The American canceled a 10-year-old’s flight but didn’t tell her parents

The American canceled a 10-year-old's flight but didn't tell her parents
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  • American Airlines has not told the parents of a 10-year-old flying alone that her flight was canceled.
  • Family members picked her up at the airport and the airline didn’t know she was gone.
  • The child was given meal vouchers but told he would have to pay for dinner himself.

A mother said her 10-year-old daughter’s desire to travel was shattered after American Airlines canceled her connecting flight but failed to notify her parents.

The child traveled alone from Richmond, Virginia to visit family in Boston on July 18, connecting at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York City.

Miesha Vargas, the child’s mother, said she only found out the flight was canceled when her daughter called.

“She called me hysterically and said the flight was canceled and I asked her to pass the phone on to speak to a gate agent who said they would try to rebook another flight the same day,” she said.

The child was escorted by a temporary worker after he arrived in New York at 11:30 a.m. until the airline could put him on the next available flight at 8 p.m.

Family members scheduled to pick up the child from Boston Airport instead drove six hours to JFK, where the child was dropped off at a store around 5 p.m. American Airlines didn’t know she had left the airport when the child’s father called a customer service representative.

Vargas had prepared her daughter for a short layover between flights, assuring her that her family would meet her in Boston.

“She was scared and said she didn’t want to fly anymore,” her mother said. “This experience destroyed her love of travel.”

Vargas said it was stressful knowing her daughter was stranded at one of America’s busiest airports, while her husband was “angry” that AA hadn’t signed for their daughter to be picked up by her family.

“Our family said she was very calm that night, which is not her normal self. She is usually very talkative and bubbly but hardly ever speaks.”

The child, who was flying solo for the first time, was offered a voucher for lunch but was told he would have to pay for dinner with his own money.

Temporarily the same airline lost a 12-year-old unaccompanied child at Miami Airport earlier this month. The child’s mother said she was not informed by the airline until an hour after landing and was found by the child’s father.

American Airlines did not respond to Insider’s request for comment.

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