02/15/2013 22:25 EST | Updated 04/17/2013 05:12 EDT

Sunwing passengers who endured 17-hour flight delay return home

A group of passengers who suffered a 17-hour delay on a Sunwing flight headed for Costa Rica on Friday Feb. 8 returned home from their trip on Friday evening.

The delay the group of 200 endured at the beginning of their trip was caused by the mega-storm that put Toronto under 20 centimetres of snow.

"The experience while on that plane was unacceptable," said Sunwing passenger Michelle Mangotich after touching down at Pearson airport.

The flight was scheduled to leave Pearson at 7 a.m. on Friday, and left the gate on time.

The plane went through a de-icing process, however the machine that dispenses the liquid malfunctioned created a considerable delay.

Due to various other problems, including worsening weather conditions, airport congestion, ice in unreachable parts of the plane, fuel capacity and limited gate availability.

According to a Sunwing spokesman, the passengers were told about some of the problems, but not all of them.

"I don't think that the staff provided for us, and did enough for us," Mangotich said.

The spokesman said that the conditions at the airport that day were some of the worst Sunwing had ever seen. More than half the flights scheduled to leave were cancelled throughout the day.

The flight finally departed close to midnight after 17 cramped hours of waiting on the tarmac.

As an apology, passengers have been given a $25 food voucher and a letter offering $150 off a future trip.