John Paton was traveling with Ryanair from Newcastle Airport and wants to share his experiences with Looking4Parking with other tourists.
One holidaymaker was furious when he found no one at a carpark near his airport.
John Paton and Sheila Paton, both 69 years old, arrived at Looking4Parking’s plot near Newcastle Airport to prepare for their trip to Malaga, Spain.
John had paid in advance but no one collected his car nor answered Ryanair’s phone number.
A recorded message from the retired teacher claimed that he was told by the service via a recorded message. “not in operation at the moment”.
Today, speak today Chronicle LiveJohn said: “Luckily we arrived in good time before our flight, as otherwise we would have missed it.
“We were in panic as our flight time was approaching. So we drove to the airport parking office to find out that our voucher wasn’t valid at the airport.
“We had no choice but pay for more parking through the airport’s official site and had to pay another £66.99 to park. It was awful – we were conscious that we were running out of time to get through security to catch our flight. The whole thing was very stressful.”
John and Sheila from Monkseaton Tyne and Wear enjoyed their vacation but have now tried to get a refund.
Ryanair, Looking4Parking and others are still to be held responsible for this mistake.
John continued: “We contacted Ryanair as the booking was made thought their website and the payment went to them, and were told to contact Looking4Parking, as the service was provided by them.
“None of the companies were very helpful.
“The service was supposed to ensure a relaxing start to our holiday, but instead we ended up with just enough time to get through security before our flight was called. I’ve got my money back – eventually – but I want to warn others who might have already booked to be aware there may be a problem.”
Newcastle Airport expressed concern about what it called “a sham” “an illegitimate parking provider”You claim to be offering a service at the airport
A spokesperson said: “Several passengers have had a negative experience with the operator and we have been assisting them with replacement, on the day, car parking products where possible.”
Ryanair, which has 19 routes departing from the hub, stated: “The car park operation is legitimate. ‘Looking4’ work with the operator at multiple UK airports. Looking4 stringently checks all operators and as soon as they became aware that the car park at Newcastle was experiencing operational challenges, they were immediately removed from sale and refunded any customers who were inconvenienced.
“Ryanair also immediately informs Looking4 of any customer problems. They then take the appropriate steps. Mr Paton was refunded £49.67 on 15 Th of March for the amount paid, and a second payment of £66.99 was made on the 31 stMarch, which included the additional payment that the customer had to make at the airport.”
John claims it took nearly a month – and around 20 emails – before his initial £49.67 was refunded, and a further two weeks – and only when Chronicle Live became involved – to get the additional £66.67 back.
A Newcastle Airport spokeswoman said: “Recently, we were alerted to an illegal parking company claiming to provide a Newcastle International Airport parking service. We have worked closely together with the car parking consolidators to remove the unofficial product from market to protect our customers.
“If passengers are looking to book car parking at the airport, we recommend they book direct through the airport’s website or via the Airport call centre to ensure they receive an official on-site product.”
ChronicleLive reached out to Looking4Parking in an attempt to get a comment. However, the company has yet not responded.