How a £46k Caribbean booked with Tui turned sour

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Andy and Heidi went to Jamaica for their dream wedding but came back devastated

Andy and Heidi went to Jamaica for their dream but came back devastated

A couple who spent £46,000 on an idyllic Caribbean were left devastated after a string of errors saw them return to Britain unsure if they were legally married.

Andy Helsdon, 45, and his partner Heidi Brown, 49, booked the five-star Riu Montego Bay hotel in Jamaica for themselves and 22 guests with Tui, who described it as a luxury, family resort.

But the couple say the 'rowdy' resort was better suited to 18-to-30-year-olds, featuring foam parties in the pool and women 'twerking on the bar', with entertainment so 'overly sexualised' the younger guests had to stay in their rooms. 

On the day of the ceremony, the service itself 'felt rushed' and the had to be stopped twice due to planes flying overhead, meaning nobody could hear the minister, Ms Brown said. 

The following day the supposedly newlyweds noticed an error on the register due to the minister writing witness names in the wrong place, casting doubt over whether they were really legally married at all.   

Mr Helsdon and Ms Brown, from Lower Darwen, Blackburn, had booked the resort - sold as part of holiday giant's platinum collection - as it included a package.

On Tui's website, the resort is even described as being 'perfect for your day.' 

But Mr Helsden said that while 'it was sold to us as paradise... in actual fact it was a nightmare'. 

Mr Helsdon and Ms Brown, from Lower Darwen, Blackburn, had booked the resort - sold as part of holiday giant's platinum collection - as it included a wedding package

Mr Helsdon and Ms Brown, from Lower Darwen, Blackburn, had booked the resort - sold as part of holiday giant's platinum collection - as it included a package

On the day of the ceremony, the service itself 'felt rushed' and the wedding had to be stopped twice due to planes flying overhead, meaning nobody could hear the minister, Ms Brown said.

On the day of the ceremony, the service itself 'felt rushed' and the had to be stopped twice due to planes flying overhead, meaning nobody could hear the minister, Ms Brown said 

The party spent a total of £46,000 on the trip, including flights and accommodation, with the couple spending £5,000 themselves, inclusive of the package.

However, when they arrived at the Riu Montego Bay hotel with their guests on 3 April, they were shocked at the 'rowdy' hotel that was said to be nowhere near as luxurious as described. 

Mr Helsdon said: 'The place resembled a rowdy 18 to 30s resort with foam parties in the pool and women twerking on the bar. 

'Most evenings the children had to stay in their rooms with an accompanying adult because the entertainment was overly sexualised and not suitable for families.'

He claimed the furniture was old and tatty and resembled a three-star hotel more than it did a five-star. 

Further problems were to come on the couple's day as the planner disappeared and the replacement didn't turn up.

A complaint was written up and sent to the Tui head office but they still didn't hear anything during the 28 day period they were told it would take to investigate the matter (pictured: Riu Montego Bay)

A complaint was written up and sent to the Tui head office but they still didn't hear anything during the 28 day period they were told it would take to investigate the matter (pictured: Riu Montego Bay)

The planner was due to signal Ms Brown to let her know when all the guests had arrived but as she was nowhere to be seen, Mr Helsdon was left waiting at the altar while Ms Brown was still waiting in her room.

The wait was made even worse as the couple had recently been informed that for each 15 minutes the ceremony overran, a $50 fine would be given.

When Ms Brown was eventually ready to walk down the aisle, the ceremony was still delayed as the minister was late arriving.

Ms Brown said: 'The service itself felt rushed and we had to stop the twice due to planes flying overhead which meant no one could hear the minister. We couldn't even hear

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