Dutch king reveals double life as an airline pilot for KLM

Pauline Gross
May 20, 2017

He told the newspaper now he has been training to fly Boeing 737s for KLM itself, which are also known as Dutch Royal Airlines. The Dutch-made aircraft is being retired from service to be replaced by the Boeing 737.

The king would often greet passengers over the intercom, but not readily identify himself. "But yes, some people recognize my voice during the flight".

"So I don't have to say my name".

Willem-Alexander volunteered to fly for the African Medical Research and Education Foundation and the Kenya Wildlife Service in the 1990s. The Dutch citizens were quite used to seeing King Willem-Alexander's grandmother Queen Juliana riding the streets on her bicycle, and Queen Juliana was particularly interested in the problems of developing countries, the refugee problem, and had a very special interest in child welfare, particularly in the developing countries, and on the night of 31 January 1953, the Netherlands was hit by the most destructive storm in more than five hundred years.

The 50-year-old father of three talked about his flying duties in an interview to celebrate his wife Queen Maxima's birthday, describing how his "hobby", as he put it, allowed him the freedom to leave his earthbound royal duties and turn his attention to something else.

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"The advantage is that I can always say that I warmly welcome passengers on behalf of the captain and crew", he said.

As the Dutch learned this week, the announcements concealed a royal secret - they were made by King Willem-Alexander, who for two decades had carried unsuspecting passengers around European skies. For the King flying is a hobby, in which he sees the opportunity to "disengage and concentrate on something else". KLM is replacing the narrow bodied twin engined jets in favour of Boeing 737s. As of a year ago there were 45 in service with eight airlines and two governments - the Netherlands and Kenya.

According to the Royal House of the Netherlands website, King Willem-Alexander succeeded his mother as monarch on April 30, 2013.

The Dutch royal family are sometimes described as the bicycling monarchs due to their relaxed style, which they share with the Scandinavian monarchies.

Other reports by GizPress

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