Passengers on the ground at Dublin airport

TELEVISION executives, primary school teachers, international airline couriers and even off-duty airhostesses – you name it and they are stranded.

There were long queues in Dublin Airport yesterday but not of the typical variety. In place of the infamous security lines, the usually quiet ticket desks were thronged.

The winding lanes approaching check-in were all but empty. Scattered around indiscriminately, children played, people slept and time continued to pass. Nobody was going anywhere.

"I have to get out of here or I will be washing my clothes in the Liffey," said 38-year-old Los Angeles native Dan Kelly who has been in the capital since St Patrick's Day.

Between missed flights, mis-information and volcanic dust clouds, his Irish jaunt has a while to go yet.

"It's been a bit maddening but I love Dublin and another night of traditional music and pints doesn't sound bad."

It's a positive attitude that seemed strangely infectious in the departures lounge; there were, after all, no airlines to blame.

Alex Reux, a primary school teacher believes his young students will be gifted a week off now that Ryanair can only get him back on Friday.

"I was supposed to leave tomorrow [Sunday] and now I am leaving on Friday with Ryanair. I was thinking of a coach and ferry crossing through England but it looks very hard," he said.

Tiphaine Rossignol, a French student living in Dublin, has had an extended visit from her Lyon-based friends Deborah Greffe and Vanessa Mouloud.

"Deborah's boss doesn't know that she is trapped in Ireland," said Tiphaine.

"If she goes back on Monday or Tuesday it will be ok but on Friday, she thinks she will be fired. It doesn't matter, there is nothing we can do. It's not a terrorist attack."

Kerri Taylor travelled from Tennessee with her husband Michael, a FedEx employee, and baby daughter Reagan, to visit her parents Martin and Debra Maguire from Enniskillen.

"We were supposed to fly out today [Saturday] but it got cancelled and we can't get out till Tuesday," she said.

"But I'm a flight attendant so I will just roll with the punches. I can't complain. To me, I'm happy to be home, there's no rush."

For those desperate to get out, there are those desperate to get back. Some of Ireland's top TV executives are stuck in Cannes after the world's largest television market, the MIP TV Conference.

Producer Larry Bass, well-known for The Apprentice, production companies Shinawil, Tyrone, Mind the Gap productions and Vision Independent Productions (VIP) are just some of those who now find themselves stuck.

A spokeswoman for RTE said: "Unfortunately now the Irish TV executives have found themselves in a bit of trouble because all flights home have been cancelled."