7 Hilarious Reasons Flights Have Been Delayed Around The Globe
From reproducing turtles to the Hairgate incident, these hilarious mishaps caused some serious flight delays and disruptions around the globe...
1 | Turtles
Would you complain if a little turtle caused your flight delay? At JFK, Diamondback Terrapin Turtles make their way from Jamaica Bay onto the JFK runway to lay their eggs in the surrounding sand. When they’re on the tarmac the planes simply have to wait, as the turtles have priority!
2 | Coffee Machine Problems
According to the New York Times, coffee machines are often culprits behind annoying flight delays. It might sound trivial, but it’s far from just being a caffeine-deprived problem.
The coffee makers on planes are electrical, and if they malfunction they can cause issues both electrical and fire issues – which means they need to be fixed before the plane can even take off.
3 | Snakes On A Plane
Literally! In 2013, on a flight set to leave Sydney for Tokyo, a small snake was discovered in the passenger cabin before the plane took off. After a quick panic, the passengers were evacuated and the snake eventually removed.
Travellers were forced to stay in Sydney overnight during the debacle and weren’t flown out again until the next day (though thankfully, on a totally different plane!).
4 | No. 2
Diverted and delayed, all because of going No. 2! A domestic Delta plane was forced to make an emergency landing in Salt Lake City when it became apparent (via the horrid smell) that its loo was not working properly.
It only took an hour to repair, but perhaps the most exciting part of the ordeal was the presence of famous guitarist Slash, who was on the plane and tweeted about it to his followers on Twitter.
5 | A Loose Whippet
You wouldn’t think that a lone dog could shut down an entire runway and delay several flights, but it did! At Manchester Airport in 2011, a local whippet on its daily walk escaped its owner and made its way onto the runway.
Security ceased operations immediately and it took them almost an hour to find the pooch, and even longer to resume the flight schedule!
6 | Incorrect Nuts
When you’re the Vice President of an airline, it’s understandable that you’re a stickler for policy.
But on a Korean Air flight in 2014, the airline’s VP, in first class, caused a loud fuss when her macadamia nuts were served by a flight attendant in a package rather than on a plate. She demanded that the plane be turned around to kick the attendant off. Since she was the VP, they obliged.
(Don’t worry – justice was served in the end. The VP was fired and arrested for illegally disrupting the flight route.)
7 | Presidential Haircuts
Back in 1993, Bill Clinton supposedly delayed Air Force One – and a bundle of other flights – because he was busy getting an on-plane haircut from his hair stylist. Was this truth or fiction?
A bit of both, actually. He was getting a haircut at the time, but the stationary aircraft didn’t cause the delays of any other flights. Still, the story took off in the press, and the incident became known as ‘Hairgate.
What should you do if your flight is delayed?
Talk to your airline. If the delay is significant, enquire what is being done to get you to your destination.
Don’t forget to ask about compensation too. If your plane is seriously behind schedule, what can the airline reimburse you for?
- Check with your travel insurance provider about whether you have travel insurance for delayed flights and about what claims you can make. You might be able to get some money back for things like toiletries or accommodation.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sabrina Iovino is the founder of JustOneWayTicket.com. She's half German, half Italian and has traveled to more than 50 countries around the globe. She feels weird to write about herself in the third person, so she'll switch now. Phew...much better! Let's restart:
Hi, I'm Sab! This is my blog and I write about the things I love. Mostly.
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