by: Natalie Dreier, Cox Media Group National Content Desk
CHARLOTTETOWN, Prince Edward Island – Air Canada is the latest airline coming under fire for bumping a passenger on an overbooked flight.
But this time, according to the Vancouver Sun, the passenger in question was 10 years old and the only member of his family barred from the trip.
Brett Doyle had purchased tickets for him and his three family members months ago for a trip from Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, to Costa Rica.
But when he tried to check in and select seats the day before their vacation this month, he was unable to select a set for his 10-year-old son. They spent hours on the phone with Air Canada to correct the issues, then drove to the airport, only to be told the flight was overbooked.
Doyle said he was told by an Air Canada agent that 34 tickets were sold for the 28-seat flight, but that it was unlikely that six passengers would miss a flight over spring break, according to The Vancouver Sun.
They then drove to Moncton to get another flight to make their connection to Costa Rica in Montreal, CBC reported.
That flight was canceled. They then drove to Halifax, staying overnight in a hotel, to be able to get to their final destination.
An airline spokesperson said that companies use a computer algorithm to look at patterns where customers book flights and don’t show up. Isabelle Arthur told The Vancouver Sun that even though Air Canada sells fewer seats than the prediction, there are still times that flights are overbooked and passengers must be moved to a different flight.
Arthur said that children under the age of 12 are usually seated with family, but there was a miscommunication in this case because the airline wasn’t directly dealing with the Doyle family.
Doyle said that Air Canada offered him a $2,500 voucher and may pay for the expenses incurred. The voucher expires in a year.