LIS - missed flight ?

Old Aug 9, 22, 5:39 am
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LIS - missed flight ?

My friend and his family just missed their BA flight from LIS due to long lines at passport control. They were booked to connect at LHR (all on one ticket) to JER.

The ground staff won’t do anything and when they call BA they say they need to book a new ticket.

Is this the case or could the flat tyre rule apply?

It was an Avios rewards ticket and the agent in the call centre told them since there’s no Avios availability there’s nothing they can do. I’m not even sure they can book a new ticket with the ban on new ticket sales from LHR (for the connecting flight to JER).

they were at the airport in good time and checked luggage.

i have personal experience of the contracted GroundForce staff being very unhelpful at LIS in the past.

How would FT recommend they proceed ?

thanks in advance

Last edited by mmogdan; Aug 9, 22 at 5:53 am
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Old Aug 9, 22, 5:57 am
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I don't think there's much they can do other than booking new tickets and hoping their travel insurance will cover them.

Book the cheapest flights they can find on any carrier.
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Old Aug 9, 22, 6:15 am
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The flat tyre rule is generally used for events outside of the person's control and has to be communicated to BA before check-in. Harsh as it may seem, given the state of travel at the moment, not leaving enough time to get through passport control would not generally count as "outside of the person's control". We last used it when our cabbie took an incredibly circuitous route to the airport before breaking down on one of the bridges.
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Old Aug 9, 22, 6:17 am
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I fear this one is for insurance to cover... if it's in their policy. Were they cutting it fine or were the queues "extraordinary" I hope they took some photos etc if it was
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Old Aug 9, 22, 7:07 am
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There are e-gates for UK passport holders, but I'm guessing a child was involved. If they were the only passengers caught by this then it gets very difficult to argue with BA. GroundForce have a habit of closing the gate before the advertised 20 minutes so if they were there before then they have a stronger argument. If it happens again, best to send one adult through the e-gates to plead with the gate staff to hold on for a bit. Otherwise it is the responsibility of passengers to be at the gate in time, no getting around that.
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Old Aug 9, 22, 7:11 am
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post
There are e-gates for UK passport holders, but I'm guessing a child was involved. If they were the only passengers caught by this then it gets very difficult to argue with BA. GroundForce have a habit of closing the gate before the advertised 20 minutes so if they were there before then they have a stronger argument. If it happens again, best to send one adult through the e-gates to plead with the gate staff to hold on for a bit. Otherwise it is the responsibility of passengers to be at the gate in time, no getting around that.
yes, there’s a child. They’ve booked with Avios to get to LHR later today. BA won’t sell tickets to JER even though the BA1366 seems open.

I’ve recommended they keep the old ticket live (instead of FTV) and hope that someone at LHR can change the JER segment of the old ticket to the BA1366
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Old Aug 9, 22, 7:14 am
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You need to get someone at BA to keep the ticket alive because of the no show.
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Old Aug 9, 22, 7:15 am
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Presumably once they have boarded everyone and are missing passengers at 20 mins they have to notify the Captain and it's still up to him or her whether to accept? I assume the Captain has to instruct the baggage offloading, and it's not something automatic?

Frustrating for the OP, but agree with the other posters- sounds like an insurance job.
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Old Aug 9, 22, 7:29 am
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I don't think gate staff seek approval from the captain or crew. In case of no-show at the gate, the pax in question (and any checked bags) are unloaded and the flight is closed/ready to depart.
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Old Aug 9, 22, 9:53 am
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But if they checked bags, surely that says they were on time for the flight? Would their name have been called at security for expediting? Seems a bit harsh on OP to say, “your fault, got to insurance if you have any”?
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Old Aug 9, 22, 10:14 am
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Originally Posted by wanderingjock View Post
<snip>Seems a bit harsh on OP to say, “your fault, got to insurance if you have any”?
I don't perceive anyone as being "harsh on OP" (not to mention this didn't actually happen to the OP since they are posting on behalf of someone else) but rather some pretty experienced contributors explaining how the system works. Nobody said it's a fair system, but it is what it is...

Regards
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Old Aug 9, 22, 10:24 am
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Originally Posted by scubadu View Post
I don't perceive anyone as being "harsh on OP" (not to mention this didn't actually happen to the OP since they are posting on behalf of someone else) but rather some pretty experienced contributors explaining how the system works. Nobody said it's a fair system, but it is what it is...

Regards
I warned the family several times over the past few days (having had a few close calls in LIS myself over the past year) so my understanding is they arrived with plenty of time. They were caught out with a very long immigration line to exit Portugal and couldn’t use the eGates since they have an under 12.
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Old Aug 9, 22, 10:29 am
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Originally Posted by mmogdan View Post
I warned the family several times over the past few days (having had a few close calls in LIS myself over the past year) so my understanding is they arrived with plenty of time. They were caught out with a very long immigration line to exit Portugal and couldn’t use the eGates since they have an under 12.
Well BA won't like this, but there may be scope to take this further against BA, there have been successful cases in this space. But a lot depends on exact timings, so I would get the family to note down what they recall about this, plus whether other people were also affected. If they genuinely turned up in good time then I would hope they would get something back from this on the basis that they fulfilled their side of the contract. As ever a lot will depend on the details.
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Old Aug 9, 22, 10:37 am
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Originally Posted by mmogdan View Post
I warned the family several times over the past few days (having had a few close calls in LIS myself over the past year) so my understanding is they arrived with plenty of time. They were caught out with a very long immigration line to exit Portugal and couldn’t use the eGates since they have an under 12.
To be clear, I'm not saying your friends are at fault. Just clarifying that I don't think posters are trying to be harsh in their responses to you (or indirectly your friends).

But just so we are being intellectually honest here, you say they "arrived with plenty of time" but if they in fact missed their flight and others did not, well then technically, they did not in fact arrive with plenty of time. Anybody paying even a casual amount of attention to the news, etc. should be aware that travel in Europe can go painfully wrong no matter ones intentions.

Regards
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Old Aug 9, 22, 10:43 am
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Originally Posted by scubadu View Post
To be clear, I'm not saying your friends are at fault. Just clarifying that I don't think posters are trying to be harsh in their responses to you (or indirectly your friends).

But just so we are being intellectually honest here, you say they "arrived with plenty of time" but if they in fact missed their flight and others did not, well then technically, they did not in fact arrive with plenty of time. Anybody paying even a casual amount of attention to the news, etc. should be aware that travel in Europe can go painfully wrong no matter ones intentions.

Regards
Understood. Obviously I wasn’t there so I can’t verify the exact timings. When they get home I’ll ask for additional information.

I was surprised to learn there’s no assistance for this. So I’ll certainly continue allowing extra time in places such as LIS.

I should add, that the father of the group was visiting me in LIS and missed his flight back in February 2022. I would hope that this experience combined with my continued warnings this past weekend would have resulted in them leaving additional buffer time!

Last edited by mmogdan; Aug 9, 22 at 10:48 am
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