Planes are finally taking off from European countries again. That’s after an ash cloud from a volcano in Iceland grounded air travel for days. Tens of thousands of Americans are stuck overseas, including some Iowans.
Iowa City’s Winebrenner Red Carpet Travel Agency received a call from a concerned client last week. University of Iowa Mechanical Engineer Professor Fred Stern was stuck in Turkey and couldn’t find a flight back to America. Travel Counselor Tricia Wasion spent hours searching for a solution.
“We’ve gone through airline strikes and such, but not anything like a volcano,” Tricia Wasion said. “It was very challenging. In my situation, I had to contact three different airlines,” Wasion said. She was finally able to find Stern a flight to Chicago. He returned to Iowa Sunday. Stern travels all over the world to complete his work and frequently encounters delays and cancellations.
“If you travel a lot, you are used to all kinds of situations that can confront you,” Stern said. “That’s why I only take carry-on luggage. I’m very flexible in my travel.” Stern left at a good time. His friends and colleagues remain stuck overseas.
By Mark Geary, KCRG-TV, Cedar Rapids