PEI

After 7 cancelled flights, Island snowbirds still waiting to get home from Mexico

John Jack and his wife Cathy have been in Mexico since December. Their flight home in April was cancelled, just as authorities had warned it might be.

7 times they've booked flights; 7 times the flights have been cancelled

Cathy and John Jack say they've remained in contact with the Canadian consulate while awaiting a flight back to Canada from Mexico. (Submitted by Cathy Jack)

An Island man who's stuck in Mexico is hoping his attempts to book a flight home will finally work out.

John Jack and his wife Cathy have booked flights home seven times, and he said, those flights have been cancelled each time.

"I've lost at least $6,000 of employment and possibly my job before I get home. We've maxed out two $15,000 credit cards," said Jack in a telephone call Thursday from the couple's rented accommodations in Playa del Carmen, Mexico.

"Because of COVID-19, they're not going … to me it doesn't seem fair."

Jack and his wife flew to Mexico in December, intending to stay the winter and return April 13, on a pre-booked flight. When the Canadian government put out the word in March that it was time for travellers to come home, the Jacks hoped their booking in April would hold up.

John Jack and wife Cathy are waiting to come home from Mexico. 'I miss my friends. I love P.E.I.," he says. (Submitted by Cathy Jack)

That flight was cancelled, and the couple's trip south began to grow unintentionally long. They've had to move to new accommodations three times, according to Jack, and their tourist visas have expired. They're now in the legal process of obtaining extensions.

Thankful for help

Other Canadians still in Mexico are facing the same struggles, according to Jack. He said they're thankful for the help of local residents as the months go by.

"Some of the people that have the least here helped us the most while they struggle with this themselves," said Jack. "These people subsisted day to day before this thing came in and completely destroyed their economy." 

I'm going to do cartwheels on my front lawn— John Jack

A flight home in July was cancelled last Sunday, according to Jack. They now have a booking for June 28.

"Whether that will hold, it's a bit like taking your gun outside and pointing it up in the air and hoping a goose flies over," said Jack.

"The first thing I'm going to do when I get home to P.E.I., is very emotional. I'm going to do cartwheels on my front lawn. I miss my friends. I love P.E.I."

The couple remain in contact with the Canadian consulate.

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