A family had a lucky escape after they switched flights from the doomed airliner because it was full.

Barry Sim, thought to be from Methlick in Aberdeenshire, tried to board the Malaysia Airlines flight from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur but could only get one seat, the BBC reported.

Instead, he and his wife Izzy booked on to a KLM flight with their baby son.

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After hearing of the crash, Mr Sim told the BBC: "You get this sick feeling in the pit of your stomach. We started getting butterflies. Your heartbeat starts going."

Mr Sim said he was "philosophical" about continuing to "go about your life", saying he believed the couple should take the KLM flight, despite his wife's misgivings about the danger of another crash.

"In my mind, lightning never strikes twice in the same place so I am still philosophical that you get on the flight and you go about your life. I know my wife doesn't feel like that. Probably the last thing she wants to do now is fly, especially to Kuala Lumpur."

Mrs Sim said: "There must have been someone watching over us and saying 'You must not get on that flight'.

"We are very loyal to Malaysia Airlines and we always want to fly with Malaysia Airlines."

She added that her husband usually disliked flying with KLM.

"But, do you know what? At this moment we are so glad to be on that KLM flight rather than that Malaysia Airlines flight," she said.