An off-duty EasyJet captain going on vacation to Spain flew the plane himself when the original pilot failed to show up

easyjet pilot
  • An off-duty pilot heading on vacation with his family on Monday ended up flying the plane himself, after a missing pilot delayed departure by two hours.
  • Michael Bradley flew the EasyJet flight from Manchester, UK, to Alicante, Spain, after he brought his pilots ID to the airport when he heard the pilot originally set to fly the plane was late.
  • Videos posted to Facebook show Bradley telling passengers EasyJet had just cleared him to pilot the flight, and being met with wild applause.
  • EasyJet confirmed the news to Business Insider, and said: "This is fully in line with regulations as he had his licence and ID with him. Safety is always our highest priority."
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. 

An off-duty pilot taking his family on vacation ended up flying the plane they were travelling on Monday, after it was delayed by a missing pilot.

Videos posted to Facebook by passenger Michelle Potts show pilot Michael Bradley telling passengers on an EasyJet flight from Manchester, UK, to Alicante, Spain, that he brought his pilots ID to the airport after hearing of the delay.Advertisement

The video then shows Bradley, who works for the airline, telling passengers that he has just been given permission to fly the plane, which is met with wild applause.


"I phoned up EasyJet and said 'Hi, I'm standing in the terminal doing nothing.' I have got my licence with me," he told the passengers. "'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.'"

Read more: A flight from the UK to Portugal was forced to make an emergency landing after the pilot reportedly fainted

"They said: 'We'll phone you back.' 38 seconds later they phoned me back and said: 'Please, please pretty please with a big cherry on top, can you fly the airplane to Alicante?'."An EasyJet spokeswoman confirmed the events to Business Insider, saying that Bradley flying the plane was "fully in line with regulations as he had his flying licence and pilot's ID with him."Advertisement


Bradley joked with passengers over the intercom about his casual attire, saying: "So if you're alright for one of your pilots to look like this today, we'll go to Alicante." 

The pilot scheduled to fly the plane was stuck on home standby in Liverpool, Bradley said, caused by the knock on effects of a French air traffic control failure on Sunday.Advertisement

An EasyJet spokeswoman told Business Insider: "We are grateful to one of our pilots who was travelling on holiday from Manchester to Alicante on September 2 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."