Stupid mistake costs tourist $ 2.300

A COUPLE failed to play their cards right when they booked a dream trip to Las Vegas from the wrong Birmingham.

British pair Richella Heekin and Ben Marlow were devastated to be told their flights were departing from Birmingham, Alabama, instead of its West Midlands, UK namesake when they turned up at the airport ready for take off.

Unlucky Richella, from Sutton Coldfield in the UK s Birmingham, booked the trip through as a 30th birthday surprise for boyfriend Ben, The Sun reports.

But the stakes were high as the couple lost all $2300 they had paid towards the trip.

Ben said: When we turned up at the airport we couldn t find the flight details anywhere.

We approached one of the desks and they told us our Discount Holidays © holiday was booked from Alabama.

I was gutted more for my partner than for me.

She had told everyone and she was really upset.

She was distraught and we didn t know what to do.

Richella had kept it secret from Ben for more than a year before finally revealing the present at a bash in front of all their family and friends.

They flew off to Amsterdam instead after said no refund was available.

It s a common mistake apparently, said Ben.

But if that s the case the company s website should make it more clear.

It s embarrassing because everyone was really happy for us.

We are just going to have to start saving from scratch again. said the drop down menu on its website made a clear distinction between the two airports.

A spokeswoman said: While not an error on our behalf, we do feel very sorry that Richella and Ben only realised this choice of departure was incorrect once at the airport.

This is when they contacted our customer service team, who did their best to assist on the day of travel.

However there were no other flights available which could have been booked as an alternative.

The spokeswoman added: We take customer satisfaction very seriously and are committed to always finding the best possible solution.

We have since contacted the airline and the hotel to ask whether any refund would be available.

Unfortunately, as per the terms of conditions of the booking, this is not something that can be provided.

Such cases are extremely rare.

However we would like to take this opportunity to advise that customers check all details when making a booking, in particular departure and arrival airports (including airport codes) along with dates and times of travel.

It s not the first time the two Birminghams have caused confusion.

In 2008, Birmingham City Council admitted sending out thousands of leaflets bearing the US city s skyline.

Around 720,000 pamphlets praising residents for their recycling were sent out at a cost of $28,700.

And in 2014 the authority plugged a bridal fair in Birmingham, Alabama, on the events section of its website.

Are these the world’s ugliest statues? ‘Scary’ Lucille Ball, a naked man kicking a baby and a snake that looks like excrement are among the most…

  • Some statues around the world are so hideous or bizarre they have become tourist attractions in their own right
  • People were so taken aback by a bronze statue of I Love Lucy actress Lucille Ball they named it ‘Scary Lucy’
  • London’s Fulham Football Club was mocked by rivals after a statue of Michael Jackson was unveiled in 1999




They re meant to pay tribute to historical figures or delight visitors, but these statues are so hideous or bizarre they have become tourist attractions in their own right.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but the monuments are mocked for looking nothing like their namesake or being erected in the first place.

Such was the case in London when a 7.5-ft tall statue of pop star Michael Jackson was unveiled at Craven Cottage, the ground of Fulham Football Club, in 1999.

Fans hated the sculpture, commissioned by then-owner and Jackson s friend, Mohamed Al-Fayed, and the club was ridiculed until the statue was moved to the National Football Museum in Manchester in 2014.

A bronze statue of actress Lucille Ball, who catapulted to fame in the TV series I Love Lucy in the 1950s, was so hideous it was nicknamed ‘Scary Lucy’.

The 400lb monument was unveiled in Celoron, New York, where the actress and producer was raised, in 2009, but last year the village announced it will be moved to the National Comedy Center in nearby Jamestown, Ball s birthplace.

From a sculpture of a naked man kicking a baby to a snake that looks like a pile of excrement, these are some of the strangest statues in the world.

