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Jetstar cancellation leaves 100 Hamilton Island travelers stranded just after Whitsundays holiday getaway

Far more than 100 passengers, like younger family members, were still left with no in which to snooze soon after staying ferried off Hamilton Island next a flight cancellation on Monday evening.

Denva Suttie’s family’s Whitsundays vacation ended in something but a comfortable trend.

“It’s been very really hard for us,” the Melbourne resident stated.

Just after keeping on Hamilton Island for five evenings, Mr Suttie, his wife Sarah and five-calendar year-previous daughter Kyra ended up ushered off their Jetstar flight JQ849 after it was cancelled due to an engineering issue.

A spokesperson from Jetstar stated that bad temperature intended the airline was not able to operate a substitute flight the exact night.

Passengers have been place on a ferry to Airlie Beach because there was no accommodation readily available on Hamilton Island.

Left in the lurch

In spite of staying explained to that accommodation for passengers “would be sorted out at Airlie Seashore,” Mr Suttie said that was not what occurred the moment they arrived at the Port of Airlie terminal following dark.

“Every person was standing all-around dumbfounded mainly because there was no-one particular there to give us a hand to notify us what to do with any variety of route,” he claimed.

A man beckons three people to cross a road.
The Port of Airlie is the major hub for ferries accessing the islands in the Whitsundays.(ABC Tropical North: Tegan Philpott)

Just after expending more than a few hours trapped in the ferry terminal Mr Suttie reported he had no plan where by his family would rest.

“It was a case of, ‘What are we likely to do now, slumber at the terminal listed here?'” he explained.

“Mainly because there was no lodging — there was no accommodation whatsoever, not even with the backpackers or everywhere.”

A tropical town beneath a deep blue sky.
Stranded passengers were being remaining with no any where to keep in Airlie Seashore, which was at capability due to the fact of the university holiday seasons.(ABC Tropical North: Angel Parsons)

Residences to go to

In a heartwarming display of generosity, a lot of locals opened their residences for the night right after listening to the travellers had been stranded.

Mr Suttie reported he and his wife and daughter ended up among the a handful taken in by a spouse and children living in Airlie Seashore.

“We had to place some mattresses on the flooring and an additional loved ones had to snooze on a couch,” he stated.

“The community’s generosity was awesome.”

Lots of have been set up in private residences, while the remaining passengers finished up sleeping at the PCYC.

Bus organization Whitsunday Transit answered the get in touch with to be certain the flight-load of helpless vacation-makers were taken there properly.

Functions supervisor Edward Deakes reported the community’s spirit helped to replace a large amount of anger with relief.

“I was at the PCYC and these cars just turning up offering their properties to folks and people with families, providing beds and supplying rooms and blankets and almost everything else — [it] was incredible,” Mr Deakes claimed.

“We depend on tourism, so we do our most effective to aid everyone out as best we can in these seeking scenarios.”

A man wearing a bright cap and a light-coloured polo shirt sands smiling in front of what appears to be a marina.
Kev Collins helped to feed those people at PCYC Whitsunday.(ABC News)

Taste Whitsundays main executive Kev Collins, who helped supply food stuff for all those at the PCYC, stated it was an wonderful resolution looking at that the passengers had been left to fend for themselves.

“They mainly just place 150 folks on a boat and despatched them to the mainland and great luck with that,” he stated.

“If someone dropped the ball, I consider Airlie Seashore picked it up.

A Qantas plane and a Jetstar plane at an airport.
Mr Suttie claimed the working experience was inconvenient and deeply disappointing.(ABC News: Giulio Saggin)

‘Sincerely’ sorry

Mr Suttie said he experienced been left to really feel like just a number by the airline and Hamilton Island airport.

“Absolutely everyone experienced to make their personal way — there was no one from Jetstar to enable us,” he stated.

Jetstar has apologised for the disruption and thanked the neighborhood for its guidance.

“We are performing to get prospects on their way as quickly as possible and will present reimbursement in direction of any accommodation, meals and transportation expenditures incurred as a end result of the disruption,” a spokesperson stated.

“We are also comprehensively seeking into what has took place to make positive it does not manifest once more in long run and are achieving out to consumers individually to sincerely apologise for this problem.”

Hamilton Island administration claimed it was “dismayed” at information that passengers were being still left devoid of option vacation preparations or accommodation at the Port of Airlie.

“We will carry on to perform with Jetstar to minimise inconvenience to our visitors arising from flight disruptions,” a spokesperson stated.

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