Monday, 2 Oct 2023

Unreturned calls, automated emails: Albertans stuck abroad have trouble returning home

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has estimated three million Canadians are abroad. While he admits not all want to come home, he’s urging those that do to do so as soon as possible due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Following that advice is proving extremely difficult though.

At the start of March, Edmontonians Juliette and James Statt took their four children on a 12-day cruise. They left from Florida and went to Barcelona.

When they arrived, they discovered the country was on the verge of a complete lock-down.

The family of six managed to get to Amsterdam, but has since had three flights home to Canada cancelled. They’re anticipating an Air Canada flight booked for Saturday will at least get them to Toronto.

“We are hoping that this one on Saturday sticks and we can come home,” explained Juliette.

Sheila Ethier is in a similar position.

The St. Albert resident is in Mexico and was scheduled to return April 7.

Listening to federal advice, she moved her ticket up to March 25.

On Monday, WestJet, the carrier she’s flying with, announced it was suspending all international flights after March 22.

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