Prince William, Kate Middleton and their kids were spotted getting off a £73 budget flight to Scotland, amid row over Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s private jet trips.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and their kids took the 8.45am flight from Norwich International Airport to Aberdeen Airport this morning. From the Aberdeen Airport, they are expected to be driven to visit the Queen and Prince Philip at Balmoral.
At the Aberdeen Airport, the royals were seen being escorted from the budget FlyBe plane and getting into waiting vehicles.
The Cambridges appearance on the cheap flight is expected to lead to comparisons with William’s brother Prince Harry and his wife Meghan after they took four private jet trips in the space of 11 days.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have been criticized by environmentalists and a number of other people after their private jet trips, advising people to take action on climate change (read here and here).
A passenger on the plane who spotted them said: “The family were sat right at the front. I fly this route all the time and we were none the wiser. No-one knew they were on the flight. Later on I realised that Kate’s mother was sat a few rows in front of me.”
Royal author Robert Jobson, who wrote a best-selling biography on Prince Charles, said it proved the Royal Family could take regular commercial flights.
He said: “There was a lot of nonsense spoken earlier in the week about how Prince Harry and Meghan Markle needed to fly in private jets because of security concerns. But the Royal Family have been using cheap airlines for years, Princess Diana would do it frequently.
“William and Kate flying on a budget airline proves you can do it, there was no trouble on the flight, and if there was they have their protection officers.
“It’s a shrewd move by the Duke of Cambridge and great for the public. They get to see the heir to the throne and his children who are next in line, and if they can fly budget then surely Harry, Meghan and their child are able to as well.
“A lot of people are claiming the royals are costing too much at the moment, and William is putting his money where his mouth is by going budget.”
Another passenger on the 44-seat plane, told The Sun: “Earlier in the flight, I’d had the feeling that someone had come on the plane that I’d recognised – but I thought it was just a footballer. We landed, and people then saw two black Range Rovers on the tarmac.
“Suddenly, Will, Kate, and the kids all got up, and left. They weren’t harassed by anyone at all as they got off the plane. They just seemed like a family travelling together to be honest.
“No one saw them get on the plane either. It was amazing how they did it – they must have slipped on quietly, after people were already seated.
“I couldn’t believe my eyes. You don’t expect to see royalty on a budget airliner.”
According to Daily Mail, UK spokesman for Kensington Palace said: “We do not comment on what they do with their private time as a family.”
There have been reports of a feud between the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, and veteran royal watcher Phil Dampier explained how William and Kate’s action could be seen as a way of hitting back at Harry and Meghan.
Dampier, who is the author of Royally Suited: Harry and Meghan In Their Own Words said: “The contrast between William and Kate and their family travelling on a cheap budget flight to Scotland and Harry and Meghan using private jets couldn’t be starker.
“A cynic might say the Cambridges have done it deliberately, bearing in mind all the recent stories about the two brothers and their wives not getting on.
“After all Meghan told Vogue magazine she didn’t want to be on the cover of the magazine she edited because it would have been boastful knowing full well Kate had been a cover girl.
“And Harry and Meghan made a point of saying they were only having two children to save the planet knowing William and Kate had three.
“Could this be William and Kate hitting back? At the very least they would have known they would have been criticised if they had taken a private jet.”