Kate Middleton 'hasn't put a foot wrong' says expert
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Meghan Markle, 39, spoke up about what royal tours were like in her explosive interview with Oprah which aired earlier this week. The Duchess of Sussex branded state visits as “exhausting” but due to her current status no longer has to carry the trips out. So what is required of royals who are still senior members of the family such as Kate Middleton?
Express.co.uk spoke to Anne Chertoff, COO of Beaumont Etiquette which runs a Duchess-themed etiquette course.
She explained that lots of work goes into these trips as they are very much for business not pleasure.
Preparation for a royal visit abroad starts in advance of the trip.
The Duchess of Cambridge must learn key information she will need, from personal details of those she’ll meet to what she’ll have to wear.
“Before a member of the Royal Family leaves for a state visit, members of their staff will inform them of their schedule and the names and roles of the people they will be meeting with,” said Chertoff.
“They will also be told what the proper greetings are in the country they are going to be in, as well as if there are any attire guidelines they need to follow.
“They will be informed of the names and roles of all the people they will be meeting with, the background on the organizations they will be meeting with, as well as lessons in greeting customs and dining, especially if there are uncommon items that may be served or dining etiquette protocols they are not accustomed to in the United Kingdom.”
The trips mustn’t be considered as holidays. “As senior royals, they are travelling on behalf of the monarchy and will be seen as working,” said Chertoff.
“As they will be there professionally, they likely will take on the social role of professionals the entire trip.”
This means that there is little opportunity to relax.
“Most trips will be short and with the schedule packed, with very little time to do much other than the scheduled events,” the expert said.
However, according to Chertoff, some leisure can be added.
“Some state visits include recreational time on their schedules,” she detailed.
“We have seen members of the Royal Family participating at sporting events – as spectators as well as participants.
“Itineraries are often jampacked with events from morning to night, however, some downtime may be added to the schedule if they wish to include it.”
There’s no denying the visits are challenging, though. Royal reporter Gordon Rayner, who has attended 20 royal tours, has said he has “no envy” for the way in which the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, along with other royals, must travel when on tour.
Rayner explained to the Telegraph, royal tours are “choreographed to the minute.”
Guidelines are so specific that meetings and appearances are scheduled right down to the second, including when the Royal Family members sit down to dinner, and when they must whizz off.
“Touring the world meeting heads of state and being shown cultural treasures sounds like a wonderful life,” continued Rayner.
“Yet I have no envy for the Royal Family.
“Their visits to world-famous sites rarely last more than 40 minutes, and the chances are they will never return.”
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