Call it the domino effect of Megxit, now Australian taxpayers are making noises about not wanting to pay for royal visits when the “tourists” descend on their shores.
In the past, the country has chipped in to cover the costs of royal excursions, some of which can go as high as millions of pounds.
But now, on the heels of Canada and the US refusing to foot the security tab for royal tourists Harry and Meghan, Australia seems to be following suit by tightening the purse strings.
Are public attitudes toward the royals changing?
A poll done by honey.nine showed a majority of Australian taxpayers are opposed to subsidizing royal tours. Two-thirds of the 1,168 respondents did not think the taxpayer should have to pay a part of royal trips.
The Land Down Under has been a veritable royal playground over the years, with the Queen visiting 15 times and counting. Harry and Meghan visited in 2018.
The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet reported that the couple’s tour to Australia cost around £200,000, while William and Kate’s 2014 jaunt was more expensive
In conclusion, the national director of the Australian Republican Movement, Sandy Biar, said that the Royal Family is welcome to visit but they must pay their own way on state visits.
Speaking to the Express.co.uk he said, “In terms of the slated upcoming visit from William and Kate to Australia……we have been calling for William and Kate to pay their own way.”
Is Australia the latest to remove the freeloading welcome mat for the royals?
“If they are genuine about wanting to come here to help people who have suffered through bushfires and the natural disasters in Australia recently, “ he added, “then they shouldn’t be putting a burden on taxpayers on that trip.”
Then he put away the nice talk and got blunt, “We are talking about the grandchildren of our head of state. So, we wouldn’t pay for the grandchildren of another country’s head of state to come and visit and do some sightseeing and we shouldn’t pay for the grandchildren of our current head of state to do those kinds of visits either.
“Those costs should be entirely borne by the Royal Family. They shouldn’t be a cost that is pushed onto the Australian taxpayer.”
Looks like it’s game on for the royals, the ball is in their court, do they get out the wallet or default to a staycation instead?
But, in even more startling news, the Australian Republican Movement is campaigning for a referendum to replace the Queen as head of state with an elected President.