Queen Elizabeth II and her family members all adhere to a strict set of guidelines and traditions. And some of them are quite bizarre.
Queen Elizabeth II and her family members all adhere to a strict set of guidelines and traditions. And some of them are quite bizarre.

Royal family’s most bizarre rules

FORGET the Griswolds, the Simpsons and the Addams family, it's the British royal family who are the weirdest of the bunch.

Queen Elizabeth II and her family members all adhere to a strict set of guidelines and traditions. And some of them are quite bizarre.

NO PRAWNS OR OYSTERS

There are 10 chefs at Buckingham Palace but there are a few ingredients they're banned from using. For example, the royal family has a self-imposed ban on shellfish because they don't want to run the risk of getting food poisoning.

The Queen also has a no garlic rule according to former Buckingham Palace chef, Darren McGrady.

"We could never serve garlic to the queen but Prince Philip loved it," he told the Daily Mail.

"If we were at Balmoral and she was out, we'd slather his steak in garlic. But when she was at the table, there was no garlic at all.

"She was very Victorian and believed when she was brought up that you don't eat garlic - because if you were holding an audience the next day, you didn't want to be breathing garlic. It was seen as anti-social."

 

Former US President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle flanked by Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, in 2011.
Former US President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle flanked by Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, in 2011.

 

DINING WITH THE QUEEN

Not many of us will ever get the opportunity to eat a meal with the Queen, but on the off chance you do, here's what you need to know: You are not allowed to continue eating after the Queen has finished her meal.

This rule has been in place for quite a while and caused a few problems during Queen Victoria's reign from 1837 to 1876.

Queen Victoria, to put it delicately, had a healthy appetite and would demolish her meals in a short amount of time which meant her guests had to stop eating before they'd had a chance to finish their food.

Queen Elizabeth II is much more considerate though, according to the BBC. The 92-year-old reportedly leaves a small bit of food on her plate in order to give her guests an appropriate amount of time to finish their meals.

GRIM OUTFIT

Whenever members of the royal family travel overseas, there's one outfit they must always pack.

It's compulsory for them to pack a black outfit in case a member of the royal family dies while they're overseas.

Queen Elizabeth II failed to adhere to this rule back in 1952 when she was visiting Kenya with Prince Philip. After King George VI's sudden death, Queen Elizabeth II had to wait on the plane after landing in London until an appropriate mourning outfit was delivered to her on board.

 

Queen Mary with the Queen Mother and Queen Elizabeth II in 1952 attending the funeral of King George VI.
Queen Mary with the Queen Mother and Queen Elizabeth II in 1952 attending the funeral of King George VI.

 

CAN I HAVE YOUR AUTOGRAPH?

If you ever bump into one of the royals and don't have a camera handy for a selfie, you might be tempted to ask for an autograph. But be prepared to have your request denied.

As a safety measure, members of the royal family aren't allowed to sign autographs because it increases the chances of their signatures being forged.

Prince Charles usually replies, "Sorry, they don't allow me to do that" when people ask him for an autograph, but he did break royal protocol once back in 2010.

When meeting with people in Cornwall whose houses were damaged in floods, one resident asked Prince Charles for his autograph.

"Charles astounded his protection squad and asked them to find him some paper, which they did," a photographer told the Daily Mail.

"Then with a detective holding a file for him to rest on, he whipped out his Royal Parker pen and scribbled, 'Charles 2010'.

"They've gone from the depths of despair losing all of their belongings just before Christmas to having a Royal visit and obtaining an unheard of souvenir."

 

Prince Philip ignores a fan’s request for an autograph in Wagga Wagga.
Prince Philip ignores a fan’s request for an autograph in Wagga Wagga.

 

LATE NIGHTS

As revealed by The Sun, it's frowned upon for members of the royal family who are staying with the Queen to go to bed before she does.

Only when Queen Elizabeth II calls it a night can everyone else drag themselves off to bed as well.

One of the Queen's private secretaries, Sir William Heseltine, said there was one member of the royal family member who refused to abide by the tradition.

"For Diana the long royal evenings were agony," he told The Sun.

"There'd be an hour or so in the sitting room of everyone sitting around making conversation, and nobody felt it right to go to bed before the Queen did.

"And Diana was driven to such extremes that she'd excuse herself and go to bed, which was thought to be rather bad form, going to bed before the Queen."

 

Princess Diana at the Braemar Games September 1982 in Scotland with Prince Charles, Queen Elizabeth and The Queen Mother.
Princess Diana at the Braemar Games September 1982 in Scotland with Prince Charles, Queen Elizabeth and The Queen Mother.

 

FLYING WITH FAMILY

There's an unofficial rule that two heirs to the throne aren't allowed to fly together.

To protect the royal lineage, heirs are meant to travel separately just in case there's a horrible plane crash.

But this unofficial rule has been relaxed in the past five years. Prince William, who is second in line for the throne, has travelled on the same flight on many occasions with his son, Prince George, who is third in line for the throne.

The Queen has the final say on whether two heirs are allowed to fly together.

 

William and Kate, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, along with their children Prince George and Princess Charlotte step off the plane as they arrive in Victoria, British Columbia.
William and Kate, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, along with their children Prince George and Princess Charlotte step off the plane as they arrive in Victoria, British Columbia.

 

OTHER FUN FACTS:

• The Queen is the only person in the UK who is allowed to drive without a license

• Tradition dictates that Prince Philip must walk two steps behind the Queen to represent their rankings in the royal family. The same goes for Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge.

• The Queen gives subtle hints to her staff using her handbag. If she places it on a chair, as she did when meeting the Australian High Commissioner earlier this year, it means she's happy to have a long chat with her guest. If the Queen puts her handbag on a table it means she's happy to chat to her guest for five minutes. But if it's on the floor, it's a signal that she wants her staff to interfere and end the conversation