One EasyJet passenger is irate after a 6-hour flight from Egypt to London quickly turned into a 16-hour nightmare, during which her diabetes supplies were removed from her person and her insulin pens were ruined.
Adele Napier and her husband and children were on a flight from Hurghada Airport in Egypt to London Stansted when the flight was unexpectedly rerouted to Italy for a change of crew. It was there, as the passengers were being held in a waiting room for their flight to depart, that things took a turn for the worse. Staff members took Adele’s hand luggage from her, claiming that it was too big for the overhead compartments and would need to be placed in the cargo hold.
Adele says she asked several times when the plane would be taking off again, and each time, staff members told her it wouldn’t be long and refused to grant her access to her diabetes supplies. When she tried to explain that she needed her insulin, she says she was told to “go away.” As the hours dragged on, Adele began to worry that her blood sugar levels were unstable because of her increased stress and lack of food. Without her supplies, she was unable to even check her blood sugar, let alone do anything to correct it.
And of course, diabetes was just one of many problems plaguing the family that day. Adele claims there was limited seating in the waiting area, and young children slept on the dirty floor. There was no food or drink available to any of the passengers for the first few hours, and people who complained of thirst were advised to drink the restroom tap water. No one was allowed to get to the personal items or luggage they’d brought with them.
Frustrated and angry over the incident, Adele took to social media to call out EasyJet on its gross mishandling of the situation. “Absolutely shocking how myself, my partner and my children were treated,” she wrote. “First a two-hour and 45 min delay at Hurghada airport where all the decent food places and shops were closed, so was unable to adequately feed my children! Then a stop off in Milan that was supposed to be half an hour to swap cabin crew turned into four hours 45 minutes, and we were locked in a holding room unable to leave to get fresh air. I was told my ten-month-old baby had to sleep on the floor and was not going to get our pram until we get to London!”
Adele went on in her message to EasyJet, describing the conditions her family was left in for several hours. “No food or drinks for the first two and a half hours and told by an EasyJet staff member if we wanted to drink water to use the tap in the bathroom!!!!! I was lied to about when we were getting on the plane to come home on more than one occasion!!! To add insult to injury, I was also told I couldn’t put my feet on the chair so my seven-year-old and baby could cuddle up to their mother. Genuinely never flying EasyJet again. We were supposed to be home at 11:55 pm [yesterday], only to arrive at 9:30 am TODAY.”
When the passengers were finally allowed to reboard the plane, Adele’s bag was placed into the cargo hold. During the flight, the contents of her 10 insulin pens froze due to the cold temperatures at that high altitude, rendering them useless, even after thawing. Adele and her family were forced to wait until they returned home to get insulin for her. They were lucky that Adele didn’t have any major health crises during that time, but things could have turned out much worse.
EasyJet has since apologized for the “inconvenience” caused by the change of flight crews and the long wait passengers experienced in the holding room at the Milan airport. However, for passengers like Adele, this was more than just an inconvenience. It could have been a life-or-death issue if her blood sugar levels had dropped or increased too drastically. It also left other people without access to basic necessities like food, drink, and clean areas to rest, which several passengers have complained to EasyJet about.
“Left here with no food, water, or updates?” passenger Janet Tindall wrote to EasyJet on Facebook. There are babies and children here. Nothing short of disgraceful!”
“Stuck in Milan. Been treated like prisoners,” wrote Dean Westlake, another passenger on the flight. “EasyJet, you are a disgrace. Given food voucher with nowhere to use it, no staff anywhere, no info, eight-hour delay. Disgusting behavior.”
What would you have done in this situation? We can’t believe any airline crew would be so insensitive and refuse passengers access to important medical supplies and other necessities, and we hope EasyJet will come forward with a better apology and a better explanation of what happened soon.
Elizabeth Nelson is a wordsmith, an alumna of Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, a four-leaf-clover finder, and a grammar connoisseur. She has lived in west Michigan since age four but loves to travel to new (and old) places. In her free time, she. . . wait, what’s free time?