My 11-year-old son was left in tears after Ryanair wrongly said his passport was invalid
An 11-year-old boy was in tears when Ryanair refused to let him board a flight to Tenerife.
The low-cost airline claimed the youngster’s passport had expired, although it still had four months of validity.
According to the new rules since Brexit, a passport must have at least three months of validity and be less than 10 years old.
Ryley McGuckin’s passport was issued in March 2017 and has an expiry date of September 2022.
This would mean Ryley can use his passport to travel to EU countries until June 31, 2022.
Despite this, Ryanair staff at Glasgow Prestwick Airport told the family that Ryley would not be allowed to board the flight to Tenerife.
The 11-year-old cried and apologized to his seven-year-old brother Barry.
Mum Natasha told The Record how they arrived at the airport two hours before departure at 6am but were told by staff that a phone call had to be made to the Ryanair immigration team after inspecting Ryley’s passport.
Natasha said: “After we hung up on the phone, they said we couldn’t fly because her passport wasn’t valid and it was against the law.
“We were absolutely devastated. Both my sons were crying…Ryley was devastated because he thought it was his fault we couldn’t go on vacation and he was apologizing to his little brother.”
The family was finally able to enjoy their first family vacation since the Covid-19 pandemic.
They shelled out £600 for new flights from Edinburgh Airport to Tenerife with airline Jet2, which accepted Ryley’s passport.
A Ryanair spokesperson confirmed the family had been offered a full refund for the flights.
They said: “In light of this manifest error on our part, we have written to the family and refunded the full cost of £313.79 of their unused flights and, as a gesture of goodwill, have also Gave us a travel voucher for another £315 which we hope they will use to book more Ryanair flights for the family in the very near future.
“We sincerely apologize for the error we made in this instance and have updated our briefing notes to all of our airport support agents to ensure this error does not happen again.”
Martin Lewis has issued a warning to holidaymakers planning to travel abroad this summer.
The founder of MoneySavingExpert warned that tourists could be caught off guard if they do not check the expiration dates of passports and GHIC/EHIC health cards.
If your passport is in order, it is also important to check your GHIC (Global Health Insurance Card) or EHIC (European Health Insurance Card), which gives you access to healthcare throughout the EU for the same prices as a local.
The GHIC has replaced the old fashioned European Health Insurance Cards, although your EHIC remains valid if it is within its expiry date.