Belgian couple ditch baby at Tel Aviv airport after refusing to buy extra ticket

A Belgian couple at Israel’s Tel Aviv airport abandoned their baby after realising they needed to buy a ticket for the child. The couple was late for a flight to Belgium and decided their child wasn’t worth the extra cost. They left their child at the check-in counter’s baggage conveyor belt and hurried to clear security to board their Ryanair flight to Brussels.

According to the Straits Times, the staff at the Ben Gurion Airport informed the couple at the closed check-in counter that they had to buy an extra seat for their baby. Smartphone footage that is now circulating online, shows the airline staff uncovering a blanket to find a baby inside a carrier.

The staff reportedly said in Hebrew that the baby was left there. Officials say it was unclear if the couple could not afford to pay for the baby’s ticket or were just unwilling to pay.

Ryanair staff reportedly told the couple to return for their baby, with airport security and Israeli police ultimately detaining them. A Ryanair manager told Israeli news outlet Channel 12 the staff was very surprised.

“All our staff were in shock. We’ve never encountered anything like this. We couldn’t believe what we were seeing.”

Ryanairs’ website states that babies can travel with their parents for an extra charge of €25 (900 baht) for “each one-way flight the baby takes while sitting in an adult’s lap.”

Parents of babies can also choose to buy a separate seat. Police say the matter was resolved by the time they arrived at the airport as the baby was back with its parents. They furthered that there was no investigation after finding the baby with its parents upon arriving.

Needless to say, they missed their flight to Brussels. It is not clear why the parents decided to ditch their child in favour of saving money for a flight.

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Ann Carter

Ann Carter is an award-winning journalist from the United States with over 12 years experience in print and broadcast news. Her work has been featured in America, China and Thailand as she has worked internationally at major news stations as a writer and producer. Carter graduated from the Walter Williams Missouri School of Journalism in the USA.

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