A STUDENT flying to Dubai mentioned to a fellow passenger it was his birthday – and was showered with gifts worth £350.
Darren Little got chatting to the man, known only as Ali, as the prepared to board the flight at Heathrow on Thursday.
Darren, from Lambeth, London, was astonished during the flight to get a tap on the shoulder and see Ali handing over Apple Airpods worth £160, Jo Malone cologne worth £110 and Carolina Herrera aftershave worth £80.
Darren, 24, took to social media to share the kindness of the complete stranger.
He posted a picture of the airpods with the caption: “The man behind me on the plane just bought me AirPods from Emirates Duty Free for my bday.”
He then shared an image of the aftershave and joked: “Btw I also got gifted these 2 and now I’m scared I’ve been wifed up.”
Darren’s post, which had racked up more than 8,000 likes, was met with disbelief by social media users.
@osito98x wrote: “Omg what”.
@Whomaii added: “You’re so damn lucky.”
Anas Ashour grumbled: “The man behind me on the plane asked me not to recline my seat before I even did it.”
Some viewers took a more cynical view, including @MsJamilah, who suggested the stranger was hoping for more than gratitude.
Another viewer said: “He wants you, bro. LOL.
But Gary Souter countered: “There are still some good, kind human beings in this world and it’s sad that when nice things happen our brains are wired to think there’s an ulterior motive. Hope you had a good birthday!”
Speaking today, Darren, who is studing English literature and history, said: “I was in total shock.
“We were just having a chit chat before and after boarding.
“And then I was mentioning I was travelling to celebrate my birthday.
“He asked if I received any gifts and I said not really but the trip is essentially a gift to myself.
“After that he asked if I liked the AirPods I said yes but they’re a bit pricey.
“Then literally minutes later he gave me a box of a brand new pair and said ‘happy birthday’.
“I couldn’t even thank him enough it was so kind and random.
“Some people in the comments are just trying to add scandal to a totally innocent act of kindness.
“There are people in this world that do things without the need for it being transactional.”