The woman found herself in a stressful situation when the airline staff deemed her bag too big to be carried on board and was told that she could only pay the oversized luggage fee using a card.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on October 26, 2020. It has since been updated.
An anonymous Ryanair passenger is being hailed a "hero" on social media after he stepped up to pay the "ridiculous" baggage charges for an overwhelmed mother at Ibiza Airport. A video filmed by a co-passenger shows the young man footing the £50 ($65) bill for the distressed woman who was attempting to board a flight to London Stansted Airport with her three children. The woman named Stephanie, who only wanted to use her first name, found herself in a stressful situation when the airline staff deemed her bag too big to be carried on board and was told that she could only pay the oversized luggage fee using a card.
In the video, posted online by Twitter user @CoolCalmPoch, the unidentified young man who paid the bill can be seen checking his phone near the boarding gate when the camera pans to reveal the stressed mother. One of her children is seen chasing after a younger sibling while the clearly overwhelmed mother puts her hands to her head and anxiously rakes them through her hair. Noticing her distress, the kind stranger turns around and attempts to reassure her. "It's alright, it's alright," he is heard telling her in the video.
Stephanie looks at him gratefully and buries her face in her hands again as he tries to soothe her. "Don't worry I'll pay for you," the man tells her as she starts to cry. The good Samaritan then turns to the desk and hands over his card for payment. The clip ends with him waiting for his payment to complete while the oldest of the woman's sons tries to calm his brother saying: "No no mama is upset" even as Stephanie tries to compose herself. Posting the video on Twitter, @CoolCalmPoch wrote: "Well done to this young hero for paying the ridiculous Ryanair baggage charges for a distressed mother traveling with 3 kids (who wasn't getting any leniency from ground staff). The flight from Ibiza to Stansted was half empty, not sure what difference a few cms would make."
Well done to this young hero for paying the ridiculous Ryanair baggage charges for a distressed mother travelling with 3 kids (who wasn’t getting any leniency from ground staff). The flight from Ibiza to Stansted was half empty, not sure what difference a few cm would make. pic.twitter.com/RosvQKh8tw— We are one (@CoolCalmPoch) October 17, 2020
Speaking to Daily Mail, Stephanie revealed that she was initially told by airport staff there was no need to check in the bag. However, the mother of three was later informed that it was too big and that she had to pay a charge. "The plane was half-full so I couldn't understand why they couldn't take my bag or put it in the hold," said Stephanie, who lives on the Spanish island, but had made a short trip back to see family in the UK earlier this month.
Great kid isn’t he... no idea who he is though, kept himself to himself and acted honourably & discretely without a fuss.— We are one (@CoolCalmPoch) October 20, 2020
"I was told I had to pay on card but I only had cash with me, so paying it was impossible. I don't travel a lot and it's been a long time since I've been on the plane, plus with everything that's going on, you can see on the video that I'm quite anxious," she said. "This kind man turned around and said he would pay for me - it was an amazing act of kindness that he really didn't need to do. He literally came out of nowhere, it was a crazy experience."
Lovely gesture from that guy. Also the staff are under horrendous pressure from their managers to maximise revenue and aren't allowed show leniency, so it's senior management who should be getting abuse, not the staff— David D (@DavidD_001) October 25, 2020
This 👆— We are one (@CoolCalmPoch) October 22, 2020
Now that’s kind heartedness from a caring young man. I hope Karma gives you the rewards you so deserve.— Gary AFC. (@Gary_AFC) October 23, 2020
"If it wasn't for him, I wouldn't have been able to take my kids away for the weekend. Once we got on the plane he was a few rows back from me and I wanted to go over and give him a hug, but because of Covid I couldn't," she added. Stephanie, who has twins aged nine and another one-year-old, said that she has since gotten in touch with the passenger who filmed the incident to try and track down the young man who paid her baggage fee, but to no avail thus far. "Apparently he wants to remain anonymous," she said. "I just want to have a chat with him because I don't think he realizes how nice a gesture it was and how much it meant to me."