The strict protocol that the British Royal Family, from Prince Charles to Prince William and Duchess Kate’s three kids, must follow governs their daily activities, from how they curtsy to how they must behave when dining with Queen Elizabeth. While royal visits may seem like a dream opportunity to visit remote countries and raise awareness of important issues, they are not exempt from regulations that must, in theory, be followed to the letter.
1) HEIRS TO THE THRONE MUST TRAVEL SEPARATELY
In order to protect royal lineage, two heirs to the throne may not travel together. In recent years however, this rule has been relaxed due to the increased air transport security that exists today. It happened in 2014 when Prince George accompanied his parents, William and Kate on a tour of Australia and New Zealand, and again in 2017 when the three of them, along with Princess Charlotte, toured Poland and Germany.
2) ALWAYS PACK A BLACK OUTFIT
At least one black oufit will be in any royal’s suitcase when they go on a trip, in the case of the death of a family member, states The Sun. In 1952 this rule caught Queen Elizabeth II off guard when her father King George VI passed away while she was visiting Kenya. On arriving to the United Kingdom she had to wait on the plane for the appropriate outfit to be brought to her before disembarking.
3) YES, IT’S FINE TO FLY COMMERCIAL (BUT TRY TO BOOK ON BA)
British royals should try to support the national airlines and fly with British Airways. However, they have been known to fly with other commercial airlines. In 2015, Prince William was spotted on a Ryanair flight to Glasgow. A year later, the Duchess of Cambridge traveled in seat 1A on a British Airways flight from Rotterdam to London, and in August 2019 they took a Flybe flight to Aberdeen together.
4) COME BACK SOON!
Royal visits seldom last more than two weeks and during their stay they rarely have much time to themselves. The royals have a busy schedule that usually includes four commitments per day. There is hardly any room for tourism on these trips. As Gordon Rayner, a veteran reporter on the royal visits, told the Telegraph, “[Royal] visits to world-famous sites rarely last more than 40 minutes.”
5) THE ROYAL WARDROBE MUST REFLECT THE DESTINATION
During royal tours, the royal styling team is in charge of carefully selecting the clothes that each member will wear at the scheduled engagements, from lengths and colors to the local brands, in order to respect the customs and traditions and, at the same time, pay tribute to the culture of the country being visited.
6) DON’T FORGET YOUR ENTOURAGE
As you might have expected, British royalty require a complex, multidisciplinary team – and even more so during these trips – which usually includes private secretaries, press officers, hairstylists, bodyguards, royal nannies, a doctor, as well as a top-level security team of trained experts. William and Kate traveled to Pakistan with a 14-member entourage, a number similar to that of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's Australian and South African tours, according to a report in Cosmopolitan.
7) KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE – AND THEIR LANGUAGE.
Representatives of the British monarchy must learn basic greetings in the language of the country they are visiting. “It is the correct protocol to practice the etiquette of the country or culture you are visiting, in order to show respect, so each royal knows how to make the best first impression,” Myka Meier, founder of Beaumont Etiquette, told Reader’s Digest.