Passengers told to drop bags off at airport day before they fly amid travel chaos

British Airways has contacted passengers asking them to check their luggage in before returning for their flight the next day to ease airport pressure

Passengers at airports across the country have been hit

Holidaymakers are being asked to drop their bags off the night before flights to ease pressure at havoc-hit airports.

British Airways has contacted passengers flying from London Gatwick or Heathrow Terminal 5 asking them to check their luggage in before returning for their flight the next day.

In an email to travelers flying from Gatwick, BA said: “We want to do everything we can to help you avoid spending your time queuing.”

BA cut 10,000 jobs during the pandemic and has struggled to recruit enough staff to meet booming demand for holidays abroad since travel restrictions were lifted.

It also ran its “overnight bag drop service” last summer when it faced staff shortages.

All passengers on the booking must be present to check in bags, so entire families would need to travel to the airport in the evening and then return the following morning for their flight.

Huge queues formed for check-in and security at Manchester Airport

Meanwhile, hundreds of TUI passengers were left outraged after they received a text saying their trips were canceled from Manchester Airport.

Holidaymakers say they had a grueling four-hour wait to get through check-in and security, followed by a four-hour flight delay “waiting for a pilot”.

The troubled flight to Kos, out of Terminal 2, was supposed to take off at 3.45pm on Saturday.

But one family says they were informed by text from TUI that their £4,500 trip, including flights and an all-inclusive hotel, were cancelled.

George Sharp said: “It was like circumstances I’ve never ever heard of before.

“They went to board and then they canceled not just the flight but the entire holiday.

“TUI staff refused to face up to anyone and the police arrived to tell them to go back through security to collect their bags and go home.”

A spokesman for TUI said: “We understand how disappointing and frustrating this is and we do apologize for any inconvenience caused.

“We would like to thank customers at Manchester airport today for their patience and understanding at this exceptionally busy time.”

A spokesman for Manchester Airport said they were in talks with airline operators to resolve the problem.

Passengers faced hours of delays at Manchester before their flight was cancelled.

Children were left in tears after their holiday plans were ruined

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He said: “We are aware of challenges being faced by a number of airlines and handling agents, which is leading to delays at check-in and baggage reclaim for some passengers.”

The chaos follows huge delays for half-term holidaymakers as flights were axed, roads gridlocked and ferry services missed.

Up to 30,000 passengers were left stranded after easyJet canceled more than 200 departures, sparking bedlam at Gatwick, Manchester and Bristol.

And British Airways grounded a further 120 short-haul European and domestic flights from Heathrow.

There were also long delays on the A20 towards the Port of Dover in Kent, causing many to miss their ferries.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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