Dad jetting off on holiday flies plane himself in place of missing captain

A dad, setting off on holiday with his wife and young son, stepped up to fly the plane himself after it was delayed because the airline was missing a captain.

Michelle Potts, from Denton, recorded the moment she arrived at her flight to be told a fellow passenger would be taking them to Alicante.

The pilot told them: “My wife who’s on row 15 with my little boy – hopefully he’s asleep by now, I should keep it down or else I’ll get told off – she rolled over and punched me in the back of the head and said ‘our flight’s delayed by two hours because they are minus one captain for the flight’….

It could only happen to me!! Get to the airport and our flight is delayed a couple of hours… then I happen to look at…

Posted by Michelle Hannah Potts on Monday, September 2, 2019

“So just before we went through security I thought I wonder if this is worth a phone call, I think it is because I’d like to go on holiday.

“I phoned up easyJet and said ‘Hiya, I’m standing in the terminal doing nothing. I have got my licence with me. I have got my ID with me and I’d very much like to go on holiday and if you need a favour I’m standing here ready to go”.”

He said EasyJet phoned him back “38 seconds later” and asked him to fly the plane, positioning a different pilot to bring it back.

The pilot told the packed cabin: “So if you’re alright for one of your pilots to look like this today, we’ll go to Alicante.”

Michelle Potts, who captured the moment, called him a “legend”: “We are lucky he was on the flight. I was very glad when we touched down in Alicante.”

An EasyJet spokesperson said: “We are grateful to one of our pilots who was travelling on holiday from Manchester to Alicante on 2nd September with his family and volunteered to operate the flight. This meant customers could get to their destination and shows the commitment and dedication of our crew.

“This is fully in line with regulations as he had his licence and ID with him. Safety is always our highest priority.”

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