AT least 30 flights going to the different provinces in Mindanao were cancelled in Mactan-Cebu International Airport (MCIA) Friday due to Tropical Storm Vinta.
The cancellation of flights happened when most passengers were going home to spend the holidays with their families or take a vacation.
MCIA Authority General Manager Steve Dicdican said most of the cancelled flights involved small air crafts.
In the data provided by the MCIA Authority (MCIAA), 16 flights of Cebu Pacific were cancelled while 14 for Air Philippines.
These flights are supposed to travel to Cagayan de Oro, Ozamis, Butuan, Surigao, Siargao, Camiguin and Tandag, based on the report of MCIA personnel who are taking the shift of 5 a.m. to 1 p.m..
In order to assist the passengers and to entertain their inquiries, MCIA and other agencies put up help desks in the departure and arrival areas.
This is part of MCIAA’s Oplan Ligtas Byahe. An assistance desk of MCIAA, GMR-Megawide Cebu Airport Corp. (GMCAC) and police also set up stations there.
He advised passengers whose flights were cancelled to contact their airlines or rescheduling.
MCIAA and GMCAC also provided communication lines so stranded passengers can contact their families.
Dicdican said they also asked the airlines to give assistance to the stranded passengers.
Avigael Maningo, junior manager of GMCAC Corp. Communications Office, estimated 200 passengers whose flights were cancelled and were seen staying at the airport yesterday morning.
She said others with cancelled flights just went home in their respective residence within the city.
Gerardo Deduan, a passenger, said he and his family were supposed to leave for Butuan for a vacation, but their flight was cancelled.
His family had planned to ride a boat. When they learned that sea vessels were not allowed to sail, they bought plane tickets.
So she can travel to Cagayan her destination, another passenger Charlene Balacuit of Liloan said they were advised to take a flight to Caticlan for free yesterday.
However, she and her colleagues ended up going back to Cebu from Caticlan for they were not allowed to fly to Cagayan from there.
She said they tried taking a flight from Cebu to Butuan so they will reach Cagayan. (FMG)