In case you were also flying to Nice in the days leading to New Year’s Eve, you may have noticed two familiar faces traveling in the economy class: 33-year-old Prince Harry and his 36-year-old fiancee Meghan Markle!
The couple flew to France for a relaxed holiday and stayed in a private home on the French Riviera guarded by heavy security at all times.
Prince Harry and actress Meghan Markle (Photo by Chris Jackson/Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
Harry of Wales is said to have convinced the actress to go to the south-east coast of France for some sunshine and good wine after Christmas. Interestingly, the pair boarded first to avoid being spotted by other people and sat at the back of the plane, next to the rear toilets.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle headed straight to the back of the plane (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
Moreover, they took up three rows of economy seats on either side of the aisle, even though it was only them with three bodyguards, according to The Daily Mail.
Passengers on the plane were quick to describe the Prince as “slumped down next to the window dressed in jeans, a jacket and with a baseball cap pulled over his face.” Meghan, on the other hand, wore a black beanie and minimal make-up.
The couple, who are set to marry in May, chose the French Riviera for a perfect relaxing holiday by the beach
The French Riviera is the perfect setting to relax by the beach in the sunny weather. (Source: Pinterest)
According to one traveler, the plane took off earlier than planned. The couple was supposedly greeted by armed officers from the French border police. Moreover, they were under the protection of members of France’s elite Service de la Protection, which is the police unit responsible for the protection of foreign dignitaries.
The Daily Mail claims that the heightened security might had something to do with the uncomfortable memories of Princess Diana’s tragic accident in France twenty years ago. It is believed that all Service de la Protection officers were armed with a Beretta M9.
When they were asked if they were requested by the Kensington Palace, one of the officers told the newspaper: “It (heavyweight security) would have been offered and would have been non-negotiable. After what happened to his mother in this country and the issue of terrorism, it would be insisted on even for a private trip such as this.”
Princess Diana died in a car accident in Paris in 1997 (Photo by Newsmakers)
Before the Paris car crash, Princess Diana had also traveled to the French Riveria with her partner Dodi al-Fayed, where they stayed in St. Tropez
Diana died in a car accident on August 31, 1997, in a tunnel by the Seine river, shortly after midnight
Diana’s death was announced in the morning by the then Interior Minister of France, Jean-Pierre Chevenement
By flying on a commercial flight, Harry is following in his brother’s footsteps. In 2014, Prince William also flew in the economy class on a flight from New York to Washington DC when he went to meet Barack Obama at the White House.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle spent their New Year’s holiday in Monaco and Monte Carlo
Here‘s more on their engagement photos.