BUSINESS

Porter Passengers En Route To Chemotherapy Get Bumped From Flight

12/30/2014 10:48 EST | Updated 03/01/2015 05:59 EST
Bloomberg via Getty Images
Porter Airlines Inc. aircraft sit parked at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, on Friday, June 28, 2013. Porter Airlines Inc., the Canadian carrier that now flies only turboprops, plans to add its first jets to start long-haul flights in an expanded challenge to Air Canada and WestJet Airlines Ltd. Photographer: Brent Lewin/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A man from Thunder Bay says he has concerns about the way Porter Airlines bumps passengers from over-sold flights.

Greg Ulok was flying with his daughter, Xenia, to Toronto for her cancer treatment. He said he and his daughter were told they were being bumped because they paid the lowest fare for their seats.

But his daughter could not miss the chemotherapy appointment, Ulok said, and he thought someone else might have been willing to take a different flight.

"In my opinion, the best answer for that would be to ask for volunteers. None of that happened. We were kept to the last second, told at the last minute that we're not going to get our plane.”

Porter staff were understanding, Ulok said, but he still wants answers about the bumping policy.

'Several people would offer, for sure'

A spokesperson for Porter said its policy is to ask for volunteers who are willing to be bumped, and is looking into the situation.

That policy is what Ulok was counting on.

"The $500 they offer for people not to get on a plane ... there would be at least a few people that would stay behind and take the $500,” he said.

"Not to mention if they [knew the] situation ... several people would offer, for sure, for Xenia to go to Toronto and [they] stay behind, so she could get to Toronto and go on with her procedures."

Ulok said Xenia, who has Lymphoblastic Lymphoma, has to go to Toronto once a month. If she misses an appointment, her treatment schedule has to be changed as well.

He ended up buying a flight on Westjet and made it to the appointment on time.

There was a silver lining — someone offered to pay for their flight. Ulok said they could afford to pay for the flight, but he was very touched by the gesture.

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