KLM Pax Get Unexpected Aerial Tour Of India

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A mix-up over where to land led to a KLM crew extending its downwind leg a bit -- by about 1,500 miles. It seems the crew, which had launched from Amsterdam, was expecting to land at its usual destination near the city of Hyderabad, in the south of India, but that airport had been closed just hours before. A brand-new airport had opened nearby, but when controllers directed the crew to land there, they declined, saying they hadn't heard about any new airport and weren't authorized by their airline to go there. They flew on to Delhi, but were not allowed to land, so flew on to Mumbai (Bombay) where they finally set down, with their 233 passengers.

The new airport had delayed its opening by a week. Officials said all airlines had been notified.