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Flight delays can be a real pain in the neck. Some of the worst, however, are the ones that come at the end of an interminable flight, when the control tower orders the aircraft to circle due to congestion or other issues on the ground.
Passengers on a recent Swiss International Air Lines flight from Barcelona to Zurich, Switzerland were faced with just such a delay.
Fortunately, a savvy pilot with knowledge of the area turned what could have been just another annoying air experience into an impromptu flight-seeing tour of the Swiss Alps.
"Let me show you the best of Switzerland," he told passengers over the aircraft PA, according to a Facebook post by passenger Lars Jensen.
Travelers did not need to activate their GPS apps as the pilot pointed out such landmark peaks as Matterhorn, Zermatt, Aletsch Gletcher, Eiger and Jungfrau.
"Thank you, Swiss International Air Lines for the absolutely extraordinary flight this morning on LX1953 from Barcelona," enthused Jensen in his Facebook post. "Circling the alps to, as the captain said "Let me show you the best of Switzerland" and see Matterhorn, Zermatt, Aletsch, Gletcher, Eiger and Jungfrau was absolutely spectacular
I will fly with you again next time :) #flyswiss."
For travelers worried about the potential safety issues behind an unplanned circle of the region, the entire flight was legit, according to a spokesperson for Swiss International Air Lines.
[READMORE]READ MORE: Swiss Town Bans Travel Photography[/READMORE]
"Pilots are permitted to fly different holding patterns [for example over the Alps instead of over the central plateau] if authorized by air traffic control," said the spokesperson in a statement to swissinfo.ch.
"Safety is always our first priority. However, holding patterns over the Alps do not differ from holding patterns elsewhere in terms of safety or concerning arrival time."
Monica Poling, the evening and weekend editor at TravelPulse.com, has been writing about travel for more than 20 years....
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