The royal family carried out 65 trips between them in 2016/2017 at a cost of £4.5million, according to an annual report released on Monday. Their trips to far flung destinations including Bhutan, Vietnam and Malaysia increased the royal's annual travel bill by £500,000 from the previous year, as the Queen, Prince of Wales and Duke and Duchess of Cambridge all sought to make connections around the world.
The single most expensive trip is Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall's nine-day tour of Romania, Italy and Austria at a cost of £154,000. The royal couple took the first trip in the official government jet – an RAF-operated converted Voyager – which was refitted for £10million to provide official transport for members of the royal family and government ministers.
Prince Charles and Camilla's tour of Italy and Austria was the most expensive trip
Meanwhile the second most expensive trip was the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's tour of India and Bhutan in April 2016. Flights for the couple and their team cost £35,732 while a further £62,331 was spent on a private jet to travel within the two countries.
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Flights appear to be one of the major expenses in the royal's travels, with Prince William's flights for a two-day trip to Vietnam in November adding up to £37,334, and £24,241 spent to transport the Duke and Duchess to the Somme commemorations in France along with Prince Harry.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's India and Bhutan tour was the second most expensive trip
Prince Charles and Camilla spent £42,960 on flights for their official visit to Ireland and Northern Ireland in May, while his official visit to the Middle East cost £92,605. Prince Andrew also carried out a number of official trips including a visit to Malaysia, with flights costing £21,831, and a private jet to Turkey was billed at £36,990.
While some have been alarmed at the cost of the royal family's travel, aides have pointed out that their official visits are carried out at the request of the government and are important to establish relationships with aides in countries around the world. Clive Alderton, the Prince's principal private secretary, said: "I sense that personal connections, or what the jargon might call people-to-people links, will have a very important role to play in defining this new chapter in relations with our friends and neighbours around the world."
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