Investigation launched into Sunwing mishaps

April 25th, 2018  |  Canadian Business

In recent weeks budget airline Sunwing has received 89 complaints across 23 seperate flights, prompting an investigation by the Canadian Transportation Agency.

The complaints were filed between April 14 and April 18, when Toronto was in the depths of an ice stormwhich lead to flight cancellations, delays, tarmac wait times of up to six hours and some passengers losing their baggage for an entire week. The mishaps have been blamed on short-staffing from Swissport, the company who handle Sunwing’s baggage and gate operations.

Despite releasing a statement to CBC acknowledging that it “fell short” and hopes the CTA inquiry will ensure “corrective actions can be implemented”, the airline could follow in the footsteps of Air Transat who were recently hit was a $295,000 fine for leaving passengers with long tarmac delays in July.

Sunwing passenger Mary Martino was one of the many who filed a complaint with the CTA last week after flying home from Aruba on April 15. She explained how her plane was delayed on the tarmac in Toronto for six hours, and passengers were only allowed to leave once another passenger fell ill and had to be taken away by paramedics. "I'm traumatized and haven't gotten over it," she said. "After four hours everyone was starting to get crazy. Imagine we had to call 911 to get off a Sunwing plane."

Similarly passengers Mario Stojanac and Mary Luz Mejia flew from the Dominican Republic to Pearson Airport on April 14. Twelve days after their bags went missing they were still waiting.  

“How is that a reasonable approach for paid services?" said Mejia. "It's not acceptable."

In a bid to rectify the situation, Sunwing has offered passengers a $100 travel voucher for their troubles. "We share the concerns expressed by our customers," said Sunwing spokesperson Jacqueline Grossman. "We would like to reiterate our sincere apology to all customers affected."