A Qld Woman Claims She Had To Crawl Down Plane Aisle After Jetstar Didn’t Provide A Wheelchair

jetstar plane on tarmac

A Queensland woman with a disability has slammed Jetstar after she claimed she had no choice but to crawl down the aisle of a plane when a wheelchair wasn’t available.

Natalie Curtis opened up about the “humiliating” incident on Sunrise on Monday morning.

She flew from Singapore to Bangkok and was able to use an aisle wheelchair — which is designed to fit in the aisle — to get to her seat when she boarded the plane.

But when it was time to disembark, Curtis claimed staff — who she admitted to having “a bit of a language barrier” with — told her she’d have to pay to use the plane accessible wheelchair.

“When we arrived (staff) were asking us to actually pay and I didn’t really comprehend it, and I’m like ‘no I’m not paying to be able to get off this plane’,” she said.

“They all just stood around for a while and the option that was left was for me to get on the floor and crawl.

“It was extremely humiliating.”

Curtis said she couldn’t use her own wheelchair, as it was too big to fit in the aisle.

Curtis said her friend Natasha Elford would’ve carried her off the plane if it weren’t for a knee injury.

Elford said Jetstar staff offered to lift Curtis up and carried her, but warned “if they dropped her [it] would’ve been 10 times worse”.

According to Yahoo!, it’s understood Jetstar staff requested the aisle wheelchair once the plane had landed in Bangkok, but were told it wouldn’t have been available for at least 40 minutes.

Jetstar apologised for the incident in a statement and denied requesting payment for the aisle wheelchair.

“We unreservedly apologise to Ms Curtis for her recent experience while travelling with us,” the spokesperson said.

“We are committed to providing a safe and comfortable travel experience for all our customers, including those requiring specific assistance.

“Regrettably, this was not the case for Ms Curtis following a miscommunication that resulted in the delay of an aisle chair being made available at the gate on arrival and we are looking into what happened as a matter of urgency.

“At no point was an aisle chair withheld due to a request for payment.”

Jetstar confirmed it had offered Curtis a refund on her flights, as well as “additional compensation”.