Vijayawada, March 29 (IANS) Seventeen passengers were left stranded at the Vijayawada international airport on Wednesday after an Air India Express flight to Kuwait took off three hours before the departure time mentioned on their tickets.
The passengers were shocked when they reported at the airport at 11 a.m. but were told that the flight had left at 9.55 a.m.
The departure time of the IX695 flight was 1.10 p.m., as per the tickets booked by these passengers two days ago. The passengers complained that they had no prior information about the change in the departure time, adding that they were asked to report at 11 a.m., but were not informed about the new departure timing.
When the passengers approached the airline staff at the airport, they were told the change in timing was intimated in various websites where tickets were sold.
“How can they expect us to check with the websites for changes in the departure timing,” asked Paul, one of the passengers who missed the flight.
Only those passengers who booked after the rescheduling boarded the flight.
The flight reached Vijayawada from Trichy at 9 a.m. and left for Kuwait at 9.55 a.m. It was earlier announced that the flight will reach Vijayawada from Trichy at 12.15 p.m. and take off for Kuwait at 1.10 p.m.
Airport officials said the airline had rescheduled the departure due to some issues that are not uncommon in international operations. They also claimed that the airline provided alternative to some of the passengers.