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Woman’s booking mistake flew her to wrong continent

October 31, 2013 Aviation, Headline News 2 Comments Email Email

egtmedia59A British woman who booked a trip to the Spanish city of Granada discovered on the plane that her flight was in fact heading for the Caribbean island of Grenada on the other side of the Atlantic.

Reaching Granada is a two-hour flight from London but reaching Grenada takes about 10 hours.

Lamenda Kingdon

Lamenda Kingdon

The woman, Lamenda Kingdon, thought she had booked a yearned-for flight to Spain as a ‘bucket list’ treat, having been diagnosed with breast cancer and a brain tumour, Britain’s Metro newspaper reported.

Two hours into the British Airways flight from London Gatwick, she mentioned to a fellow passenger how much she was looking forward to seeing Spain. The other passenger, shocked, told Kingdon the truth and went further, grabbing the elbow of a passing BA flight attendant and calling out loudly: “This lady thinks she’s going to Spain”.

According to Metro, Kingdon had booked the flight over the phone using her late husband’s frequent flyer points and using Avios, a British reward program where members collect points by taking flights or shopping, which are then redeemed for flights or holidays. Kingdon didn’t spot the one-letter spelling difference between  Grenada and Granada. As a result, she was heading for a destination almost 7000 kilometres from where she had planned to visit.

Kingdon said she noticed before takeoff that the departure and arrival times were vastly different – but presumed that was “something to do with the time difference”.

The sympathetic BA flight crew ushered Kingdon into first class, where she sipped Champagne until a scheduled stop in St Lucia in the Lesser Antilles. There she spent six hours at the airport before boarding a flight home.

The story has a happy ending. BA staff at Gatwick arranged a hotel for Kingdon and helped Avios reimburse the points she had used – plus quite a few bonus points, Metro reported. As a result, Kingdon now has enough points for her next dream trip – Christmas in Omarama in New Zealand’s South Island.

It is not known why Kingdon has chosen Omarama. It is important not to confuse it with Oklahoma.

Written by : Peter Needham

Currently there are "2 comments" on this Article:

  1. John says:

    What a great story! Boarding the wrong flight is a nightmare of mine, but I’m pleased to see that this one had such a happy ending.

    It does amuse me, however, that no one from BA noticed the difference either…

  2. EMB says:

    John shouldn’t the woman have seen the mistake on her E ticket…

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