A retired teacher travelled from Lanzarote, a Spanish island in the Atlantic Ocean, to Liverpool in the United Kingdom without a passport by showing a photocopied bus pass as an ID document.
John Williams was packing to return home from a family holiday when he found his passport had been stolen from the hotel room safe.
He reported the theft to police and then took his family to the airport, thinking he would have to fly home another time.
The 65-year-old told the Ryanair check-in desk what had happened and was initially advised to contact the British consulate for a temporary passport.
Williams asked if the airline would take alternative identification and was told it would be considered.
He then phoned his niece in England and arranged for her to e-mail a photocopy of his bus pass to the Ryanair desk.
He said: “I pointed out that the bottom of the bus pass says ‘given out by Her Majesty’s Service’. I was trying everything to get back.
“She phoned through to her supervisor and said that was OK.”
But the bus pass raised a few eyebrows at passport control in England.
“When I got back to Liverpool, they were furious and said ‘How did you get back on just this?’ They were laughing as well, though.
“It was not only a bus pass, but a photocopy. I wouldn’t even get on a bus with that,” he said.
Williams thinks the Ryanair staff made the right decision to allow him on the flight.
“I was just glad to get back. I know there’s rules people have to stick to, but I think rules in life are just guidelines.”
– The Telegraph