Seven-day delay with LIAT

Dear Editor,

LIAT airline flight 501 was scheduled to depart from Santo Domingo Airport on Sunday afternoon but was cancelled, leaving hundreds of passengers stranded there. The Antigua airport had been shut down until storm warnings for Irene had been lifted.

My flight to Georgetown ended up in jeopardy since I was supposed to fly home on Sunday, prior to stops at Antigua and Barbados. Because of the cancellation of Flight 501, I am still here in the Dominican Republic, and I am highly dissatisfied that the agent at the counter on Sunday told me that the next available flight out of DR will next Sunday, August 28. This is outrageous. They did not even act as if they were concerned about the fact that I had to spend another week in a foreign country or if I had to go back to a job (which in fact I do).  I have heard about delays for a day or two, but not 7 days. All this time wasted here is costing me a great deal, and I am highly annoyed at the way LIAT handled this entire incident. The Antigua airport reopened on Sunday evening and I would presume flights would have resumed. Some passengers stranded on Sunday were booked onto a flight this Wednesday, so why was my flight booked for Sunday? Is this the ‘Guyanese’ treatment by LIAT?  I had to spend extra money to stay at a hotel. I begged and begged LIAT on Sunday to find some alternative arrangements to get me back to Georgetown, even during the week, and they refused to do so. I shall never fly with this airline ever again.  The eye-pass is too much when it comes to Guyanese travelling within their own Caribbean region. I am not blaming them for the cancellation because I know a hurricane is a natural disaster, but they should understand people’s plight when customers tell them that they want to get back home as soon as possible. Yes, we can give or take a day or two, but not 7 whole days.

Now more than ever there is need for a wider expansion of the airline market in this region. There is need for Jetblue and Copa to come into the scenario and give LIAT and Caribbean Airlines a run for their money. They feel we cannot do any better so they treat us however they want.

Yours faithfully,
Leon Suseran
Santo Domingo

Editor’s note
We are sending a copy of this letter to Ms Sonya John, LIAT’s Director of Customer Services for any comment she might wish to make.

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