EasyJet cancels 60 more flights, disrupting 10,000 passengers’ travel plans

Exclusive: Airline has grounded at least 60 flights on Thursday, some at a few hours’ notice

Related: EasyJet to cancel more than 20 daily half-term flights from Gatwick in late May

Ten thousand passengers booked to fly on easyJet on Thursday to, from and within the UK have had their flights cancelled.

The Independent has identified at least 60 grounded flights today, most of them to and from London Gatwick – the airline’s main base.

Britain’s biggest budget airline is unable to crew the schedule it has planned from the Sussex airport, and is cancelling around 30 flights daily at a few days’ notice.

But many passengers have been given significantly less warning, with travellers from Bristol to Lisbon told at 5am that the only flight of the day is grounded. They were told: “This is due to a technical issue with your aircraft which could not be resolved.”

A flight between Edinburgh and Birmingham was cancelled just three hours ahead of departure. No reason was given.

Many of the cancellations on Thursday are to longer-distance destinations and places with few alternative services. From Gatwick, they include both main airports in Sicily, Catania and Palermo; Olbia in Sardinia; Bodrum in Turkey; and Marrakech in Morocco.

Based on a typical aircraft capacity of 180, and the “load factor” (proportion of seats filled) in the last comparable month of June, in 2019, The Independent calculates an average of 167 passengers will be booked on each flight – representing more than 10,000 travellers.

All grounded passengers are entitled to be flown to their destination on the same day, if any flight is available – including on alternative airlines.

If a same-day replacement is unavailable, easyJet must provide a hotel room and meals as appropriate.

In addition, compensation of £220 (or £350 for flights over 1,500km) is payable to each passenger, unless the airline can demonstrate that “extraordinary circumstances” were responsible.

A handful of flights to and from Paris Charles de Gaulle – serving Gatwick, Bristol and Luton – were grounded “due to industrial action with the Fire Services in Paris Charles De Gaulle tomorrow”.

Passengers booked on these flights are not entitled to compensation.

If all travellers entitled to claim were to seek compensation, the bill for today’s flights alone would be over £2m.

A spokesperson for the airline said: “easyJet is operating over 1,700 flights today carrying a quarter of a million customers. Unfortunately, due to the ongoing challenging operating environment including the knock on impact of yesterday’s air traffic controller strike in Italy and airport services strike action today across France, around 60 flights to and from the UK today have been cancelled, many ahead of customers arriving at the airport.

“We are very sorry and fully understand the disruption this will have caused for our customers. We are providing options to rebook or receive a refund as well as hotel accommodation and meals where required, along with information on how to arrange this quickly online or via the app.

“Our customer service hours and hotel accommodation sourcing have been extended to support impacted customers and help get them to their destination as soon as possible.”

British Airways is cancelling an average of 120 flights on weekdays – the vast majority of them with several weeks’ notice.

EasyJet cancellations from Gatwick

  • Alicante
  • Bodrum
  • Catania
  • Faro
  • Krakow
  • Limoges
  • Lisbon
  • Malta
  • Marrakesh
  • Marseille
  • Milan Malpensa
  • Montpellier
  • Munich
  • Olbia
  • Palermo
  • Paris CDG
  • Prague
  • Santiago
  • Seville
  • Verona
  • Zurich

EasyJet cancellations from Bristol

  • Belfast International
  • Inverness
  • Lisbon
  • Madrid
  • Naples
  • Paris CDG

EasyJet cancellations from Luton

  • Belfast International
  • Paris CDG

EasyJet cancellations from Edinburgh

  • Birmingham

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