• Sweden edition
Malmö invites surfer back ‘to see the waves’

Malmö invites surfer back ‘to see the waves’

Published: 02 Jul 2012 08:45 GMT+02:00
Updated: 02 Jul 2012 08:45 GMT+02:00

Tourist officials in southern Sweden have invited a 19-year-old professional surfer back on a free trip to Malmö after he accidentally visited last week due to a Ryanair ticketing foul-up.

The officials from Tourism in Skåne contacted Toby Donachie after reading about his adventure last week, where a ticket mishap saw him in Malmö instead of at a surfing camp in Biarritz, southern France after boarding a Ryainair flight in England.

The pro surfer, from Cornwall in the UK, somehow managed to pass through two security checks with the wrong ticket, realizing he was en route to Sweden as cabin crew announced the plane was flying over Denmark.

Representatives from the tourism company were initially surprised to read about the mishap, but soon found a way to rectify the situation.

“Toby seems like a pretty spontaneous guy, so we thought we’d invite him back here for a chance to see our surfing culture first hand,” Heléne Östberg of Tourism in Skåne told The Local.

“Everything we read about the story mentioned that we don’t have any waves down here, but we do! We have great waves.”

The invitation includes all flights, food, and accommodation (at “a very nice hotel in Skåne's north-west”) – and according to Östberg - the chance to surf off the coast of Sweden.

Donachie was so surprised at the invitation that he spilled tea all over his laptop in tears of laughter, quickly and graciously accepting the invitation via the social media network Twitter.

While it’s not every day that a flight mix-up makes international news, Donachie is already looking forward to the trip, telling The Local it was a “privilege” to get the invite.

“I know very little about surfing in Malmö: I’d previously said in interviews that there were no waves, and obviously there are – and the guys at Tourism in Skåne are ready to prove it to me! I’m very much looking forward to it!”

Despite admittedly knowing “very little” about Sweden, the 19-year-old is especially keen to surf some Scandinavian waves.

“I’m so happy that this mistake has happened because I probably wouldn’t have been given the opportunity to visit Sweden otherwise,” Donachie told The Local.

“I’d really like to come over on a swell so I can really test out the waves.”

Meanwhile, in a story full of surprises, preparation is key for the second chapter.

When asked for the plan of attack if Donachie’s plane lands somewhere besides Malmö, Östberg laughs.

“Can these things happen twice? If he lands somewhere else, we’ll just have to pick him up and the adventure will begin there,” she told The Local.

Oliver Gee

Follow Oliver on Twitter here

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

09:10 July 2, 2012 by spy
Good story but the word 'invite' is a verb and not a noun.....
09:50 July 2, 2012 by skogsbo
he will be sorely disappointed with the surf down there, the only big wave there is crime.
09:57 July 2, 2012 by Paul_225
Why? Why do the authorities need to spend tax money on some guys holiday? I want a holiday, send me on one. God dammit.
10:01 July 2, 2012 by Garry Jones
Skogsbo - Like▲
10:40 July 2, 2012 by EP
"Toby seems like a pretty spontaneous guy, so we thought we'd invite him back here for a chance to see our surfing culture first hand," Heléne Östberg of Tourism in Skåne told The Local.

Ha, what do Swedes know about spontaneity?

Lucky guy though that we the tax payer pay for his vacation ...
11:24 July 2, 2012 by shard
spy, oh dear, you fell foul of the first rule of being a grammar nazi: always check what you think you know is actually the truth. (hint, try the OED for usage)

Paul & EP - this is an extremely cheap and effective bit of promotion on behalf of Malmö and Skåne; a few thousand krone offer buys what would be many tens of thousands of krone in tourist marketing. When an opportunity like this comes along, one would be negligent *not* to take advantage.
12:05 July 2, 2012 by Paul_225
What kind of method is that? It's going to be a speck on the internet for a week and then forgotten forever. Nobody cares, it's just a stupid gimmick.
13:33 July 2, 2012 by Cephalectomy
nice move malmö, thats how u manage our money
13:47 July 2, 2012 by Åskar

That's how they manage part of the money (and not necessarily tax money) earmarked for advertising and PR.
13:55 July 2, 2012 by spy

Learn the meaning of 'colloquial usage'.
14:05 July 2, 2012 by foxpur

Oxford dictionary of 1966 states that it is both verb and noun.
14:42 July 2, 2012 by Flappytango
Tony dont do it!

