Spirit Airlines is in hot water after mistakenly flying an unaccompanied 6-year-old to the wrong destination on Thursday, hundreds of miles from his family right before Christmas, the boy’s grandmother told WINK News.
Maria Ramos told WINK that her grandson, Casper, was supposed to arrive at Southwest Florida Airport in Fort Myers from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
The grandmother was horrified when she realized that only the boy’s bag made it onto the plane.
To make matters worse, it was poor Casper’s first-ever time flying.
“They told me, ‘No, he’s not on this flight. He missed his flight.’ I said, ‘No, he could not miss his flight because I have the check-in tag,” Ramos told the outlet. “I ran inside the plane to the flight attendant and I asked her, ‘Where’s my grandson? He was handed over to you at Philadelphia?’ She said, ‘No, I had no kids with me.’”
Casper was accidentally sent to Orlando International Airport — more than 200 miles away.
Ramos had to go on a four-hour drive to pick up the little boy, and told the outlet that this was one of the scariest experiences of her life.
Spirit Airlines has offered to reimburse her for the long trek she had to make to get her misplaced grandson, but she’s demanding an explanation.
“I want them to call me,” she said. “Let me know how my grandson ended up in Orlando. How did that happen? Did they get him off the plane? The flight attendant — after mom handed him with paperwork — did she let him go by himself? He jumped in the wrong plane by himself?”
Spirit Airlines acknowledged their mistake to WINK.
“On Dec. 21, an unaccompanied child traveling from Philadelphia (PHL) to Fort Myers (RSW) was incorrectly boarded on a flight to Orlando (MCO),” airline spokesman Michael Lopardi wrote in a statement.
He claimed that Casper “was always under the care and supervision of a Spirit Team Member, and as soon as we discovered the error, we took immediate steps to communicate with the family and reconnect them.”
“We take the safety and responsibility of transporting all of our Guests seriously and are conducting an internal investigation. We apologize to the family for this experience,” he added.
The mistake occurred on the biggest day of holiday travel, according to the FAA.