It was reported by Metro that a mother is seeking compensation after her sick son was taken off a flight without telling her.
Nicola Purdy, 48, returned to Cardiff last week from a TUI holiday in Crete, booked following the death of her husband. She went with her children Jack, 24, Alex, 12, and Darci, 11. But when they arrived at Heraklion Airport Jack, who is autistic, was taken away by a doctor when he fell ill with a migraine and started vomiting.
Once up in the air Mrs Purdy said they noticed his assigned seat was unoccupied but assumed he was sitting in priority seating nearer the front. It was only when they went to collect their luggage that she realised Jack’s bags were missing and she could not find him. They searched for over three hours along with airport security, police and the British Consulate.
Then they discovered that Jack had not been on the plane at all and as stuck in Crete without his passport, mobile phone or money. She said:
“The doctor came and took him and his boarding pass and said they would put him on the flight in priority seating. I noticed he was not in his allocated seat, but we were right at the back. I thought he was sat further down the front, there was no reason he would not be on that flight. I was perfectly oblivious and we arrived at Cardiff and went to get the luggage. We waited a while, and there was nobody left in arrivals or departures and I thought, where is my son?’
She added: ‘He must have been thinking we had all abandoned him. It was awful.’ Jack eventually returned to the UK accompanied by a TUI manager and was tearful when he arrived home in a taxi from the airport.
Mrs Purdy added: “I believe TUI should compensate us and ensure it does not happen to anybody else.”
A TUI UK spokesman said: “We are sorry to hear that Mrs Purdy’s son was taken ill in the airport lounge before his flight. Once we were made aware that he had returned from hospital and was still at the airport we fully supported them by arranging both a flight back to the UK and onward travel home, covering the entire cost. We were in direct contact with Mrs Purdy to keep her updated with the situation and have tried to make further contact following their return to the UK.”