Couple abandons baby without ticket at Ben Gurion Airport check-in desk

Parents rushing to board flight from Tel Aviv to Brussels leave child at check-in counter despite having baby sit on adult's lap only carries minor add-on fee; police say matter resolved

Gilad Meiri|
A couple abandoned their baby at a check-in desk at Ben Gurion Airport trying to catch a Ryanair flight from Tel Aviv to Brussels upon realizing they haven't purchased a ticket for the infant, the Israel Airports Authority said Tuesday.
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  • A Ryanair spokeswoman told CNN in an email that the matter has been referred to local police.
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    Ben Gurion Airport's departure terminal
    (Photo: Shiri Hadar)
    "These passengers traveling from Tel Aviv to Brussels (31 Jan) presented at check-in without a booking for their infant. They then proceeded to security leaving the infant behind at check-in," the email read.
    "The check-in agent at Ben Gurion Airport contacted Airport Security, who retrieved these passengers, and this is now a matter for local police."
    According to Ryanair's website, infants can be included in a flight reservation during the online booking process. An infant sitting on an adult's lap carries a $27 charge per each one-way flight. Given the clear and permissive procedures, coupled with the affordable fee, it remains a mystery as to why the couple felt the need to ditch the child in the first place.
    Israeli Airport Authority relayed the following statement: "A couple and an infant with Belgian passports arrived for a flight at Terminal 1 without a ticket for the baby. The couple also arrived late for the flight, once the check-in for the flight was closed. The couple left the infant seat with the baby and ran toward the security checks at Terminal 1 in an attempt to reach the boarding gate for the flight."
    An Israel Police spokesperson said that the couple has been located with their baby and the issue appeared to have been resolved, with no further police involvement required.
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    Long lines at Ben Gurion Airport departure hall
    Long lines at Ben Gurion Airport departure hall
    Ryanair procedures say babies can sit on adult's lap for only $27
    (Photo: Courtesy)
    This is not the first time babies are unaccounted for in airports, as in 2020 a mentally disturbed woman arrived at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport with a baby who did not belong to her.
    Police were suspicious given the woman's erratic behavior and upon examination, managed to reunite the baby with its biological mother with no further explanations given as to how the situation came to be.
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