WATERLOO REGION — Not one, not two, but three Canadian airlines blindsided Alaa Sakr on the same day as she scrambled to get her family home from their Mexican vacation.

She’s out of pocket about $2,500 after airlines put her family through two cancelled flights and a lengthy delay that caused an overnight layover.

“What happened is a disaster,” the Hamilton woman said, arguing the federal government must do more to protect passengers. “I dealt with three airlines on that day and all of them didn’t care about us.”

Here’s what happened.

Blindside No. 1: After a week on vacation, Sakr, her husband, their toddler, and her mother check out of their resort at 7:30 a.m. Jan. 1 and head for the airport in Cancun, Mexico.

There they learn Flair Airlines has cancelled their 11:52 a.m. return flight to the Region of Waterloo International Airport at Breslau.

Flair explains by email at 8:04 a.m. that it cancelled the flight “due to aircraft damage at the airport within airline’s control, but required for safety.” Sakr is not told that ground equipment bumped into the Flair jetliner at the Breslau airport before it was to fly to Mexico to collect them.

Flair tells the family it can’t bring them home until Jan. 15. The airline will not put them up in a hotel. The family is without trip insurance, has daycare and work obligations, and can’t afford to wait two weeks in Mexico.

They scramble for another way home but find no other flights that day to the Breslau airport.

Blindside No. 2: The family hunts for same-day tickets to Pearson International Airport in Toronto. They see four seats on Air Transat but the cost at $5,000 is far more than $2,200 they spent for return flights on Flair.

Online they find

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