Air Transat: a passenger pays $5,000 after being refused a flight because of illness

An Air Transat passenger says he was "completely abandoned" by the carrier after he was unable to catch his return flight following an illness, forcing him to shell out $5,000 out of pocket, CTV News reported.

Air Transat: a passenger pays $5,000 after being refused a flight because of illness

An Air Transat passenger says he was "completely abandoned" by the carrier after he was unable to catch his return flight following an illness, forcing him to shell out $5,000 out of pocket, CTV News reported.

• Read also: Two “disruptive” travelers force an Air Transat plane to make an emergency landing

Shaun Mehta felt ill when boarding a flight to Toronto from Barcelona on July 10.

“The last passengers were still boarding when I became dizzy and nauseous. I passed out in my seat,” he told the media.

After receiving first aid from flight attendants and a passenger who was a doctor, Spanish paramedics tested his vital signs and cleared him to fly.

A flight attendant, however, reported to her soon after that the pilot was not comfortable having her on the flight.

Information about Mr. Mehta's condition had been passed on to MedAire, a company specializing in travel medical support, Air Transat said in a statement to the media.

“After analyzing the situation and discussing with the captain, MedAire decided that the passenger should indeed not travel. The paramedics arrived shortly after and took care of the patient,” said Marie-Christine Pouliot, spokesperson for Air Transat.

"Passengers who are denied boarding for medical reasons should contact their travel insurance provider to cover all accommodation or travel costs," it said.

The passenger then exited the plane with his wife and expected to receive assistance from the airline to reserve seats on another flight and help make arrangements.

"None of that happened," he said.

First escorted to a taxi when they had nowhere to go, they were then taken to a kiosk of several airlines, where they were given the telephone number for Air Transat's head office. But since it was a Sunday morning, no one answered on the other end of the line.

"We have been completely abandoned by Air Transat," said Mr. Mehta.

The man therefore contacted his travel agent and found himself reserving seats on an Air Canada flight for the next morning, since the next Air Transat flight was not scheduled for several days. With an extra hotel night, the final bill reached $5,000.

Mr. Mehta assured that he had not received any communication from Air Transat since the events.

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