A British couple planning to travel to Spain for a family vacation was instead flown 1,500 miles away to Lithuania after airport staff escorted them to the wrong aircraft.

Andrew and Victoria Gore, both 47, intended to board a flight to Barcelona and then head to Costa Brava on May 25 to celebrate Mr. Gore’s 47th birthday. But they boarded the wrong flight with the budget airline Ryanair, as the rest of their family made it to Barcelona, according to BBC News.

The couple told BBC News they were feeling “distraught” after the mixup, which they described as a “nightmare.”

“We were told they were definitely on the flight and they said ‘just relax’, so we had a sleep as we’d been up early,” Mr. Gore told the outlet. “When I woke up, it didn’t look like Spain out the window, I turned my phone on and it said ‘Welcome to Lithuania.'”

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Mr. Gore, an amputee, and Mrs. Gore, who is autistic, ended up on a flight to Kaunas, Lithuania, after booking special assistance at Bristol Airport in England. Passengers with disabilities or reduced mobility are legally entitled to special assistance at airports without additional charge when traveling from various regions, including the U.K. and the U.S.

“We have been away lots of times and always had special assistance, so this was nothing new to us,” Mrs. Gore told BBC News. “The minibus took us to the Ryanair plane and they checked our boarding pass and let us on the plane.”

Bristol Airport said it was working to investigate what happened and to make improvements to ensure this type of incident does not happen again, while Ryanair said crews make several announcements before departure about the flight destination and attributed the error to Bristol Airport’s special assistance provider, BBC News reported.

A spokesperson for Ryanair said that Bristol Airport’s special assistance provider boarded the couple onto the wrong flight to Kaunas “despite gate signage clearly displaying the flight’s destination.” 

“Before departing, crew make several announcements advising passengers of the flight’s destination,” the spokesperson said, adding that they “sincerely apologize to these passengers for any inconvenience.”

A Bristol Airport spokesperson said: “We’ve worked with our business partners to investigate this incident. All customers have their travel documentation checked by the airline or their ground handling agent before boarding an aircraft.”

“Since being informed of the issue, Bristol Airport has worked with our airline handling agent and special assistance provider to investigate the circumstances and to introduce improvements for the future,” the spokesperson added. “We will contact the customer with information to direct their complaint to the correct business partner for resolution.”

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“Our flight number came up at the gate, and we were taken to the bottom of the plane steps, where the ground staff checked our boarding passes,” Mr. Gore said. “When we got on the plane, the stewardess checked our passes again.”

After alerting Ryanair officials that they were in the wrong country, they were booked on the next available flight to Barcelona, which was not until the next morning and from Riga in the neighboring country of Latvia.

The airline booked the couple overnight accommodation and a 150-mile Uber ride to the airport.

They eventually landed in Barcelona and made it to their hotel on the Costa Brava, but their bags did not make it until two days later, the outlet noted, since they did not board their initial flight from Bristol, England.

“It was surreal, and an experience I never want to have ever again. Our family were worried sick, and we were exhausted when we did eventually arrive,” Mr. Gore said. “Even though they took us to the right place eventually, the experience had already happened, the damage had been done, and we can’t forget those worrying moments.”