It seems like the British royal family has an endless list of rules and protocols to live by. Prince William and Kate Middleton would like to do go on vacation, but they can’t do it without breaking one lesser-known one. Here’s what they’re asking for and why.
Middleton and William have a problem: they’d like to go on vacation with their three children, but they’re weighed down by centuries of rules. One of these rules states that heirs to the throne cannot travel together. This means William isn’t allowed to travel with his father, nor can he take the same train or plane with his son George.
The reason is obvious: should something tragic occur, there would always be another heir ready to go. The United States has a similar rule about the Presidential line of succession. One cabinet secretary is always missing at the State of the Union and kept in a secure location. They’re called the “designated survivor.” This means just in case the rest of the line gets wiped out by a tragedy, there’s still one more official out there somewhere ready to be sworn in.
Anyway, as you’d imagine, not being able to travel with your young son can pose a bit of an issue. William and Middleton are asking Queen Elizabeth for permission to take a flight together. She granted the permission in 2014 so the baby George could travel to New Zealand. However, this exception doesn’t last forever. Once George turns 12 in 2025, he’ll have to travel on a different plane than his father.
Old Rules Abound
Having to fill your tween son in on why he has to take his own airplane sounds like a pretty rough talk, but not as rough as one Prince Harry could have with his son. As it stands, the 2013 royal succession act means baby Archie would have to ask his reigning monarch, be it Elizabeth or Charles or William or George, for permission to get married.
New Idea ran an absurd story about Meghan Markle flying to the UK so she could beg Middleton to lift the statue, but that was made up. Archie’s not getting married for another few decades. He’ll only have to get royal clearance if he stays in the top six in the line of succession, so an additional child for William or even George would bump him down.
Laws And Prerogatives
Tabloids have an infatuation with obscure royal rules. Woman’s Day once cited a 1717 law to claim Prince Charles would have full legal custody of Archie once he becomes king. This wasn’t a law at all, however. It was an archaic royal prerogative and therefore would have lofty implications in the 2020s. Can you imagine the international scandal if Charles tried to rip Archie away from his parents? That’s a very bad look, to say the least.
Here’s hoping William and Middleton can dot the requisite “i’s” so they can travel with their son on vacation.