Written by Jack Longstaff / SWNS

A husband booked his wife a surprise birthday holiday and managed to get her all the way to Greece without her knowing her destination – and even the pilot kept it quiet.

Romantic Steve Millar, 53, took wife Nicola, 50, out to dinner and broke the news they were going on a surprise holiday in a few days time.

But he kept the destination secret – confiscating her boarding pass, getting her to shut her eyes at the gate and covering her ears during the airport announcements.

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On the plane, the Easyjet crew got on board and the pilot announced on the tannoy: “I won’t say where we are going because you all know, apart from a lady in seat C20.”

It wasn’t until 1,766 miles later when she was walking through Corfu airport she realized where she was.

Amazed Nicola, a financeworker from Shrewsbury, said: “It was magical.

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“Steve will be able to live off the brownie points for a long time. I just couldn’t keep from smiling for the whole time. It’s why I married him in the first place. If I could I choose, I’d choose to marry him again.

“It was surreal and spectacular. I found myself crying with happiness.”


Steve, a baker, managed to get Nicola through check-in, security, passport control and the three hour flight without her picking up any clues, last month.

Staff at Manchester Airport arranged for aircraft staff to keep Nicola completely in the dark about where she was going.

They enjoyed a three-night stay at the four star Ela Beach Hotel. Since their vacation was at the end of the tourist season, there were only 17 other guests – and on three occasions, the couple had the hotel dining room to themselves.

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Nicola, who is also a mum-of-three, is normally “impossible” to surprise and the holiday was a “magical” way to celebrate a landmark birthday.

She said: “We were out for dinner with friends and Steve just told me to pack a case because he had a surprise for me. I was so excited, but I can usually guess a present from a mile away. But even when we were in the air, I had no idea. I kept second guessing the whole time, but I didn’t have a clue.


“Even when Steve has tried to surprise me in the past, it’s been impossible. I tried to avoid clues because I knew that if I looked, I’d find them.

“I was sure that I’d hear someone talking on the plane or it’d slip out. I didn’t go looking for clues because I wanted the surprise. It was fabulous to land without knowing. I don’t think anyone will ever be able to repeat it.

“I knew I recognized the airport. I had been to Corfu before. It didn’t click until I saw some Greek writing inside the airport. I just yelled ‘oh my god, I’m in Corfu’.

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“Everyone in the queue cheered and clapped. I was really excited and overwhelmed. There was hardly anyone around at the hotel. It felt like I had the whole hotel to myself.

Steve said he usually relies on his wife of 28 years to do all of the holiday booking. He said the experience was “nerve-wracking” and stressful, but all of the effort was worth it.

He said: “I was thinking about it for two or three weeks. I wanted to do something special because Nicola didn’t like the thought of getting older. She has always hid her age where she could.

“I was going to throw a big party but everywhere was booked up with it being so close to Halloween.

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“It was very difficult to keep it a secret. Even I didn’t think I’d manage it but I was excited to see how far we could get without her finding out.

“What they did at the airport for us was amazing. To see her face when she realized was incredible. I can’t believe we got that far.

“It was a brilliant moment and we had a fantastic weekend. It was perfect for what she wanted.

“I’ve been getting some stick from my friends saying that I’ve set the bar high. But Nicola doesn’t owe me anything. She does enough for me every day.”

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