Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Slammed for Flying Private
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are certainly making the most of their time off from royal duties this summer. The couple, who welcomed their first son Archie in May, have reportedly made their way to Scotland to spend a bit of time with the Queen, to Ibiza for a little time in the sun, and to France for a quick visit with Elton John. Though nobody is mad at the pair for taking a much-deserved break, people are apparently a little upset at the couple’s chosen mode of transportation.
According to The Daily Mail, the couple was spotted leaving the South of France on Sunday as they boarded their fourth private jet in 11 days. Harry, Meghan, and Archie were photographed boarding a private Cessna 680 Citation Sovereign jet, likely on their way home. The pair also arrived in France via a 12-seater Cessna aircraft.
Prior to this trip, the couple also flew private for their round-trip journey to Ibiza where they also stayed at Vista Alegre Ibiza, a gated community nicknamed "billionaire's playground." Homes there, InStyle reported, can rent for up to $145,000 a week.
This penchant for flying private is rubbing fans of the couple the wrong way considering just how often they lecture on the importance of being kind to the environment.
“Whether you think recent criticism of Harry and Meghan is fair or not it's worrying to me that they don't seem to care and aren't about to change their behavior,” royal watcher Phil Dampier told the Daily Mail. “They must have known that taking private jets four times in quick succession would leave them open to charges of hypocrisy but they just went ahead and did it anyway.”
Dampier noted, other royals have flown private in the past as well, but aren’t as vocal about the damages to the environment as Harry and Meghan.
“It is simply that people don't like to be lectured on climate change by those who don't follow their own advice,” he said.
Dampier isn’t the only one calling out the royal pair either.
According to The Daily Mail, Labour MP Teresa Pearce said of the couple, “given the position they have taken publicly about being responsible on climate change, this does seem an anomaly which they should look at.” She added, “I find this quite surprising because it doesn't fit with their public image and the way they're so concerned about the planet and the environment.”
And former royal protection officer Ken Wharfe, who protected Princess Diana as well as her boys as children, said there was absolutely no security reason why the pair would have to fly private.
“During my time at the palace most of the flights we took were commercial on British Airways, the national carrier,” Wharfe told Vanity Fair. “BA were always very helpful with VIP departures and keeping the flights out of the press. I never had a problem with Diana, William and Harry on the numerous holidays we took to the Caribbean. We always flew commercial; in fact I don’t remember flying private. It’s no guarantee that the security is any better. You’re better off with BA security because they’re used to working with VIPs.”
For the record, The Daily Mail noted, the couple’s private plane journey to and from France had an estimated carbon footprint of three tons. The pair could have instead chosen to take one of the dozen or so commercial flights to the area instead for a much more environmentally-friendly trip. According to My Climate, the family could have flown roundtrip business class and had an output of just 1.1 tons of carbon.
Long story short, people apparently want Meghan and Harry — who specifically said they’d only have two children for the sake of the environment — to not only use their platform to share important information about living a sustainable life, but want them living by example too.