Our travel agency is getting lots of telephone calls from people stranded abroad due to the volcanic ash cloud who are desperate to get home. The last call we had was from a family stranded in Spain on the Costa del Sol who need to get home as the daughter has important GCSE’s. They are unable to get through on the phone to any airlines or ferry companies. The family wanted to know if I could get them on a flight or coach back to the UK.As no one knows when flights will be operating again it is impossible to book a flight for anyone and all we can do is offer advice and ideas on how they can get home to the UK.I have read all sorts of stories in the newspapers.
Some people have paid thousands of pounds to get a taxi. One person I read about had hired a car in France and dropped it off in the UK so he could get on a cross channel ferry. The car hire had cost about £600. People have got on container ships as they normally have a few beds available that they sell to the general public. Many people have used a combination of trains, cars and ferries but as ferries have become fully booked for foot passengers they have resorted to buying bikes as they are not counted as foot passengers.The situation has now become a national crisis and the government now needs to get involved and sort the mess out. It is really not possible to fly planes?
Why can’t planes fly at a lower level, underneath the ash cloud? The airlines would probably say that flying lower costs more fuel but surely that is a small price to pay.As things stand all airlines have been grounded until Monday and one newspaper report I read said that flights could well be cancelled most of this coming week. Lets hope that this is not the case and that the crisis is sorted out urgently but if the volcanic ash cloud continues as it has been doing then it is impossible to say when flights will get back to normal.