This is just a trick to get you back here so the police can give you a urine test. They think you must have been high to get on the wrong plane last time.

I guess maybe you might be high if you think there is worthwhile surfing in malmo.
14:42 July 2, 2012 by muscle
hmm i dont understand, why are you people so against sweden ? :S Jealous that no body invited you or what ?
14:50 July 2, 2012 by Åskar

It's because people just love to whinge about things they know nothing about and don't understand under the anonymity that is Internet.
21:23 July 2, 2012 by Radhus
I would be careful if I was this surfie. I bet he's getting everything paid for just so he can go back to Britain and tell everyone how wonderful the Swedes are (the few that are remaining there) and better yet, how "wonderful" the Swedish "surf" is.

He wasn't disappointed about landing in Sweden by mistake. He wasn't complaining or even threatening to sue, but the Skåne tourist board saw his "story" in the news and thought about how great it would be to use this dude as a cheap promotion tool. The Swedes are that desparate for tourists.

@muscle have you ever lived in Sweden? As if anyone would be jealous lol
21:41 July 2, 2012 by dizzymoe33
I want to come to Sweden and go surfing!!!! :o)
00:16 July 3, 2012 by shard
spy: dear boy, now you are just making yourself look foolish.
00:51 July 3, 2012 by cupidcub
lol.. surfing in skåne ? yeah the waves are indeed big enough to go up to your toe..
07:05 July 3, 2012 by si
There is surf in Skåne..
08:34 July 3, 2012 by muscle

I have been living here for the last three years, and not even a single moment did I regret my stay here, compared to the living in UK and belgium.

And after meeting the show-offs from britain or usa, I felt even more proud that I am living among the people who arent show-offs atleast, if not simple.

I am proud to live in a country that values your work, works good in engineering research, have started organizations that are quickly expanding to different countries, and best of all, all the people love to do exercise

I am really proud to be encouraged by the govt to open new businesses in the country and also love getting paid for fika, twice a day every day, and additional break before OR after lunch!

I am proud to get vacations when I want, as much as even a month off!, get a parental leave with my wife having a maternal leave, all paid!

So yes, if you guys feel there is nothing to get jealous about, well then YOU better visit sweden
11:36 July 4, 2012 by delfinita
@muscle i agree 100%. There are ups and downs but that happens everywhere. So adapt and try to enjoy. The day i feel miserable constantly, i wont stay put and whine, i will do something about it and leave, taking the good memories with me.
Today's headlines
Police seeking missing Swede in London
Sofie Marie Jansson, who is currently missing in London. Photo: Metropolitan Police

Police seeking missing Swede in London

British police have issued a plea for tips in the search to find Swedish national Sofie Marie Jansson who hasn't been seen for almost a week. READ () »

University applications rocket to record high

University applications rocket to record high

Swedish universities continue to draw vast amounts of applicants with the number of prospective students seeking a third level education increasing for the seventh year in a row. READ () »

Man jailed in US over Lars Vilks murder plot
Swedish artist Lars Vilks pictured in New York in 2012. Photo: Linus Sundahl-Djerf/TT

Man jailed in US over Lars Vilks murder plot

American authorities have sentenced a 20-year-old accomplice of 'Jihad Jane' to five years in prison for an attempted terror plot to kill Swedish artist Lars Vilks, after getting involved with the murder plans when he was a teenager. READ () »

