If you’re worried about missing the boat remember the Titanic!
Mr and Mrs Bensusan booked a 14 night cruise with Airtours. It was back to back 7 night cruises onboard the Sundream from Jamaica, the first through the Panama Canal and the second to destinations in Mexico.
The couple checked in on time for their flight from Gatwick to Montego Bay for a 9.35 departure which would get them to Jamaica at 15.00 local time. But things did not go according to plan:
- Their plane arrived 45 minutes late at Gatwick
- Essential maintenance and safety checks were undertaken resulting in another delay of 2 hours and 50 minutes
- A further delay of 2 hours and 50 minutes was caused by damage to the runway caused by an incoming aircraft
- When the plane finally took off it encountered unusually strong headwinds which lead to increased fuel consumption. This resulted in a diversion to Sanford in Florida to take on board extra fuel.
- This extra delay meant that the crew had to be changed which caused a further 45 minute delay.
Eventually the couple arrived at Montego Bay at 4.15 am the following day, by which time their ship had sailed – despite constant assurances to the contrary.
The unhappy couple were offered the alternative of returning home with a full refund and compensation or 7 nights in an all inclusive four star resort plus £100 compensation. They chose the latter and caught the second cruise in their itinerary. On their return home they sued Airtours.
It was held on appeal that Airtours had not established that the events that caused the delay were unforeseeable or could not have been forestalled and the Bensusans were entitled to compensation.
For information on your package travel rights click here for our FAQs
[This is the case of Bensusan v Airtours Holidays Ltd heard on appeal at Brentford County Court on 8 August 2001]
The information on this website is brought to you free of charge. However some links on the site are affiliate links, including the links to Amazon. This means that we may receive a commission if you purchase something via that link. This funding helps pay for the upkeep, design and content of the site. Without it the site would not exist. If you have found the site useful or interesting please consider using the links to make your purchases; it will be much appreciated. For every commission we receive 10% will be donated to charity.