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Canadian travellers stranded in other countries for days after Sunwing cancels flights

Hundreds of Canadians flying with Sunwing are complaining about being stranded at airports after the airline cancelled a bunch of flights.

"Due to severe winter weather across Canada, which has limited our ability to move planes and crew to other airports, a number of Sunwing flights continue to experience delays," the carrier said on Twitter on Christmas eve. "Our teams are working hard to re-accommodate customers locally and in destination."

Several parts of the country were blasted by snowstorms over the weekend, leading to flight disruptions. On Friday, WestJet and Sunwing both announced they were cancelling all outbound flights in Vancouver.

But people travelling with Sunwing are not as upset with the weather-based reasoning as they are with the airline's lack of communication about cancellations.

"Stop blaming the weather, it's poor management by @SunwingVacay." wrote Sunwing traveller Hamid Batenipur on Twitter, adding that his flight back home had been delayed since Wednesday.

In a subsequent tweet, Batenipour said that he had to pay out of pocket to get on an Air Transat flight.

Those travelling via flight WG516, which was headed to Toronto from Cancun on Wednesday, say they were moved to a resort as they waited on updates following the flight’s cancellation.

"We have no communication from Sunwing," one flyer said. "We do not know when our flight is and how we will get to airport."

Across its social media-based customer service channels, Sunwing has been responding to travellers asking for assistance.

Flyers say the lack of email updates or any private notifications have left them "beyond frustrated." Some have complained that updates on Sunwing's website don't match those provided by local representatives.

Many have missed out on spending Christmas with their family due to Sunwing's confusing communication issues.

Though flights returning from Cancun seem to make up the bulk of complaints on social media, those flying from Punta Cana, Montego Bay, and other destinations are also experiencing the same problems.

"We sincerely regret the impact to our customers' travel plans over the busy holiday period," said a representative for Sunwing in an emailed statement.

"Our teams locally and in destination are doing everything possible to return customers home in the coming days. We deeply apologize for delays during the holiday season, and thank our customers for their understanding while we work to overcome operational challenges brought on by severe winter weather across key regions in Canada."

Lead photo by

Clement Lo

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