A holidaymaker was horrified when she returned to pick up her Mini from the airport car parking firm to find it was a “write off”.
Stephanie Bland, 31, left her perfectly-working car with the official Stansted Airport meet and greet service during a week in Portugal with boyfriend Rich Robinson, 33.
The teacher was horrified when it was returned to her on the back of an AA recovery truck with a seized engine, she claims.
Steph says the car was a total write-off and she claims mechanics said it needed a totally new engine.
Furious Stephanie claims garage workers said the conrod had been ruined causing all the oil to leak out “and that only happens by driving completely irresponsibly”.
She was forced to buy a new Mini and is in dialogue with her insurance company.
But Stansted Airport meet and greet are yet to reply to her complaint – and are claiming it was “wear and tear”.
Stephanie from Acton, London, said: “When you take your cars to these places you don’t expect to pick it up and see it arrive on the back of an AA lorry.
“We left it there for convenience and it was the total opposite.
“It was a very, very bad end to a lovely holiday.
“They tried to blame me and say it was wear and tear but the garage has told me that it’s absolutely not the case.
“It has broken as a result of driving very irresponsibility – by their drivers.
“I’ve sent them a long letter complaining and asking for their insurance details but I have had no reply.
“They’ve written off my car and I’ve not had a sorry or even a courtesy call to check on us.”
Stephanie paid £89 to leave her car, expecting to be greeted with it when she arrived back at the airport on July 27.
But when she arrived she claims she was told there was a half an hour wait, which passed before she was told the keys “might have been misplaced”.
After two hours she was asked to step outside the reception and staff told her the engine was seized and oil was leaking.
Baffled Stephanie claims staff said it was “wear and tear” and watched in horror as her car was unloaded on to the road in front of her from an AA truck.
She had to pay a garage £150 to collect it the next day, and claims staff said the car was broken due to “careless driving”.
She added: “They said it was absolutely nothing to do with wear and tear and the only way that would happen is if someone was riding the heck out of it.
“They said you’d have to be driving like a lunatic. It was down to the careless driving of the meet and greet staff.”
A Stansted spokesperson said: “The car mentioned is 15 years old and was driven less than four miles under our care to its secure location. We also understand the vehicle is thousands of miles past its service date.
“We’ve had the vehicle independently inspected which revealed the problems were likely caused by general wear and tear.
“We are continuing to investigate and have been in contact with the owner.”