A couple, hoping to spend their holiday in Turkey, had their trip cut short after they were wrongly refused on board a plane from Stansted.
The pair were supposed to be spending 10 days in Bodrum, Turkey and booked their flight with budget airline easyJet.
Although the couple had obtained the e-Visas that are required when travelling to Turkey, easyJet staff refused to let them board the plane without a printed copy.
However, this is against the advice that holidaymakers are given by the Turkish authorities and Foreign Office.
Without this paper version of the Visa, the couple were unable to board their flight even though they arrived at the airport in good time.
According to the Independent, the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs clearly states an electronic copy is more than adequate.
They advise customers to “keep your e-Visa with you either as a soft copy (tablet PC, smartphone, etc.) or as a hard copy” when boarding the plane.
Similar advice is offered by the Foreign Office who say: “Print off and carry a paper copy of your e-Visa, or make sure you have an electronic copy on a smartphone or other device to show to the immigration officer.”
One of the passengers informed the Independent that the experience has left them traumatised and that their Easter plans were ruined.
According to the report, the airline has admitted that they were wrongly denied boarding.
An easyJet spokesperson said to the Express.co.uk: “easyJet can confirm that two passengers booked on flight EZY3149 from London Stansted to Bodrum were unable to travel as a result of an issue with their travel documentation.
“Like many airlines, easyJet uses an automated travel document verification system called Traveldoc to validate passengers’ travel documents.
“It is widely used and recognised by many airlines, as an official industry provider of aviation security and immigration data which is collected from various sources including government agencies.
“Our ground staff at Stansted acted in line with the guidance provided by Traveldoc, which stipulates that passengers must have printed copies of their Turkish e-visas. We are sorry that the guidance provided by Traveldoc appears to be more stringent than the requirements of the Turkish authorities and will be contacting Traveldoc to alert them to this issue.
“We would like to apologise to the passengers for the inconvenience caused and our customer services team is reaching out to them to discuss alternate travel arrangements and compensation. The safety and security of its passengers and crew is easyJet’s highest priority.”
As per passenger rights, the couple will receive £350 (€400) in compensation.
The couple has since been able to re-book their holiday and are due to fly to Turkey today.
One of the passengers said: “In shock and total disbelief we challenged the representative. She said quite bluntly that if we wanted to get on the flight we would have to find a printer.”
“The whole situation was humiliating and upsetting.
“We were unceremoniously sent back to Departures, although we had to do that ourselves which was a mission in itself; easyJet gave us no assistance.
We eventually got there with the help of a security person.”