A baby boy has been given free airline tickets for life after his mother gave birth at 35,000ft while on a flight from Saudi Arabia to India.

Jose Cicymol went into labour aboard Jet Airways Flight 9W 569 from King Fahd Airport, near Dammam, which took off for Kochi around 2.55am on Sunday, according to Daily Mail.

By 8am the flight had declared a medical emergency and was diverted to Mumbai as Cicymol, who was 30 weeks pregnant, went into premature labour.

Realising they wouldn't make it, a fellow passenger and nurse Mini Wilson offered to help, and the boy was born at 8.45am at 35,000ft, according to Times of India.

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The airline said it was the first time a birth had taken place on one of their flights and that they would be giving the boy free flights for life.

A Jet Airways statement said: "We are pleased to announce the successful birth of a baby boy on board flight 9W 569 from Dammam to Cochin of June 18, 2017.

"The Boeing 737 with 162 guests was diverted to Mumbai as one of the guests went into premature labour.

"The guest delivered a baby boy at 35,000 feet. On landing, both mother and baby were rushed to Holy Spirit Hospital in Mumbai and are doing well.

"Jet Airways has informed the family of the guest who are en route from Kochi. The airline expresses its gratitude to Ms Wilson, the on-board paramedic for her guidance."

The mother and baby were taken to a hospital upon arriving in Mumbai and the flight continued to Kochi, arriving two and a half hours behind schedule.

The Jet Airways website says women up to 38 weeks pregnant are allowed to travel on aircraft, with restrictions.