Lucille Ball, Celoron, New York

A statue of actress Lucille Ball, who catapulted to global fame in the TV series I Love Lucy in the 1950s, was nicknamed ‘Scary Lucy’

The 400lb bronze statue is based on a 1952 episode where Lucy stars in an advert for the fictitious health tonic Vitameatavegamin

Michael Jackson, National Football Museum, Manchester

This Michael Jackson statue was displayed at Craven Cottage until it was moved to the National Football Museum in Manchester

Man Attacked by Babies, Vigeland Park, Oslo

This statue of a naked man kicking a baby is one of more than 200 Gustav Vigeland sculptures on display at Oslo’s Vigeland Park

A Conversation with Oscar Wilde, London

A Conversation with Oscar Wilde shows the playwright and author smoking a cigarette as his head rises from a sarcophagus

Quetzalcoatl, San Jose, California

This statue of an ancient serpent-god worshipped by the Aztecs resembles a giant pile of excrement, according to locals in San Jose

Hercules and Cacus, Florence, Italy

Baccio Bandinelli’s statue of Hercules and Cacus, displayed outside the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, has been mocked for centuries

Ainslie’s Sheep, Canberra, Australia

Les Kossatz’s sculpture is a satirical salute to early pastoralist James Ainslie, who moved to Canberry in 1825 from Scotland

Peter the Great, Moscow, Russia

Taller than the Statue of Liberty, the 320ft statue of Peter the Great, who hated Moscow, has been despised since its unveiling in 1997

Konstanz, Germany

Erected at the entrance to Konstanz’s harbour, this rotating statue commemorates the Council of Constance, which was held from 1414 to 1418.

It features a busty prostitute who is holding naked caricatures of Pope Martin V (right) and Emperor Sigismund in her hands

Christopher Columbus, Seattle

A larger-than-life statue of Christopher Columbus, in Seattle’s Waterfront Park, was initially rejected by the city’s arts committee

Boll Weevil Monument, Enterprise, Alabama

Locals in Enterprise, Alabama, decided to pay tribute the boll weevil beetle in 1919 to show their appreciation for its impact on farming

Enjoy A Great Alabama Vacation Guide For The Upcoming Labor …

Enjoy A Great Alabama Vacation Guide For The Upcoming Labor ...

UPDATE: This post is written by Calhoun County Insight. Learn more at:

It s not often that a three-day weekend comes along without a whole lot of fibbing about illness and funerals, and we aim to help make sure that this Labor Day weekend you re able to make the most of the official time off with your friends, family and yourself. What better way to spend those precious 72 hours than touring your very own state? Alabama has a lot to offer for vacationers, and most spots worth visiting are close enough to make it there in only a few hours, meaning more time at the beach, in the mountains or enjoying the city. Take a look at our top five Alabama destinations and get out there!

Mt. Cheaha State Park

With gorgeous views, fine dining and several ways to stay on the mountain, Mt. Cheaha State Park is a versatile, beautiful option. Visitors can stay in the Cheaha Resort Hotel, rough it on the campgrounds or, our personal favorite, lodge in one of the park s mountainside cabins. It s a very romantic destination for couples or for when you just want to get away from it all for a while.

Gulf Shores http://www.gulfshores.com3

If you re looking for fun and sun, Gulf Shores and Orange Beach are the spot for activities and taking a dip in the ocean. Visitors can swim, fish, take a boat out for a spin, zip-line and even get in a game of golf, all without leaving Alabama. There s more than just partying and playing, though; check out the Alabama Civil War Trail for history about battles for the bay and visit Fort Morgan, where the Confederacy stood guard by the sea.

Montgomery http://www.visitingmontgomery.com4

Montgomery has some of everything, whether you re looking for sports, history, family activities or cultural touchstones like art and theatre. Take the kids to the Montgomery Zoo to feed giraffes by hand, ride paddleboats and meet lions up close, and then visit Tuskegee to learn about the famous airmen at the Tuskegee Airmen National Historic Site or head to the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts to see Southern art and international works that span centuries.

Fort Payne www.fortpayne.org5

Country music has a home base in Fort Payne, where the country supergroup Alabama got their start taking over the radio for more than three decades. Visit the Alabama Fan Club and Museum to see authentic artifacts from the band, and then check out Fort Payne s train depot museum to learn more about life on the rails in historic Bama. Top it off with a stroll through nature at the Little River Canyon Center s trails.

Birmingham www.birminghamal.org6

Birmingham has it all: parks, zoos, kids museums, and walking tours of city history. The McWane Science center lets kids see dinosaurs up close and find out how to do a weather newscast, or lay on a bed of nails (don t worry, it s safe!), while Splash Adventure Waterpark will keep the whole family cool. Stop by the Birmingham Museum of Art for incredible artwork from throughout history (including beautiful Renaissance works) or visit the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute to learn about the role Birmingham played in the civil rights movement. Not least of all, check out the Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame to get your groove back.

Be sure to be safe out there, and let us know how your trip goes this Labor Day!

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