The travel nightmare that’s hit a nerve in India

There’s nothing like a bit of travel chaos to get people talking. Add a dash of perceived discrimination into the mix, and it’s the perfect recipe for a social media storm.

That’s where Air France finds itself right now. In the eye of a storm. More than two million people have viewed a letter written by a disgruntled passenger from India. Thousands have shared it on Twitter. Tens of thousands on Facebook.

It’s written by 24-year-old Jay Shah, who was travelling home from New York to Mumbai via Paris last month. He calls his letter One Night in Paris. So far, so romantic-sounding, but the story he tells is far from it. He recounts in great detail why he feels he and other passengers were poorly treated (the letter runs to nine pages).

In summary, his flight was cancelled. Some passengers – those with the relevant visas – were put up in a hotel overnight. But the rest, most of whom were Indian, were left in the terminal until their replacement flight more than 24 hours later. Some slept on the floor. There weren’t enough blankets. He claims the staff were cold-hearted in their response when one man asked to be rescheduled to make it back for his father’s funeral.


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