On a flight from Manchester airport to Australia via Abu Dhabi, an Etihad plane was turned around to allow an elderly couple to visit their dying grandson.
The couple found out about their grandson’s condition only after they had boarded the flight, with the couple’s travel agent, Becky Stephenson saying that they were switching off their mobile phones when they noticed a missed call from their son-in-law.
“They were taxiing on the runway when they got the text message saying their grandson was in intensive care and they needed to get there,” Stephenson told The Star.
The couple informed the crew, who told the captain, who turned the plane around back to the boarding gate.
The airline staff had the couple’s baggage removed from the flight, and the couple’s car was collected from the car park and taken to arrivals so they could leave straight away.
Unfortunately, their grandson passed away the following day.
“It was such a sad thing that happened to my clients, but it was lovely that Etihad was able to help in the way they did,” Stephenson said.
“I’ve been in the travel business for 25 years and have not heard of an airline going above and beyond with their customer service in such a way,” she added.