Sweden scraps 'new start zones' after EU input
Integration Minister Erik Ullenhag visits a school in Tensta, one of the neighbourhoods mentioned when he and his colleagues first floated the new start zone proposal. File: TT

Sweden scraps 'new start zones' after EU input

Sweden has abandoned a plan to ease taxes for small companies in blighted areas after the European Commission challenged its legality. READ () »

'Easter eggs an invitation to spread germs'
A typical Swedish Easter egg. Photo: Jessica Gow/TT

'Easter eggs an invitation to spread germs'

A Swedish microbiologist has warned that traditional Swedish Easter eggs laden with candy are an open invitation to the spread of bacteria and viruses. "Is this really a good idea?" he asked. READ () »

Jammed truck snarls Stockholm rush hour
Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

Jammed truck snarls Stockholm rush hour

PICTURES: A truck got wedged inside a tunnel in central Stockholm on Thursday, with authorities concerned the accident may have damaged cables in the tunnel's ceiling. READ () »

Kids in Victorian garb mark Swedish Easter
A Swedish Easter witch holding daffodils. File photo: TT

Kids in Victorian garb mark Swedish Easter

In India, I'd notice Easter only from the traffic jam outside the churches, but here witches, egg hunts, and feathers mark the Christian holiday. The Local's Deepti Vashisht brings you the various shades of Swedish Easter. READ () »

Swedish MP ordered chemtrail probe
Chemtrails?: Shutterstock.

Swedish MP ordered chemtrail probe

A Swedish MP who launched an official government investigation into the existence of chemtrails tells The Local why he thinks Swedes deserve the truth, even if it may leave some conspiracy theorists unsatisfied. READ () »

PM pleads ignorance of Vattenfall's Nuon bid
Fredrik Reinfeldt answers the constitutional affairs committee's questions. Photo: TT

PM pleads ignorance of Vattenfall's Nuon bid

Sweden's prime minister on Thursday said Vattenfall itself, not its owners the Swedish state, had responsibility for the loss-making Nuon deal. READ () »

'Kockums submarine raid may be illegal': lawyer
Photo: TT

'Kockums submarine raid may be illegal': lawyer

A Swedish lawyer says the Swedish military may have broken the law when it raided the Malmö premises of German defence giant Thyssen Krupp. READ () »

Swedish supermarket Ica pulls contested Easter commercial off air
Swedish royals set baptism date for princess
People-watching April 16
Who's the prime minister's heir?
Alfie Atkins
Are children's books the key to families integrating in Sweden?
'Sweden Dem protests cater to party's martyr image'
'Swedish research grants were fantastic, but now it's like Australia'
Only in Sweden: The ten problems you'd never encounter elsewhere
Swedes stopped to take my picture, but didn't look me in the eyes
Business & Money
A swipe of the hand replaced cash and cards in Lund
Video: Oliver Gee finds out how to embrace The Swedish Hug
Abba duo hints at reunion
Flash mobs hug it out across Sweden
People-watching April 11-13
Swedes to give six-hour workday a go
Aussie choir member wows Abba in Sweden
Stockholm magic a surprise YouTube hit
Gallery: The Local's Property of the Week
Swedes find 200-year-old gravestone in living room
Stockholm School of Economics
Sponsored Article
Why a bachelor's degree is no longer enough
Deepti Vashisht
Deepti Vashisht dissects the magic of Sweden's personal ID number
Ten signs you've been in Sweden too long
Jimi Fritze heard every word when doctors discussed taking his organs
A Swedish farmer explains why the new bestiality ban is 'pointless'
Sponsored Article
Learning Swedish the easy way
Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Blog Update: The Diplomatic Dispatch

28 October 15:16

The Green Growth Group Summit »

"Today on the 28 October in Brussels, a large group of key EU Ministers and business people, including UK Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Edward Davey, and Swedish Environment Minister Lena Ek, will meet to discuss green growth. They all have a stake in resolving a challenge which, although it is crucial..." READ »

jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit: