Willem-Alexander co-piloted commercial KLM flights twice a month, saying it had been a ‘relaxing’ hobby
King Willem-Alexander said he has ended his role as a regular ‘guest pilot’ after 21 years on KLM’s fleet of Fokker 70 planes while he previously also flew jets for Dutch carrier Martinair. He will now retrain to fly Boeing 737s as the Fokkers are being phased out of service.
Willem-Alexander is a qualified pilot and it was previously known he had sometimes flown KLM passenger flights, but it was not clear how frequently it happened.
De Telegraaf reported that he does it twice a month and as a guest flier, the king is always the co-pilot.
“You have an aircraft, passengers and crew. You have responsibility for them,” the king told De Telegraaf. “You can’t take your problems from the ground into the skies. You can completely disengage and concentrate on something else. That, for me, is the most relaxing part of flying.