• Sweden's news in English

Thousand of Swedish charter tourists stranded

TT/The Local · 17 Apr 2010, 10:15

Published: 17 Apr 2010 10:15 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Tour operator Fritidsresor said it was seeking alternative modes of transport to bring its customers back to Sweden after a cloud of volcanic ash from Iceland forced airspace closures across much of Europe, with Scandinavia especially hard hit.

"Fritidsresor alone has 4,000 passengers who are stranded, and it's fairly evenly spread among the other travel operators," said Fritidsresor's communications director Lottie Knutson.

"Nor is there any sign of the situation improving over the weekend. The number of people stranded is growing day by day."

She added that the figure of 10,000 stranded charter tourists was a rough estimate based on the market share held by the respective Swedish operators.

A number of Fritidsresor's customers travelling home from Thailand are now stuck in Cyprus, while tourists returning from Cape Verde, off the west coast of Africa, have come no further than Majorca.

"In order to help them we are of course looking at boat transportation. We have also rented and bought almost thirty buses which are standing at the ready, mainly in Athens.

"We're also looking at trying to get flight clearance from Cyprus to Athens, or Trieste in northern Italy. From there we can then take those stranded back to the Nordic region in convoys of buses."

Fritidsresor was also exploring the possibility of flying routes around the section of airspace that had been shut down.

"That's only something a long distance machine can manage," said Knutson.

She stressed however that no firm decisions had yet been taken as to how to bring charter travellers back to Sweden. She predicted that customers would be notified on Saturday afternoon at the earliest.

"No decisions have been made yet but, if required, the actual transportation will not happen until tomorrow [Sunday]. We'll continue to work on the practicalities over the course of the day," said Knutson.

Story continues below…

Fritidsresor also calculated that around 10,000 people who had booked charter trips would not now be able to leave Sweden for their destinations.

"This in itself entails a lot of frustration and disappointment, especially since people are aware that trips are cheap now and they won't get the same holiday for the same amount of money in high season."

Knutson said it was difficult to calculate the financial cost for charter operators until the cloud has dispersed and normal service resumes.

"But at a rough estimate it is costing each major tour operator up to around 10 million kronor ($1.4 million) per day."

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

13:16 April 17, 2010 by Ramachandran
How much damage these ashes will do for a human body?

What are all the remides?

How to prevent!!!
03:36 April 18, 2010 by Davey-jo

"How much damage these ashes will do for a human body?" Judging by the poor woman in the photo these ashes give a facial rictus somewhat akin to sitting on a cactus.
16:34 April 18, 2010 by karex
Ash that turns into jagged glass when it cools is not something you would want in your lungs...
Today's headlines
Prime Minister to meet Swedish troops in Iraq
Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven and his Kurdish counterpart Nechervan Barzani. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Sweden's Prime Minister Löfven is set to meet Swedish troops in Iraq on Tuesday.

Swedish politicians wage war on winter time
Soon it will look like this on your way home from work in Sweden. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

Should Sweden stick with summer time all year round?

'Don't turn the Pope into a global teddy bear'
Sweden's Queen Silvia and Princess Leonore visiting Pope Francis in the Vatican last year. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

It's time to hold the Pope to account and make sure he turns his words about reform into action, argues a minister of the Swedish Church ahead of Pope Francis' visit to Sweden.

Löfven: 'Sweden will double its number of troops in Iraq'
Stefan Löfven and Haider al-Abadi during the visit on Monday. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven has promised to double his country's number of troops in Iraq following a meeting with Iraqi counterpart Haider al-Abadi on Monday.

Will Swedes soon be looking for fairtrade porn?
Should Swedes think fairtrade with porn? Photo: Karin Malmhav/SvD/TT

A fairtrade attitude to pornography would be beneficial, Sweden's health minister told The Local.

Presented by Stockholm University
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
Simon Paulin/imagebank.sweden.se

Nordic fashion took centre stage in the Swedish capital last week as Stockholm University hosted the “first-ever” academic conference looking at luxury and sustainability in the fashion industry.

Referee, coach and parents in Swedish youth football fight
File photo of a referee holding a red card not related to the story. Photo: Stefan Jerrevång/TT

A football dad broke his leg in the brawl in front of 11-year-old kids after a Hammarby youth football game.

Illicit abattoir kept more than 100 bulls' penises
A couple of young bulls not related to the story. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT

Dried cattle genitalia, goats' heads and hundreds of litres of lard were just a few of the many strange finds discovered when police raided a property in Sweden.

This is officially Sweden's most beautiful beard
The most beautiful beard in Sweden. Photo: Memo Göcek

According to a jury of barbers and 'well known bearded profiles', that is.

Presented by Invest Stockholm
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm

You might think it’s hard to make friends in a new city. But if at first you don’t succeed – try something else!

Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
People-watching: October 21st-23rd
Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
People-watching: October 20th
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
Property of the week: Linnéstaden, Gothenburg
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Sponsored Article
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
Sponsored Article
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
People-watching: October 12th
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
Property of the week: Triangeln, Malmö
Sweden unveils Europe's first elk hut
People-watching: October 7th-9th
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
Missing rune stone turns up in Sweden
Nobel Prize 2016: Chemistry
jobs available