King Willem-Alexander, also known as, King of the Netherlands has been flying under the radar for the past 21 years! He recently revealed that he’s been living a secret life – as a KLM Airlines co-pilot.
According to De Telegraaf, the King said, “I find flying simply fantastic. You can’t take your problems with you off the ground. You can completely switch off for a while and focus on something else. That, for me, is the most relaxing part of flying.”
Dutch King Willem-Alexander, right, sits next to pilot Maarten Putman inside the cockpit of a KLM Cityhopper. (European Pressphoto Agency)
The king got his military pilot’s license as a member of the Royal Netherlands Air Force. However, no one knew how frequently he went incognito in the cockpit of a regular commercial flight.
Though very few recognized the King, he usually had no troubles going around the airport in his pilot uniform unnoticed. It’s also the same when he gives announcements during flights.
“Most people don’t listen anyway,” he said.
Dutch King Willem-Alexander posing in front of a KLM Cityhopper aircraft at Schiphol Airport, near Amsterdam. (Natasacha Libbert/KLM/AFP/Getty Images)
But what finally made Willem-Alexander reveal his secret life? Well, the King is now in training to fly the Boeing 737s – the model of the plane that is replacing Fokker 70 planes used by the airline company.
Last month the Dutch government revealed the king had flown for both the government and KLM Cityhopper service; Cityhopper flights generally transport business travelers, largely in the UK, Germany and Norway.
While it has been awhile since the king has been taking orders, he is excited to fly the new planes.
“It also seemed nice to fly to other destinations one day, with more passengers and bigger distances. That was the real motive for training on the 737,” said Willem-Alexander.
Fancy being flown in a plane by the King!