Airline staff at Bali airport give British tourists a musical send-off

Airline staff at Bali airport give British tourists a musical send-off as they board a rescue flight home

  • Upbeat employees sung John Lennon classic ‘Stand by Me’ at the airport
  • Couple Joel Nantel and girlfriend Millie Sandy, 24, were boarding rescue plane
  • Pair had to cut their three-month south-east Asia trip short due to coronavirus 
  • Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?

This is the heartwarming moment airline staff serenade British tourists with a John Lennon classic as they board a rescue flight in Bali.

Footage shows upbeat employees playing the tambourine and singing ‘Stand by Me’ as they wave goodbye to tourists leaving the tropical island paradise.

The clip was taken by Joel Nantel and his girlfriend Millie Sandy, 24, who had to cut their three-month tour of Indonesia, Malaysia, Borneo and the Phillipines short due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Cathay Pacific staff played the tambourine and sung John Lennon’s ‘Stand by Me’ as stranded British tourists boarded the repatriation flight in Denpasar, Bali

Joel Nantel and Millie Sandy, 24, were stranded in Bali when their flights were cancelled

The video also shows a member of staff playing the guitar as another conducts the impromptu choir.

It was filmed on March 30 as Mr Nantel and other tourists boarded an emergency Condor repatriation flight from Denpasar, Bali, to Frankfurt, Germany.

The British embassy in Indonesia had advised those stuck on the island to board this flight and then take a transfer to get back to the UK.

Posting the video on social media Mr Nantel said: ‘This is the send off we got from airline staff at Bali airport as we boarded our rescue flight home, courtesy of the British embassy.

‘Brought a huge smile to our faces after such a stressful ordeal! Finally home safe and sound.’

The couple had faced at least three cancelled flights after they were forced to return to Bali from Lombok, Indonesia, due to the outbreak.

The couple had at least three flights cancelled before they managed to find a way home

They also decided to return to Bali from Lombok after discovering their flight to the Philippines had been cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak

The pair had been in the second month of their three-month trip around southeast Asia

‘I don’t really know how to put into words how we’re currently feeling right now,’ Ms Sandy said on Instagram on March 24.

‘We’re currently stuck in Bali after our third flight being cancelled making us officially Brits stranded abroad.

‘We have no way of getting back to the UK and are resigned to relying on our government to send emergency flights for British nationals.’

On March 14 she wrote: ‘Not gonna lie, today has got me STRESSED about Covid-19.

‘We were supposed to fly to the Philippines tomorrow, but we woke up to find out all our flights have been cancelled!

‘We’ve decided to go back to Bali to see some friends and enjoy a few weeks of good food and diving, but it’s looking like we’re going to be heading home early.’

The couple were forced to cut their travel plans short on March 22 due to the global lockdown as the number of cases of coronavirus accelerated worldwide.

Bali has virtually cleared of tourists since the coronavirus lockdown. Above are travellers atthe Jimbaran beach in Bali this morning, despite it being closed due to the outbreak

Police vehicles spray disinfectant on roads in Bali, Indonesia, this morning

A shuttered cafe on the Jimbaran beach, which has been closed due to the outbreak

The Foreign Office in Indonesia has so far managed to get 5,000 Britons back to the UK by working with counterparts, including the German embassy.

Ambassador Owen Jenkins said on March 25: ‘All of us here at the British embassy and our consulate in Bali are doing everything we can to help you get home.

‘We’re hugely sympathetic to all our fellow Brits caught out by travel disruption in Bali. Many of you came here for a holiday to rest and relax. Now, you’re caught up in the biggest travel disruption the world has ever known.’

At Downing Street’s daily news briefing yesterday, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said that £75million was being made available for flights to bring stranded citizens home.

He said the government had negotiated with airlines including British Airways, Virgin, easyJet, Jet2 and Titan to make this possible. 

Priority has been given to tens of thousands of citizens marooned in Peru, India, South Africa, Ghana, Tunisia, China, Japan, Cuba and Ghana.

Dominic Raab, pictured licking his fingers, said yesterday that £75million had been made available to bring Brits back from other countries across the world

The Foreign Office has faced heavy criticism over its reaction to the crisis, with many accusing it of doing ‘too little, too late’.

BBC News reported that 12 people stuck in a hostel in Peru where someone had tested positive for coronavirus had been given inadequate help by the embassy.

They also reported the ambassador’s statement, which incorrectly said there were ten British nationals stuck in the hostel.

Indonesia has reported 1,528 cases of coronavirus since the outbreak began, including 19 in tourist hotspot Bali.

Families could wait up to four months for a refund on their cancelled holiday: Q&A

Can I get a refund for my package holiday?

On March 17, the Government advised against none essential overseas trips until at least April 15. Those with package holidays booked for before that date are entitled to a full refund within 14 days.

What’s a refund credit note?

These can be redeemed against a new booking at any time until July 31, at which point you will be entitled to a cash refund. Abta says these notes should be Atol protected, so you will get your money back even if the firm issuing it goes bust.

Am I covered if I just booked flights?

All flights on EU carriers travelling within the EU are covered. Some airlines are offering refunds, but others are only offering credits. If you booked a flight costing more than £100 using a credit card, then your card issuer should reimburse you under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act.

What about accommodation?

The owner should offer a refund or the chance to rebook but there’s no guarantee they will. This also applies to UK hotels or self-catering properties with bookings up to April 13. If it has shut and refuses to pay out, contact your card provider.

Will insurance help?

Insurers will want to know you have tried to get a refund from your holiday provider and credit card issuer first. Those with cancellation or travel disruption cover for holidays between March 17 and April 15 can claim on their insurance.

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