With tens of thousands of travelers still stranded after a weekend of flight disruptions, easyJet has announced it will continue to cancel dozens of flights – most of them to and from its main London Gatwick base.
A spokesman said The Independent: “Given the continued challenging operating environment airlines and airports are seeing, we expect daily impact with early cancellations similar to levels seen in recent days – likely around 30.
“We will continue to monitor the situation closely and take advance action where possible.”
Passengers are expected to be notified three days before their flight if a preventative cancellation has been selected. The airline tells passengers: “For the latest updates on your flight, please monitor the flight tracker within three days of your flight.”
The Independent has already identified easyJet cancellations for Tuesday, including the 6:20am flight from Gatwick to Valencia and the last departure of the day from Gatwick to Malaga
Britain’s biggest low-cost airline grounded at least 30 flights to Gatwick on Monday.
While some of the cancellations were notified several days in advance, passengers to and from destinations such as Malta, Seville and Valencia were told by text message just a few hours in advance that their flight would not go ahead.
Demand for outbound flights falls after the peak holiday season, but thousands of travelers are looking for ways home from airports across Europe – from the Canary Islands to the shores of Turkey.
The easyJet flight from Ljubljana to Gatwick, scheduled for late Sunday evening, was canceled with 90 minutes’ notice. A passenger, Azra Grover, wrote on Twitter: “Had to book the last rental car before the airport closed – drive to Vienna now, what a shame, easyJet! People said to find out for themselves. You have a duty of care – hundreds are stranded without help or guidance!”
The airline’s spokesman said: “easyJet operates over 1700 flights today, carrying nearly 300,000 customers. Unfortunately, due to the ongoing difficult operating environment, around 37 flights were canceled today before customers arrive at the airport.
“We are very sorry and fully understand the disruption this will have caused to our customers. Customers will be given the option to rebook or receive a refund, as well as hotel accommodation and meals if required, along with information on how to quickly arrange this online or via the app.
“Our customer service hours and hotel accommodation procurement have been expanded to support impacted customers and get them to their destinations as quickly as possible.”
According to European air passenger rights, any airline that cancels a flight is obliged to provide an alternative flight – if necessary also with a competing airline – and, if necessary, hotel accommodation as quickly as possible. If the cause is within the airline’s control, they must also pay cash compensation of £220 or £350 on longer flights.
While easyJet has by far had the most cancellations to and from Gatwick, Wizz Air has suspended some flights from Sussex Airport, including to Malaga, Larnaca and Catania.
Amid the mounting chaos at Britain’s airports, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps found time to tweet his support for the Prime Minister, who faces a confidence vote by Conservative MPs.
Mr Shapps wrote: “With the cost of living rising, war in Europe and an economy in need of a post-Covid recovery, now is not the time for a distracting and divisive leadership contest.
“@BorisJohnson has my support – we must support him to continue his work for the British people.”
Canceled easyJet flights to/from Gatwick on Monday:
- Milan Bergamo
- Milan Malpensa