April 15, 2024

Columbus Post

Complete News World

'I don't understand anything': Woman receives terminal cancer diagnosis – and must pay $8,000 to rebook flight

'I don't understand anything': Woman receives terminal cancer diagnosis – and must pay $8,000 to rebook flight
Air New Zealand has since apologized. (archive image)

Keystone

An American woman was diagnosed with terminal cancer while on vacation. When she wants to rebook her flight home, an expensive surprise awaits.

No time? Blue news in a nutshell for you

  • An American couple paid $23,000 for flights.
  • It costs the couple another $8,000 to re-enroll after a late cancer diagnosis.
  • Air New Zealand has now apologized to the couple.

Todd and Patricia Gereks paid $23,000 for flights from New York to Auckland, New Zealand. Business class flights mark the start of a very special four-month journey.

Six weeks after the vacation began, Patricia Gereks suddenly fell ill. Tests conducted in New Zealand revealed that he had gallbladder cancer. Doctors estimated he had four months to live.

On doctors' advice, the couple decided to go home. In conversation with “Radio New Zealand” Todd says he spent four hours arranging a return flight.

Although it was declared an emergency, Air New Zealand staff showed no mercy. “An employee told me I would have to pay about $8,000 for flights, emergency or not.” It didn't matter to the staff that the couple had already put $23,000 on the table.

“I was really surprised that people weren't very helpful. We ended up paying $8,000 — even though I didn't understand it.

After all, after “Radio New Zealand” reported, the airline contacted the couple and apologized. Those in charge announced that they were scrutinizing internal processes – and wanted to refund the couple's money.