Oct. 26 (UPI) -- A Scottish novelist who paid just $60 for a flight to Greece said her vacation started with a big surprise -- she was the only passenger on the 189-seat plane.
Karon Grieve of Dunlop, Ayrshire, said she boarded her Jet2 flight from Glasgow to the Greek island of Crete and was surprised to discover she was the only passenger on the flight.
"I turned up at the check-in desk and was joking with the staff, saying 'how many people are on this flight?'" Grieve told the BBC. "The guy was laughing at me and he said 'oh come on, guess.'"
"We got it down from 10 to four and he said 'you'll never guess it, there's only three of you,'" she said. "But when I got to the actual gate, the other two people hadn't turned up."
Grieve, who is planning to spend about a month in Crete writing a crime novel, said the unusual circumstance led her to bond with the flight's crew.
"We were all on best friend terms before we'd even got on the plane," she said. "The captain was fantastic. She came and sat beside me while the first officer did all the flight checks and we were chatting away about the flight."
She said the crew treated their sole passenger like a VIP.
"Every time she made an announcement she said, 'Hi there Karon, you'll see Croatia on your left-hand side,' and then we flew through this amazing lightning storm and she suddenly came on and said, 'Hi Karon and the girls, quickly run to the other side of the plane and look at this, it's amazing.'"
"It was just surreal," she said of the experience.
Aviation experts said it is not uncommon for outbound planes to fly with lower-than-usual numbers of passengers this time of year, as airlines are switching away from their summer schedules.
"This was our last flight to Crete from Glasgow Airport this year, marking the end of a very busy and successful season," a Jet2 spokeswoman said. "We're delighted that Karon got to experience our VIP customer service in style onboard our award-winning airline."
"It is not unusual for the final outbound flight of the season to have fewer bookings than normal, and the return flight back to Glasgow was completely full with customers returning from a lovely holiday. We hope Karon has a fantastic time in Crete and that we got her trip off to a great start," the spokeswoman said.