Queen Elizabeth is possibly the most travelled monarch in history. Since her coronation in 1953, she has visited more than 120 countries.
With all that travelling, we wonder what she can’t leave home without. Here are 10 things the queen always takes with her on her overseas trips, according to Reader’s Digest. Join us as we peek into her bags. It may surprise you.
1. Toilet paper:
When hosts fuss about the loo when they are expecting a royal visit, they need not worry too much about whether to buy double-ply or treble-ply toilet paper, as she brings her own stash. It’s likely to be Andrex, as the company website boasts of it having had the royal warrant since 1978.
2. Jet lag aids:
Travelling around the world on a regular basis takes its toll, and we all know about jet lag. So how does the queen manage her gruelling schedule on a royal tour? She takes homeopathic jet lag medication as well as barley sugar sweets, which are said to help with sugar levels for meal times at her new destination. That’s something to try next time we go across multiple time zones.
The queen travels with her personal doctor who brings along emergency medication. This includes blood that matches the queen and Prince Philip’s blood types, especially when visiting countries where blood might not be readily available.
4. A black outfit:
The story goes that when her father King George VI died in 1952, she was away in Kenya and had not taken anything black that was suitable for mourning. When her plane landed back in Britain, she had to wait for a black outfit before she could disembark. Since then, all the royal family have to carry a black outfit whenever they go abroad in case tragedy strikes.
5. A lot of clothes:
Many of us pack too much when going abroad, but maybe not as much as the queen who carries around 30 outfits with her every time. She usually has a busy schedule so it is not really surprising – but that’s a lot of ironing to take out those annoying creases. However, her outfits are all packed in protective sleeves to keep them in pristine condition.
6. Afternoon tea:
The queen cannot miss her afternoon tea, so her staff pack her favourite tea and scones with clotted cream and Dundee cake.
7. Water and more food:
The queen cannot take any chances with getting food poisoning so bottled water is packed for her and if there is any doubt as to the safety of food at her destination, food is also packed.
8. A hot-water bottle:
The queen still likes her home comforts while on tour and there is nothing better than a hot-water bottle warming up the cold sheets.
9. Her favourite suitcases:
Queen Elizabeth bought a set of Globe-Trotter suitcases for her honeymoon with Prince Philip in 1947, and she has been using the same suitcases ever since. They must be very sturdy. Rumour has it, the suitcases are a favourite of 007 – as they have been used in some James Bond movies.
10. Colour-coded luggage tags:
The queen does not need to write her name and address on the luggage tags while travelling abroad, she just writes: The Queen. Each royal has their own colour for luggage tags. The Queen and Kate Middleton use yellow, Prince William and Charles use red, Princess Anne opts for green and Prince George, blue.
And what does the queen never travel with? A passport. She doesn’t need one.
Note: This story was originally published on SCMP and has been republished on this website.