Did Meghan And Harry Ditch First Class And Fly Economy?

Each week, we apply our smell test to the new batch of royal rumours to tell you what’s true and what stinks worse than rotten kippers.

Prince Harry and Meghan attend the wedding of Charlie Van Straubenzee.

Prince Harry and Meghan attend the wedding of Charlie Van Straubenzee. Photo, Samir Hussein//WireImage.

The rumour: Meghan and Harry fly economy… and they don’t mind sitting near the loo

Where you heard it: Express
The report: Yes, they are royals, but apparently the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are also “just like us” — at least when it comes to their travel habits: “The down-to-earth couple surprised onlookers on their British Airways flight to Nice not long before their wedding, with Meghan sat in the middle seat and Harry sporting a baseball cap.” The Express story also reveals that the happy couple “opted to sit near the toilets.”
Meghan Markle Attends Society Wedding In Club Monaco Dress — And Gold-Plated SunglassesMeghan Markle Attends Society Wedding In Club Monaco Dress — And Gold-Plated Sunglasses
The smell test: The notion that they would actually choose toilet proximity smells like a whole load of airplane crap. The headline would be better expressed as: “One time Harry and Meghan flew economy, but generally they fly in first class or on private planes. The end.”

The rumour: The royals banned Meghan from running the London marathon

Where you heard it: Radar
The report: The annual race doesn’t take place until next spring, but apparently it has already caused friction behind the gates of Buckingham where “fitness freak” Meghan thought her participation in the marathon would be a “no-brainer” and an easy fundraising win. Not so in the opinion of royal advisers who (per Radar’s source) claim the duchess will not be permitted to run based on “security concerns.” But, Radar writes, the real reason for the nix is that the image of a duchess sweating in running gear would be “unseemly.” Radar’s source claims that MM is well aware that the whole security story is “rubbish.” Says a second “close” source: “Meghan values her freedom above everything else, and she was hoping being able to participate in the London marathon would show the world she is her own woman who does not have to take orders from the royal family.”
The smell test: Suspicious source notwithstanding, we’re pretty sure that having the word “duchess” in front of your name means that taking orders from the royal family is exactly what you have to do, and that MM was well aware of that before she said “I do.” Which is not to say there isn’t room for rebellion, but maybe there’s something to be said for keeping the peace — at least in these early days.

The rumour: Beyoncé got the September Vogue cover because Meghan Markle said no

Where you heard it: Naughty Gossip
The report: We’ve heard a lot about Beyoncé’s monumental Vogue cover over the past few days: How she had an unprecedented  level of input, how it was the first time Vogue used an African-American photographer to shoot the cover image. But according to Naughty Gossip (clearly a very serious publication): “Anna Wintour really, really wanted Meghan.” NG’s unnamed insider notes that the notoriously prickly editor-in-chief offered to fly anywhere and even oversee the story/photo herself.
Subscribe To Our Newsletters — And Get All Our Royal Coverage Straight To Your InboxSubscribe To Our Newsletters — And Get All Our Royal Coverage Straight To Your Inbox
The smell test: Given the source, it is almost certain that this story stinks like the royal stables. Still, it’s interesting to contemplate. The September Vogue cover is arguably the most-important piece of magazine real estate in the world. And of course Wintour would want a slam dunk (particularly given all the speculation that her time at the top of the magazine’s masthead may be coming to an end). Is Meghan Markle a bigger cover sell than Beyoncé? Markle was the most-Googled actor of 2017, but that has to partly be because she wasn’t a household name at the time. If she is the bigger get, isn’t it logical that Wintour would have made a play for her? It’s not an impossible dream. Kate Middleton appeared on the cover of British Vogue a couple of years ago. So this story may contain a nugget of truth, in spite of itself.

The rumour: Meghan will have a secret meeting with her dad in the U.S.

Where you heard it: The Mirror
The report: After enduring weeks of humiliating headlines and unsanctioned media appearances, Markle may finally be ready to meet up with her dad. So says The Mirror’s source, who claims the Markle family patriarch is currently “keeping two dates free at the end of the month” with the plan of flying from his home in Mexico to L.A. to sit down with his duchess daughter. Per the source: “The location and exact dates will be top secret for both their sakes. It is a very sensitive time for them, but the intent seems to be to heal the rift.”
The smell test: It appears that MM’s older sister, Samantha, has already taken a good whiff of this story and she says it stinks: “There is no meeting planned, that is PR spin. The PR machines can stop trying to make out she’s making an effort — she is not.” Of course the duchess’ half-sister is hardly a reliable source. Still, it’s hard to imagine that anyone (royal spin doctors included) would believe that a secret visit with the internet’s most reliable blabbermouth would stay secret for long.