As you would expect, there are an abundance of rules the Prince and Princess of Wales have to abide by in their daily life. The same is true, as you would imagine, for their three children – Prince George, 10, Princess Charlotte, eight, and Prince Louis, five. The golden rules the royal children have to live by range from having to wear the Honiton gown at their Christening to having to learn a second language and not being allowed to eat shellfish, on the more unusual side.
The golden rules the royal children have to live by range from having to wear the Honiton gown at their Christening to having to learn a second language and not being allowed to eat shellfish, on the more unusual side.
However, there is a certain protocol that Prince William and Princess Kate break time and time again and it revolves around their travels, although their rule-breaking days will soon be behind them.
Royal protocol suggests two heirs must not travel together. This is for security reasons as preserving the line of succession is of the utmost importance. However, keen followers of Prince William’s travels will know that he frequently takes both Prince George and Princess Charlotte with him overseas, alongside their mother Kate.
The royal couple have always been vocal about wanting their children to live “as normal a life as possible” which has meant the family has been able to experience places like Poland and Canada together. A young prince George made one of his first abroad trips alongside both of his parents on a flight to Australia when he was just nine months old.
As is often the way with royal standards, milestone birthdays come with change and it is Prince George’s abroad trips with his family which will experience a noticeable shift very soon.
Once the young royal, who is second in line to the throne, turns 12 he may have to take up separate travel arrangements, much like his father did at that age.
In an interview for HELLO!’s A Right Royal Podcast, His Majesty The King’s former pilot Graham Laurie revealed that Prince William flew with his parents and brother, Prince Harry, until his 12th birthday in 1994.
“After that, he had to have a separate aircraft,” Laurie remembered. The pilot also pointed out that exceptions were only made when the late Queen granted written permission for Prince William to fly with his father.
Danielle Stacey, HELLO!’s Online Royal Correspondent tells us how this rule came to be: “The unofficial role around royal heirs travelling together dates back to when flying was not deemed as safe as it is today. There were fears years ago over losing those closest to the throne should something tragic happen.”
A royal spokesman reportedly said in 2014: “While there is no official rule on this, it is something that the Queen has the final say on.”
“But as we’ve seen in recent years, the Prince and Princess of Wales do travel together with their children for tours, engagements and privately, Stacey continues. “It would not be cost-effective, practical or economically friendly for immediate family members to travel on different aircraft.”
Travel is something the royals take seriously and two heirs travelling separately isn’t the only golden rule. Though you may not expect it, the royals are allowed to travel by commercial airline.
Back in 2016, Princess Kate boarded a standard British Airways flight from Rotterdam to London while Prince William was spotted on a Ryanair flight to Glasgow a year prior. Following the public outrage at the Duke and Duchess of Sussex travelling on Elton John’s private jet to Nice, the Waleses travelled on a Flybe plane to Aberdeen.
Travelling in style, however, is always a royal must. Prince William was spotted with a monogrammed ‘W’ and a crown on his trip to Australia in 2020. The royals must also carry passports as standard immigration rules apply even to the heir to the throne.
The royals have also grown accustomed to taking their photographers abroad. Veteran photographer Arthur Edwards, who by 2020 had photographed seven royal weddings, four funerals and eight royal births, has travelled to New Zealand with Prince Harry and Southeast Asia with Prince William and Kate.