A single mother from Scotland, Marie-Clare Kelly, was forced to skip the Disneyland Paris vacation she had planned for her and her son after the Passport Office failed to deliver her renewed passport in time. But, instead of letting the tickets and reservation go to waste, she appears to have found a way to give the magic away to another family who would have never been able to afford such a trip on their own.
According to STV News, “Marie-Clare took to social media to search for a family who could do with time away and found another mother and her three-year-old to take the Monday to Thursday holiday.”
“I couldn’t bear to think about the empty Disney places and an empty hotel room going to waste,” she said. “The holiday cost me £800. It may not seem much to some people, but it is a lot for us.”
“I wanted to give the holiday to a person who couldn’t afford it and needed a break,” she added. “I found a mum, transferred it over, and she was off to Disney. It was quite nice to make a positive thing happen out of a bad situation. I am a believer in what goes around comes around.”
Kelly reportedly applied for her new passport five weeks in advance of her trip and tried to get the renewal expedited. However, the passport office reports telling UK citizens that due to “record demand,” all travelers should apply for new passports 10 weeks out.
A spokesperson from HM Passport Office said:
“Staff are processing approximately 250,000 passport applications each week and between March and May 98.5% of applications were completed within 10 weeks. But we cannot compromise security checks and people should apply with plenty of time prior to travelling.
“Since April 2021, we’ve clearly stated that people should allow up to 10 weeks when applying for their passport to factor in the increased demand, which has seen five million people delay their passport application due to the pandemic. Face-to-face passport services are only available by appointment.”
Kelly said she had kept this trip a surprise for her eight-year-old son Chael and credited his lack of time spent invested in anticipation for saving him from greater disappointment.
Kelly is still waiting on her passport, and people in her hometown of Baillieston have been hard at work raising the money needed to make her mother-son dream trip to Disneyland come true.
We at Disney Fanatic will continue to share Disney Parks news and stories with our readers as more come to light. We would also like to remind all would-be Disney Park Guests to ensure that all of your necessary travel documentation is in order before embarking on your magical vacation.