Lenesha Riley, 33, was reportedly flying from London’s Luton Airport to Berlin when she accidentally grabbed her toddler son Josiah’s passport instead of her own.
However, the passport mix-up did not prevent Riley from boarding her Easyjet flight. In fact, airport and airline employees, along with Riley, reportedly didn't even notice the mistake. It wasn’t until she was trying to enter Germany that the error was spotted by border agents at Berlin Airport, The Independent reported.
Eventually, German officials allowed her into the country when a relative texted her a picture of her legitimate passport. However, she then had to pay to fly out a family member with her actual passport in order to get back to London.
In the U.K., there is no legal requirement for airports to check passports before the security screening; rather, the airlines are responsible for checking passenger’s passports or identification at the gate. Passengers are still required to give valid passport information when booking a ticket, but the airport is only required to ensure a passenger has a valid boarding pass before the security check.
Riley told The Independent that the incident left her concerned about security, but a Luton Airport spokesperson explained to Fox News that there was no risk.
“At no point was security at the airport compromised, as all passengers and their luggage must undergo searches mandated by the Department for Transport. Airlines will typically check the passport of a passenger before boarding an aircraft. We’re working with easyJet to understand what happened on this occasion,” the statement read.
Easyjet confirmed the incident to Fox News, claiming they are currently investigating how it happened.
“We can confirm that the correct passport details had been submitted online in order to gain access to the boarding pass and Miss Riley went through full security screening ahead of the flight’s departure, however, the additional visual check carried out prior to boarding should have picked up the passport issue,” the statement read.
“As such we are investigating how she was able to travel from Luton to Berlin with the incorrect documentation.”
The airline said it offered Riley a “free of charge transfer to a later return flight” so she would have time to get the proper documents to fly into London.