• Tue. Jan 11th, 2022

Quebec influencers’ maskless in-flight party goes viral, airline cancels return tickets

ByLinda W. Smith

Jan 6, 2022

Amid rising cases of coronavirus infection around the world, a video of influencers throwing a party at a Canadian airline has gone viral, drawing criticism from all sides, including from the Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Videos posted inside the plane – en route to Mexico for the New Year’s holidays – on social media by reality TV stars and influencers show them partying and drinking alcohol, vaping in the aisle.

According to Journal of Montreal, people involved in the reality shows Double Occupation and Love Island and was chartered by James William Awad.

Watch the videos here:

As the video went viral, Transport Minister Omar Alghabra as well as health and public safety ministers said in a statement on Tuesday that officials in their departments would immediately open an investigation into the incident.

Citing “unacceptable behavior and instances of non-compliance with mask wearing and other aviation safety requirements”, they reiterated that the “health and safety” of flight crews and passengers was a “priority absolute “.

Prime Minister Trudeau also criticized the group for its cheeky celebration, saying it was a “slap in the face” to Canadians who have followed the rules since the start of the pandemic. Trudeau said on Wednesday he was “extremely frustrated” watching the now deleted social media videos of Quebec influencers.

“We know how hard people have worked to keep themselves safe, to limit their family gatherings to Christmas, to wear masks, to get vaccinated, to do whatever it takes. It’s a slap in the face to see people put themselves down, put their fellow citizens, endanger airline workers by being completely irresponsible, ”Trudeau told reporters.

After the incident, flight attendants also called for stronger government and carrier action to ensure onboard health and safety amid the Omicron wave, Global News reported.

Sunwing Airlines canceled the influencer group’s return flight scheduled for Jan. 5 after they “did not agree to the airline’s terms and conditions.” Since then, other airlines such as Air Canada and Air Transat have also denied them a return flight.

As airlines refused to bring them back to Canada, the public supported the move and criticized the group for its negligence.

However, after much hassle, a dozen passengers made it to Montreal from Mexico. According to Montreal CTV News, “At least one of the passengers on an Air Canada flight on Wednesday evening was handcuffed by border officers shortly after arriving at Montreal-Trudeau airport”, while others refused to answer journalists’ questions .

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