The modern planes of today often mean you are crammed up next to neighbor without much space for your long-haul flight. As airlines try to squeeze in as many people as they can and make a profit, unfortunately, it means you can sometimes be stuck next to some odd characters. Or you may find yourself lucky and make a new friend.
But for the other passengers on one flight out of United Arab Emirates, they may have been really in fear of being attacked by a predator bird. As a Saudi Prince in 2017 proceeded to book up 80 seats for his prize falcons. And the strange thing was he was even allowed to bring them on board. So the next time you are on a long-haul flight, count yourself lucky that you are not sitting next to a bird of prey.
A member of the Saudi Arabian royal family booked up the entire middle section of a flight on Qatar airlines for his falcons. The hooded birds simply sat down calmly during the flight, though you can imagine that other passengers may not have been so calm.
Hooded falcons are known to stay in a state of calm, needed for transporting them as otherwise they may have panicked. Of course, this meant they were not able to enjoy the in-flight movies and entertainment.
Though this may seem quite an odd case due to the immense number of falcons, in the middle east it is actually quite common. The governments require falcons to have passports, this is to combat the illegal trading of the birds. The falcon is seen as a prize possession and has a strong culture link to their heritage which means the royal family always has many of them.
Lufthansa is known to have a patented bird stand to accommodate some of their super-rich travelers.