Though all-expenses paid trips make the best presents, its not usually possible to keep a surprise from the person youre gifting it to (lucky them).
After all, you have to get all their details, make sure theyre prepared for a sun or city getaway, and then theres all that faff at the airport.
But one determined husband, Steve Millar, was able to whisk his wife Nicola away to Greece as a birthday present and she didnt know where they were going until they arrived.
Even the pilot kept shtum.
Steve, 53, from Shrewsbury, took Nicola out of 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 covered her ears during the airport announcements.
It wasnt difficult to get the easyJet crew in on the romantic plan either as the pilot announced to passengers: I wont say where we are going because you all know, apart from a lady in seat C20.
Staff at Manchester airport also arranged for aircraft members to keep Nicola completely in the dark about where she was going too.
It wasnt until 1,766 miles later when she was walking through Corfu airport she realised where she was.
It was magical, said Nicola.
Steve will be able to live off the brownie points for a long time. I just couldnt keep smiling for the whole time. It was surreal and spectacular. I found myself crying with happiness.
I was sure that Id hear someone talking on the plane or itd slip out. I didnt go looking for clues because I wanted the surprise.
It was fabulous to land without knowing. I knew I recognised the airport. I had been to Corfu before. It didnt click until I saw some Greek writing inside the airport.
I just yelled “oh my god Im in Corfu”. Everyone in the queue cheered and clapped. I was really excited and overwhelmed.
Steve, a baker, said the experience was nerve-wracking and worried that the secret would slip out.
It was very difficult to keep it a secret. Even I didnt think Id manage it but I was excited to see how far we could get without her finding out, he said.
What they did at the airport for us was amazing. To see her face when she realised was incredible. I cant believe we got that far.
It was a brilliant moment and we had a fantastic weekend. It was perfect for what she wanted.