Spanish royals beat the recession with cutbacks

Thursday September 16, 2010

When it comes to saving money, the Spanish royal family have already shown their mettle.

Last year, Queen Sofia, 71, made headlines when it emerged she had flown on a budget airline to visit her brother, former King Constantine of Greece, in London.

This August, the green monarch - Sofia drives her own electric car - and King Juan Carlos, cut short their annual holiday in Majorca, spent less time on their royal yacht and entertained fewer guests, in a bid to tighten belts.

Now, in a show of solidarity with their people, the royal family is cutting its budget for the first time in history – a move that will make it the cheapest royal household to run in Europe.

As the Spanish nation attempts to emerge from nearly two years of recession, the palace has announced that the household budget for 2011 will be significantly reduced – the exact amount will be revealed later this month when parliament is asked to approve the figures.

It's thought it will be cut by up to nine per cent, reducing funds available to the king by as much as €800,000 (£669,000).

In comparison, when it comes to European royal expenditure the Windsors are top of the list, followed by the Dutch royals, the Norwegian monarchy and the Belgians.

Photo: ę Rex Features

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