Traveling is for everyone, even with physical disabilities. The thrill of moving to a new environment boosts anyone. Aside from the obvious excitement of traveling, anyone can switch locations based on their preferences or plans.
Nonetheless, traveling can be a headache, even for physically capable people. If a person with a disability intends to travel, especially via air, it is super necessary to plan ahead of time. Booking your flights early and informing the airline of your physical incapacity are great ways to prepare for your flight.
People traveling with disabilities do need all the help they can get, especially from their airlines. However, it is sad that a few classless flight companies have a reputation for placing disabled persons using their services in unfortunate conditions during their trips.
Wizz Air is one airline with discriminatory policies against physically incapable passengers. Tons of reports from previous passengers reveal how these distasteful policies from this company have either ruined their trips or made it hell to endure.
One such negative experience hurt a particular female passenger so much as she narrated the incident to our correspondent.
Read her side of the story in the report below.
“Wizz Air forced me to sit at the back even after purchasing an extra seat”
I’m not new to flying with injuries, especially on the legs. As an athlete, I get injured and like to take short holidays once I gain a bit of mobility. It’s a culture for me as I can loosen up in a new environment and feel better generally.
I chose Wizz Air for my trip and booked a return ticket. I heard it was a great budget airline, and since I thought my holiday location would be quite expensive to stay in, I had to stick to a budget, which should start from my flight.
But hey! I wasn’t prepared for what was ahead. Wizz Air made my trip the most exhausting ever. Starting from an almost 3-hour delay at the airport without a clear reason or even an apology.
The attendants wouldn’t let me in with my wheelchair. They told me they had no provision for any type of wheelchair that wasn’t manually operated. I thought that was understandable and asked if they had the kind of wheelchairs I could use to get on board. But no, they didn’t have any provisions for that either and said I could have mentioned my disability while booking the flight.
It was really awkward since I wasn’t the one who booked my trip. But I have been flying since I was 7, and even with an injury, I never had to inform any airline I’ve flown with about my condition. But heck! This airline made it really strange.
I somehow managed to get on board. The seat I was allocated to had minimal legroom. And with my broken knee, I just couldn’t manage the tiny space on my preferred seat. I called the attention of the officials and laid out my complaints. But it just got more awkward.
First, I thought I was being ignored for 20 minutes without a solution. But no! They had other less impressive plans. I was then told I needed to purchase an extra seat since I was a passenger that needed special assistance.
It was tricky since I was on a budget trip and wasn’t looking to spend more than I had planned. The cost of a new ticket was 35% more than the one I had previously booked. The crew and officials wouldn’t hear me out. They didn’t even appear sympathetic to my situation. They only made it look worse like it was all my fault. Wizz Air forced me to sit at the back even after purchasing an extra seat.
But there were more surprises for me. I was told I would be taken all the way back to the last rows, even after paying for an extra ticket. There were no options, the last row, or I wouldn’t be allowed onboard. I tried explaining why I’d like to keep my seat in front and an extra one, if possible, to someone that appeared to be a supervising official, but I wasn’t even sure he was listening to me.
It was a crazy humiliating experience I’d never want to have. I sobbed in shame as was helped down the back. There were no logical explanations or even a formal apology when I arrived at my destination. (Laughs) I spent the entire trip sulking, which heavily affected my mood throughout my holiday. I’d never fly Wizz Air ever in my life again or advise anyone to, even if they charged 2 cents for a trip to Antarctica!
Wizz Air’s notoriety include forceful compulsion
Further reports from previous passengers to our press team have gone ahead to reveal a general disregard for disabled passengers traveling with Wizz Air.
In another scenario, a source disclosed the unprofessional conduct of the Wizz Air flight crew, compelling her to switch seats to the last rows owing to an injured knee.
“I was mandated to go sit in the back. It was crazy ‘cause I wasn’t even seated close to the exit. When I got upset about switching seats, they told me that their policy states so.”
According to this passenger, she was made to give up her seat to get another one in the back row and take the middle seat.
“The middle seat at the back was just the last thing I expected. It was stuffy, and I could barely move since I had a broken leg in plaster. I asked them to do something about it, but they only suggested I pay for the seat on my left.”
But is Wizz Air looking out for its customers?
It’s no news that Wizz Air is the worst-ranked airline based on passenger complaints in nearly all areas of operation. According to the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), in December 2022, Wizz Air was ranked as the worst airline for escalated complaints, with 811 adverse reports per million UK passengers. This figure is worse than Ryanair and British Airways, which record 234 and 166, respectively.
The UK aviation regulatory body has cautioned the airline for the exponential amount of complaints received by ADR from passengers.
The head of consumer policy of the CAA, Anna Bowles, said that the airline’s behavior is just “unacceptable.” The CAA them to settle the claims as quickly as possible. Although Wizz Air apologized for the indiscipline, they still haven’t demonstrated any signs of picking up their slack.