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EasyJet delay forces passengers into quarantine

written by Hannah Dowling | August 27, 2020

easyJet’s first A320neo delivery (Australian Aviation archives)

A number of Britons have been forced into an unexpected 14 days of quarantine upon their arrival back in the UK, after a delayed easyJet flight forced them out of green-listed Gibraltar and over the border to Spain.

EasyJet flight U2 8906 was due to depart the British territory of Gibraltar for London’s Gatwick Airport on Monday evening, however due to poor weather conditions, the flight was delayed overnight.

Further, the carrier was unable to secure enough hotel accommodation within the small holiday destination for all guests onboard the flight, with the only viable options lying just on the other side of the border, in current COVID hotspot Spain.

Reports suggest up to 80 holidaymakers were bussed from the airport, that sits just shy of the border, over into Spain for the evening, which unfortunately forced these passengers into a 14-day self quarantine period upon arrival back in the UK.

Spain was removed from the ‘holiday corridor’ list with the UK just last month, as cases of COVID-19 began to soar, including 7,000 new cases reported on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Gibraltar remains on the green-list with the UK, with just 53 active cases of the virus currently remaining on the Rock as of yesterday.

Affected passengers were rightly unhappy about the situation, with one questioning: “My option is to move from low COVID Gibraltar to high COVID Spain. I cannot afford to self-isolate. EasyJet will you pay my loss of earnings?”


One passenger noted the irony in placing passengers who had spent the night in COVID-safe Gibraltar and hotspot Spain back onto the same aircraft the following day, while another told the media he overheard some passengers intentions to keep the incident “hush-hush” from authorities in England, so as to attempt to avoid mandatory quarantine.

A spokesperson from easyJet spoke of the incident, saying: “As a result of low visibility weather conditions in Gibraltar easyJet had to delay flight EZY8906 to Gatwick overnight. The safety and wellbeing of our customers and crew is our highest priority and we would never operate a flight unless it is safe to do so.

“We tried to provide as many hotel rooms in Gibraltar as possible however, due to a shortage of rooms it was not possible to provide these for all customers so we offered accommodation in Spain for those who wanted it. Some customers found accommodation themselves in Gibraltar and easyJet will reimburse the cost to them.

“Whilst the delay was outside of our control, we would like to apologise to customers for the inconvenience caused as a result of the weather. EasyJet has a number of bio security measures in place for onboard the aircraft including the mandatory wearing of masks.”


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