUI flights in and out of Norwich have been delayed in recent days due to staff shortages and other operational issues.
This included a TUI flight from Menorca being delayed by more than three-and-a-half-hours while a departure to Rhodes was also affected.