In the wake of harsh criticisms against Prince Harry and Meghan Markle for their use of carbon-heavy private jets, Prince William and Kate Middleton opted to take their family on a budget airline flight yesterday, CNN reported.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge reportedly booked seats for themselves and their children on the airline Flybe when making the journey from Norwich, England to Aberdeen, Scotland, where they are visiting Queen Elizabeth at her summer home of Balmoral Castle. CNN reports that the flights for that journey start at just £73, or $89 USD, and go up to £249, or $303 USD, for a fully flexible fare.
The Cambridge's flight choice comes as a stark contrast to the several recent private plane rides taken by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, which have drawn the attention of critics who have blasted the young couple for being hypocritical. Earlier this month, Harry took a private plane — which has a much higher carbon footprint than commercial travel — to a conference where he spoke about the imminent threat of climate change, sparking initial criticisms. And then just last week, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex took a private jet to travel to their vacation in Nice and Ibiza, drawing even more negative comments.
The backlash has pushed several celebrities to speak out in defense of Harry and Meghan. Elton John, who leant the private plane to the couple so that they could stay at his home in Nice, called the attacks "malicious" and the accusations that they are hurting the environment "untrue."
"To support Prince Harry’s commitment to the environment, we ensured their flight was carbon neutral, by making the appropriate contribution to Carbon Footprint™," the singer tweeted out last week.
Singer Pink also came to the royal's defense, tweeting out that "The way people treat [Meghan] is the most public form of bullying I have seen in a while. It’s out of control."
I’m happy to see people coming to the defense of The Duke and Duchess of Sussex. The way people treat her is the most public form of bullying I have seen in a while. It’s out of control. Let’s all be a bit kinder, huh? Let’s show our children that it’s cool to be kind.— P!nk (@Pink) August 20, 2019
Actress Jameela Jamil also came out in support of the couple, and accused the media of targeting Meghan because of her race. "Just say you hate her because she’s black, and him for marrying a black woman and be done with it,” Jamil tweeted on Tuesday.
Critics, however, have maintained that if the couple is asking others to change their behavior to address climate change, then they should too, and that race has nothing to do with it.
People are saying that the public is racist against Megan. This is rubbish - people do not like to be told what to do by people who totally disregard their own advice. Personally, I couldn’t care less if Megan was blue or green, but I don’t like being told what to do by her.— ann silva (@annsilva14) August 22, 2019
Others have posed that the royals are not typically allowed to fly commercial due to security restriction. Prince William, however, has a history of taking budget airlines, as documented by Money. And according to a report in Vanity Fair, former royal protection officer Ken Wharfe said that commercial flights are common practice. "During my time at the palace most of the flights we took were commercial on British Airways, the national carrier,” Wharfe said.
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