Woman Wakes Up From Nap on Plane to Discover She Flew 1,200 Miles the Wrong Way

An unfortunate mistake led one woman flying from Manchester to Belfast on a 12-hour detour spanning thousands of miles.

According to BBC News, Gemma Cargin boarded the EasyJet flight on Sunday without any issues, at what she believed to be the correct gate. "The TV screen that told us the flight wasn't on at the gate, so I never had a notion I could be getting on to the wrong flight," recounted the 25-year-old teacher, who was flying from Manchester to Belfast.

The news outlet reported even when Cargin's boarding pass was scanned, no airline staff noticed she was boarding the wrong plane.

Cargin promptly fell asleep for a nap before the plane took off—and when she awoke mid-flight, she learned her plane wouldn't land for another hour and 15 minutes.

This raised an obvious red flag to Cargin, as the flight from Manchester to Belfast is merely 40 minutes. "They told me we were landing in an hour and 15 minutes—and I said: 'Is this flight not going to Belfast?'" she explained to BBC News.

That's when Cargin learned she was actually on a flight headed toward Gibraltar, a British territory along Spain's southern coast. "Guys, I'm on the wrong flight," Cargin remembered saying at the time, adding she was "shocked" and "worried" by the mishap. "I was wondering how I was going to get home, was I going to be left in Gibraltar?"

easyJet Planes in Paris
EasyJet planes lined up on the tarmac of Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris, 2018. JOEL SAGET/AFP/Getty Images

Cargin was also concerned about her parents, who were scheduled to pick her up from the airport in Belfast and soon grew worried when they couldn't find her. "There was a lot of confusion," said Cargin. "Mum was told I hadn't made it on to the Belfast flight and she said her stomach just flipped because I had texted from the plane to say I was on my way."

Before heading straight back to Manchester on the same plane, BBC News says Cargin got some fresh air on the plane's steps, and even managed to take a selfie with the Rock of Gibraltar looming in the background. "I'd never been before, so now I can tick it off the list," she said. "I have proof, the selfie was a souvenir."

By the time Cargin got to her final destination, her less-than-an-hour trip had turned into a 12-hour affair with a total detour of 2,396 miles.

In the aftermath of the incident, EasyJet is faced with questions over how such a severe error might have occurred. In a statement published in BBC News, EasyJet said: "We are investigating with the airport and our ground handling partner at Manchester how Ms. Cargin was able [to] travel on the wrong flight."

"As soon as the mistake was [realized], it was arranged for them to fly back to Manchester and on to Belfast, their original intended destination."

Newsweek attempted to contact EasyJet for further comment but had not received a response at the time of publication.

Meanwhile, it appears Cargin learned a valuable lesson. As she told BBC News: "I'm just going to definitely check that I'm on the right flight and not fall asleep before the plane takes off."