- Meghan Markle has been closing her own car door lately, and people have mixed responses.
- Some think she’s staying “down to earth” and shunning royal protocol, while others think there’s no official protocol in regards to car doors.
- Etiquette expert Myka Meier told INSIDER that Markle did not break royal protocol by closing her own door.
Since marrying into the royal family in May, almost every move Meghan Markle makes seems to face intense examination from the public.
Markle hit a major royal milestone by attending her first solo engagement on Tuesday, and some people noticed something seemingly out of the ordinary: Markle closed her own car door.
— Emily Andrews (@byEmilyAndrews) September 25, 2018
The response to the video – which was widely shared in a tweet by The Sun’s royal correspondent, Emily Andrews – has been varied.
Some think the duchess is shattering royal stereotypes by staying “down to earth and humble.”
Completely down to earth and humble
— J.G.M. (@MainLineMaven) September 25, 2018
I don't think I've ever seen a member of the Royal Family do that before.
— Kania McKalliah (@KaniaMcKalliah) September 25, 2018
Its refreshing to see the title and being married to a Prince didnt get to her head, she was used to closing her own car door, its second nature. #duchessofsussex
— Debbie (@HabsIn416) September 26, 2018
Others think it’s more a sign that Markle isn’t up to speed on royal protocol, while others – including CNN royal commentator Victoria Arbiter – think it has nothing to do with royal protocol at all.
Current state: Poking my own eyes out after reading Meghan “broke protocol” by shutting her car door. Car door shutting does not fall under protocol!
— Victoria Arbiter (@victoriaarbiter) September 25, 2018
I love that Meghan Markle shutting her own car door is news. Lol That said, it did seem somewhat awkward to watch, knowing that she “shouldn’t have”. pic.twitter.com/gwXDhqUmPR
— Jarrod Brower (@jarrodbrower) September 26, 2018
Could you imagine? The pressure of being scrutinized closely enough that your decision to close a door is considered significant seems like too much for anyone.
— hannah (@hannah_passey) September 26, 2018
It’s also worth noting that Markle previously shut her own door when arriving at the launch event for her charity cookbook, which can be seen below in the video shared by HELLO!’s royal editor, Emily Nash.
WATCH: The Duke and Duchess of Sussex – and Doria Ragland – arrive at the launch event for Together: Our Community Cookbook. Megan is wearing a coat by @SmytheJackets, top by @TUXEBodywear and skirt by her friend @mishanonoo: pic.twitter.com/wyva7Y6SWB
— Emily Nash (@emynash) September 20, 2018
So: Does royal protocol actually prohibit royal women from closing their own doors?
According to Myka Meier, royal etiquette expert of Beaumont Etiquette, there is actually no specific protocol when it comes to closing car doors.
“As for opening and closing a car door, a member of the royal family may choose to do it themselves or not, and there would not be a break in protocol either way,” Meier told INSIDER.
However, there are a few etiquette tips most royal women keep in mind with exiting a car, such as the “swivel and pop” technique Meier teaches in her Duchess Effect course at The Plaza Hotel in New York City.
“While there isn’t a royal protocol on how to get in and out of a car, it’s important for a woman to protect her modesty, especially when wearing a skirt or dress,” Meier said. “We saw Princess Diana use an Anya Hindmarch clutch to cover her cleavage when exiting a car, and the Duchess of Cambridge is careful to keep her knees together when exiting a vehicle.”
So while Markle may take extra precaution to gracefully exit her vehicle, it looks like royal protocol doesn’t police what she chooses to do with the door.
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