COVID-19: Sunwing cancels flights, travelers left without holiday packages

Like 1000’s of Canadians whose journey plans have been interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic, Adrienne Martin of Whitby was left with an airline journey voucher she needed to make use of.

A visit to St. Lucia this December appeared like the right getaway. She booked the journey along with her accomplice in Might.

“This time we determined to improve the resort; after being locked in the home for thus lengthy we determined to deal with ourselves,” she stated.

Martin and her accomplice had a Sunwing voucher value $4,130 from a earlier journey package deal. They utilized the credit score to a winter vacation value $4,650. The pair have been scheduled to depart Toronto on Dec. 11 and return on Dec. 18.

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The pair booked an all-inclusive trip in a luxurious junior suite with ocean view on the Royalton Saint Lucia Resort and Spa.

However on Oct. 20, Martin received dangerous information from Sunwing. The airline knowledgeable her the flight was cancelled and the Christmas vacation journey couldn’t go forward.

“We have been disillusioned and confused,” she stated.

Martin was given two choices: “change package deal on the present system fee, topic to availability” or “cancel for a full refund issued to the unique type of cost.”

At this level, Martin grew to become pissed off as a result of she stated she was not supplied her a reimbursement — simply one other journey voucher from Sunwing and no alternate journey.

“When a passenger paid good cash, money basically for his or her companies, they need to get again money if these companies usually are not offered,” stated Gabor Lukacs, founding father of Air Passenger Rights, a bunch that advocates for air passengers.

Not solely was a money refund of her buy not supplied on the time she stated the corporate was nonetheless advertising and marketing Sunwing vacation holidays to St. Lucia in December at a lot larger costs utilizing American Airways.

“That’s appropriate,” a Sunwing agent instructed Martin by phone when she inquired to seek out out if the corporate was nonetheless promoting the vacation spot. She recorded the phone name and shared the audio with World Information.

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“I can do the reserving over the cellphone,” the Sunwing agent instructed Martin.

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World Information made 5 makes an attempt over a one-week interval to acquire remark from Sunwing about Martin’s case and the St. Lucia cancellations however Sunwing didn’t return emails.

Sunwing’s choice to cancel vacation flights is affecting Canadians touring to different locations, too.

“We felt terrible, it’s one thing we’ve regarded ahead to all 12 months,” stated Karie Tepper, who contacted World Information.

Tepper, her husband and two youngsters are amongst a bunch of 20 members of the family and buddies who have been set to journey with Sunwing to Antigua for 2 weeks over the Christmas vacation break.

The group booked their journey plans in February and had paid for the winter vacation in full.

“It’s undoubtedly not one thing we had anticipated,” Tepper stated in an interview referring to the cancellation.

She stated Sunwing was ready to use the worth of the journey to the resort portion of the holiday, however the group was instructed they must pay am further “$1,200 to $2,000 per individual” to purchase substitute air journey on one other provider.

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Tepper stated it’s not possible to buy a visit at comparable costs to what was paid after they booked.

World Information contacted Sunwing about Tepper’s case however the journey firm didn’t reply to emails.

Martin, who stated she was initially instructed she must settle for vouchers, took her grievance to Twitter and World Information.

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Consequently, Sunwing modified its stance.

“I received a response from them…and it was a complete about-face. We are actually going to get our refund. They acknowledged that the unique type of cost is my Visa card and I’ll be getting my refund in 4 to 6 weeks,” Martin stated.

However she stated it shouldn’t have been so tough.

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“It’s irritating to know that that is what the common on a regular basis client has to undergo to be handled with dignity and respect.”

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© 2021 World Information, a division of Corus Leisure Inc.

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