The communications manager at the airport helped arrange a cake, flowers and two ecstatic families of the couple at the airport.
Love is in the air(port) indeed! In a lot of movies, most couples unite at the airport and confess their love in a dreamy way. Yashraj Chhabra, who is from Auckland, decided to take it up a notch. He wanted to propose to his long-distance girlfriend Riiya Shukla, who is also from Auckland, in a unique way: over the PA (public address) system at the Auckland Airport. “In Bollywood movies, I think eight out of 10 times, the couple would only come together at the airport,” a very ecstatic Chhabra told CNN Travel. “The actress is leaving. The actor would run to the airport (to stop her) and they will live happily ever after.” To the couple, airports have played an important role in their relationship because Shukla lives in Melbourne, Australia, and works for the Victoria state government.
It took a month for Chhabra to plan the perfect airport proposal. The best way to pop the question was inspired by his girlfriend's favorite films which were Bollywood classics that often ended with the couple reuniting at airports. He then set out to get in touch with someone from the airport who could help his plan take off. He eventually found Laura Platts, the Auckland Airport communications manager, who was able to organize logistics, which included bringing a cake, flowers and two very excited families of the couple to the airport. A professional crew was also called to film the whole thing!
Shukla had reached the airport in a sour mood - first, her flight got delayed then she lost her luggage at the airport. She was ready to complain at the customer service counter but her family members kept calling her and urging her to meet them in the arrivals hall. "I was under shock," Shukla exclaimed about what she saw when she got to the arrivals hall. As Chhabra's pre-recorded proposal played over the PA system, he got down on one knee for the love of his life, with his loved ones behind him holding up signs spelling out “Will you marry me?” "Attention Riiya Shukla, you are hearing my voice because I really need to talk to you," Chhabra read over the loudspeaker, as per the clip of the proposal shared by the airport.
"Every minute that we have spent together has been the most amazing moment of my life. So, I have something really important to ask you. Will you marry me?" Chhabra asked. Without a second of hesitation, Shukla said yes and Chhabra placed the ring on her finger. “I tend to get lost in his eyes and as romantic as this sounds, it’s actually true. I do. For a while, it just felt like it was just us. Then, all of our family and friends came and they all hugged us. It was pretty magical,” she told the outlet.
Despite living in two different countries, now the couple plans on tying the knot officially back in their origin country: India. Their honeymoon will take place in yet another. It looks like the airport was indeed the perfect place to propose! Despite having different addresses the couple are happy as long as they have each other. “As much as I thought Melbourne was my home,” Shukla shared, “Now, I would say he is my home.”
"She's a hard woman to surprise and I really wanted to catch her off guard. I wasn't sure if Auckland Airport would go for it, but I was delighted they said yes to making my dream proposal become a reality," Chhabra was quoted as saying by the Auckland Airport, per News Hub.
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