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Why the Queen doesn't need a passport

Her Majesty is exempt from a number of rules as part of the 'royal prerogative'

The Queen Prince Philip Australia
Chloe Best
Chloe BestLifestyle Features Editor
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The Queen may have visited 116 countries around the world during her record-breaking 64 year reign, but she has done so without ever having a passport. The monarch, who has visited more countries than any other British royal, isn't required to carry a passport or other travel documents as she doesn't need to prove her identity.

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The rule is explained in the first page of a British passport, which has the following message: "Her Britannic Majesty's Secretary of State requests and requires in the name of Her Majesty all those whom it may concern to allow the bearer to pass freely without let or hindrance and to afford the bearer such assistance and protection as may be necessary."

The Queen flight

The Queen doesn't need to travel with a passport

Put simply, as the Queen issues passports to British citizens, she is not required to carry one herself. However other members of the royal family including Prince Philip, Prince Charles and Princes William and Harry are all required to carry a passport when travelling.

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The monarch still regularly carries out royal engagements but hasn't made any official appearances outside the UK since 2015, when she made overseas visits to Malta and Germany. Other senior royals have represented the Queen on a number of recent tours, including Prince Charles and Camilla's three-day tour of Canada, focused on the 150th anniversary of Confederation, at the end of June.

The Queen Prince Philip Australia© Photo: Getty Images

The Monarch has visited 116 countries during her reign

Travelling without a passport is not the only law Her Majesty is exempt from; as part of the 'royal prerogative' – powers and rights the sovereign alone possesses - the Queen is the only person in the UK who can drive without a license, even though driving licenses are issued in her name. Among her many privileges, the Queen has never needed to take a driving test and is allowed to travel without a number plate on her state car.

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