A Diverted Flight Forced This Couple to Carpool 5 Hours with 5 Strangers

Reportedly, Allegiant didn't offer any compensation for a hotel or rental.

Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc./Getty Images
Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc./Getty Images
Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc./Getty Images

Lately, as an end-of-year travel trend, it looks like airlines are very into diverting flights and leaving passengers stranded in remote locations.

Just the other day, a Delta Air Lines flight left almost 300 passengers stranded in a small town in Canada and put them up in military barracks overnight when it was originally supposed to fly to Detroit. And now, a new instance of this issue has surfaced, but the protagonist (or the villain, depending on the point of view), this time, is Allegiant Air.

In a video that recently went viral on TikTok, one traveler shares their incredibly stressful experience. “This is a photo of my husband and I with five complete strangers after we had to take a five hour road trip with them in the middle of the night because Allegiant Air basically left us stranded in Appleton, Wisconsin,” the TikTok user explains at the beginning of the video.In short, here’s what happened. Due to foggy conditions, the plane-which took off from Florida’s Orlando Sanford International Airport-couldn’t land in the original destination of South Bend, Indiana, and it was also running low on fuel. The only option, then, was to land in Appleton, Wisconsin.

However, once the plane landed, conditions aren’t ideal there either. “We get to this airport and it’s basically closed,” the video poster explains. “All of the restaurants are closed, there’s nobody waiting to get on other flights, and the only option that we have for food is a vending machine.”

With a shut-down airport and no TSA staff or flight crew available, it’s impossible to both go past security with the possibility of reentering and also to retrieve your own checked bag. Reportedly, Allegiant eventually offered to fly everyone back to Florida, but passengers on the plane are desperately trying to find another solution.

“So we’re like, ‘Hey, can you guys help us out with the hotel? Can you help us get a rental car? I paid you to take me to Indiana. You brought me to Wisconsin. I understand shit happens, but surely sending us back to Florida cannot be the only option,'” explains the video poster. “And Allegiant is like ‘No, that’s the best we can do for you.'”

After many issues-the rental car company by the airport initially didn’t want to release one-way cars and there was only a limited number of available vehicles anyways-the poster and their husband managed to get a one-way rental car, and teamed up with another passenger and their family for a five-hour journey to Indiana.

“So the seven of us descended into this Chevy Traverse and took off on a five-hour road trip and we didn’t end up getting to South Bend until maybe 2:30 or so in the morning,” they recall. “And of course none of us know each other so-it really wasn’t that awkward, I think we did a good job with the small talk and such but it’s still like-we shouldn’t have had to do that.”

Apparently, all Allegiant did to ease the pain of being stranded was… basically nothing. According to the poster, the airline only offered $100 off the next flight with them.

However, wild mess aside, the poster admits it felt like an out-of-a-movie situation. “This is giving Hallmark Christmas movie vibes,” they say in the video. One person in the comments agrees. “There was literally a Hallmark Christmas movie this year with this exact storyline,” reads the comment. “It was called ‘Holiday Road.'”Want more Thrillist? Follow us on InstagramTikTokTwitterFacebookPinterest, and YouTube.

Serena Tara is a Staff Writer on the News team at Thrillist. She will beg you not to put pineapple on pizza. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.


Mad Mex’s New Menu Item Is Inspired by a Popular Mexican Street Food

mad mex chicken al pastor

Mexican restaurant chain Mad Mex has dropped a new protein, and it’s one of the most popular street foods in Mexico.

Enter, Chicken Al Pastor. It’s traditionally made with pork and grilled on a spinning rotisserie with a pineapple sitting a top, but Mad Mex has put its own spin on it, serving chicken bathed in an Al Pastor marinade with a touch of juicy pineapple.

You can order the protein-packed filling in your favourite burrito, bowl, quesadilla, nachos, or in a taco.

As always, these things are here for a good time, not a long time. Pop into your local Mad Mex restaurant, order delivery or through the Mad Mex app today.

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