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United Loses Passport, Family Loses Dream Vacation


When a United Airlines ticket agent lost track of a passport, a family trip that included four generations of travelers failed to take off.

The Raine family saved for six years to afford a vacation that would take them from their home in England to sunny beaches and amusement parks of Florida. It took United Airlines only a few minutes to put an end to those plans.

The family of six told The Northern Echo that their dream vacation started to go awry shortly after arriving at Manchester Airport (MAN) on October 20, when the passport of Ashley Raine, 28, was handed over to a United agent during check-in and subsequently went missing.

“We knew we had handed over all the passports and the first bag was checked in,” said Ashley’s father, Alan Raine, 54. “Then she told us one of the passports was missing. Even the security guard said he had seen them all.”

When it became clear to the traveling family — consisting of a mother, father, grandparents, grandson and great-grandchild — that the passport would not be located and there wasn’t enough time to obtain a new one, they were forced to abandon their long-awaited getaway.

“It was completely embarrassing for us. I’m gobsmacked, I can’t believe it,” Alan told the Echo. “I was really looking forward to going to Florida, but instead I am back at home.”

The missing passport was located the following day on a MAN baggage carousel. Alan claims United has yet to apologize for the incident. “[United has] told us they are investigating but we haven’t heard anything. They just don’t seem interested.”

A United representative told the Echo, “We are sorry to hear about the disruption to the Raine’s family travel plans following the loss of a passport at MAN,” adding that they would be reaching out to the family to offer “a gesture of goodwill.”

[Photo: Sarah Caldecott, The Northern Echo]

Comments are Closed.
BJM November 3, 2014

is it just me or does the kid look like the cat that swallowed the canary? Maybe check his pockets for the passport.

overdahill November 3, 2014

I am a believer of the punishment fitting the crime, here ua needs, if facts are in order, ought to reconstruct their vacation. that does not mean a free vacation but a comparable replacement with a few goodies thrown in. extra expenses should be reimbursed, flown over 8 mill miles, stayed in over 4000 nites in hotels, never been stranded overnite and refused to fly a smelly plane on AA on May25tj. Some travel is not replaceable being time or event sensitive. those are tough to balance. contact Disney, they often help with conditions a pic of the agent worth a lot here...take pics people...

kirkwoodj November 2, 2014

Surely there are many facts missing from this tale. Smacks of a typical cherry-picked, sensationalized tabloid-type story.

DFW2TUL November 2, 2014

I haven't flown United since the summer of hell and based on this and other articles, it does not sound like UA has improved. Mistakes happen but it is how the situation is handled that sets good companies apart from bad companies. Even if UA uses contract agents at this location, it does not matter. The agents are UA in the eyes of the passenger. Di I think UA owes the family an entire free vacation? Of course not, but UA does need to come through with some type of apology and goodwill gesture.

McSam18 November 1, 2014

Danielonn, take it easy killer. Jeez.