DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - Almost 300 passengers were stuck inside Daytona Beach International Airport's terminal Sunday, after an emergency landing Saturday.
The first day of a dream vacation turned into a nightmare.
Air Berlin confirmed 271 passengers were stranded at Daytona International Airport for 24 hours before departure.
"Everyone is frustrated because we don't know what's happening." Sanga Elecrosseur of Switzerland said.
Air Berlin flight 7416 was traveling from Dusseldorf, Germany, to Cancun, Mexico when it made an emergency landing Saturday, after smoke was reported in the cockpit.
"It was just spooky. It lasted for some seconds, and then it went away.” Gina Steiner of Germany said. “Then, we heard rumbling under the floor."
Senja Elovaara said once her family landed, they weren’t all off the plane right away due to a visa issue
"Nobody had done a visa to come to the US. So, we had to file all the forms and ask for exceptions to get a visa," Elovaara said.
Once inside the terminal, passengers say things didn't get much better.
The Red Cross stepped in to provide blankets, food, water and hygiene products.
Dozens of passengers say they spent the night in a large meeting room sleeping on the floor, finding space wherever they could to rest their heads.
The airline told passengers like Elecrosseur hotels were booked solid because of the Daytona 500.
"There are families with small babies,” Elecrosseur said. “They should be at hotels. Not the crew. The cabin crew should be with the people."
Passengers say little information seemed to trickle down, only fueling frustrations.
FOX 35 was there as Air Berlin apologized to passengers Sunday, saying each person will get €600 as compensation - that's about $633.
After 24 hours of waiting, passengers were able to board another plane bound for Cancun.
But had to wait another day to get their bags because the airline said the airport isn't equipped to offload luggage from this type aircraft.