'Harry was a people's prince, now he's become preachy, hypocritical and detached'

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have reportedly travelled by private jet more than four times this summer.

The 34-year-old Duke and 38-year-old Duchess of Sussex along with their three-month-old son Archie, have holidayed in Ibiza and at Sir Elton John’s £15 million villa in Nice in the south of France.

Their choices have caused controversy as the couple have been vocal about environmental issues.

Speaking on Yahoo UK’s ‘The Royal Box,’ The Sun’s former royal editor Duncan Larcombe says Harry and Meghan are “going from one PR disaster to another.

“A couple that have put themselves out there to lecture us all on needing to do our little bit to save the environment are going on holiday on private jets all summer. Do they think that we’re all mad? Do they think that the public won’t see them as aloof from them?”

The Duke of Sussex at a garden party to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Commonwealth. Photo: Getty Images

The duke is also said to have flown on a private plane to the Google summit in Sicily earlier this month, where he gave a speech about climate change, while barefoot.

Larcombe adds: “He [Harry] was a people’s prince, he’s now become some hypocritical, preachy, detached, slightly confused young prince and he’ll lose his popularity because of that and I think that’s a tragedy because I think he’s a great guy.”

The Sunday Times royal correspondent Roya Nikkhah says that while the late Duke of Westminster loaned the princes his private jet for trips abroad in the past “most of the time, most members of the Royal Family take commercial flights for their holidays.”

Nikkhah adds: “I think at the heart of it here is, how is it going to be perceived?

“Every individual member of the Royal Family is entitled to travel how they want. I think if you are then going to make it one of your causes, that you feel that you need to be very careful about your carbon footprint, you’ve got to be very careful. Practising the message you preach is really, really important.

Meghan and Harry in Tonga last year. Photo: Getty Images

“You risk distracting from the work that you’re trying to do.”

Royal commentator Omid Scobie says that circumstances for Harry have changed now that he has a child.

“I think the difference between Harry is when he could jump on an EasyJet with mates, now he has a child and how do you protect that child? I think that maybe some of this is just figuring that out. How can they travel, have their own life, but also do things the right way?”

Sir Elton John defended Harry and Meghan for travelling by private jet to his mansion in France, writing in an Instagram post: “To support Prince Harry’s commitment to the environment, we ensured their flight was carbon neutral, by making the appropriate contribution to Carbon Footprint™.”

US chat show host Ellen Degeneres, singer Pink and Argentine polo player Nachos Figueras have also joined Sir Elton John in support of the royal couple.

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