Abandoned by Caribbean Airlines
I was hoping to send this to you sooner...
Main reason for this story: Passengers on flight BW 011 from Jamaica to JFK were treated like animals. Took me almost a full whole day to return home.
My boyfriend and I left Jamaica on Tuesday 8/12/14 at 6:50 PM and I arrived in New York City at 1:30 PM on Wednesday 8/13/14! Kenny missed an extremely important business meeting that afternoon, and our last memory of vacation is sitting in a “holding area” for 10 Hours.
On Tuesday night around 11:30 PM, flight bw: 11 circled the runway of JFK airport consistently due to poor weather conditions. The pilot made a judgment call to make an emergency landing in Philadelphia because of a shortage in fuel. He said this was for our safety, and we are completely grateful for him making that decision. It is always best to put safety first. The problems of this event came after we arrived in PA.
We arrived in Philadelphia at approximately 12:00 AM and landed the plane. The Caribbean Airlines staff said “We will refuel the plane so we can continue our trip to New York.” After hearing these words, the passengers waited until 3:30 AM for the next message. Children, elderly, and the ill, waited for three and a half hours (sitting in the airplane seats the entire time) before hearing anything from the staff! The pilot only came onto the loud speaker because passengers were becoming restless and begging and screaming for an explanation for why we have not boarded. After three and a half hours, the pilot claimed “we will not be flying to New York tonight, but will be taking ground transportation”. We sat on that plane for 7 HRS from a trip that should have only taken less than 4 hrs.
We soon exited the plane and walked into a “holding area”. This was a hallway with such limited seating, that 1/10th of the flight had to lay down on the escalator and floor for the next two hours (no food or drinks mind you we have pictures). We were then told a bus would be arriving after5 AM and we would be on our way through customs. We wait behind doors for an hour that were guarded by police. Well it turns out,; at 6 AM, we still had not been through customs AND Caribbean Airlines forgot to provide US Citizens with the necessary paperwork to get through that process (another major hold up). The only food we had was water and a few cookies.
By the time I finished with customs, it was just past 6:30 AM (supposed to be 5 AM) and we went to the bus terminal at the airport. At this point in time, the Pilot and Caribbean Airlines staff had LEFT the airport after telling us they would accompany us! It turns out, they left the airport without informing anyone about the bus procedure or us. Not a SINGLE person at the airport knew anything about us passengers let alone about a bus coming to pick us up, and it wasn’t until I personally watched a supervisor call Coach USA and order a bus did it come (at 8:40 AM)! I want you to understand, babies and elderly waited from a landing at 12 AM approximately 9 Hours for a bus, that the airline didn’t even call!!! Boarding the bus became another process since people were pushing each other to get their luggage on board and finally get a comfortable seat to sit in.
From our personal perspective, Cristina and I missed a full work day, lost out on sales and had to take another vacation day! Rather than refueling the plane and getting us to our destination (which we paid good money for) we took a bus and later arrived in New York at 1 PM ET. We then had to travel back into Manhattan from JFK which took another Hour.
Caribbean staff kept valuable information from it’s passengers, abandoned it’s passengers, and missed it arrival time by nearly 13 Hours! It ruined a beautiful vacation for many passengers, and I know that I will never forget how I was mistreated that night.