To mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited three Caribbean nations last month. The tour was met with protests, demands for reparations for slavery, and Jamaica’s plans to become a republic intensified.
Sophie and Edward’s Caribbean tour shouldn’t end up in a PR disaster, experts told the Sunday Times. Former British Vogue editor Alexandra Shulman advised the couple to “dress down” during their trip, avoiding military uniforms and Savile Row suits.
She said: “Not because it might remind people of colonial days.”.
“But because it looks anachronistic to anyone who didn’t grow up in an era of white gloves, pomp, and military bands.”
On William and Kate’s tour, they visited Belize, Jamaica and the Bahamas.
In contrast, the Wessexes will visit Antigua and Barbuda, Grenada, St Lucia, and St Vincent and the Grenadines on their tour, which begins on Friday.
Author and commentator Sir Trevor Phillips, whose family comes from Guyana, said that the islands the Wessexes are visiting “are more traditional than larger nations like Jamaica”.
Sophie and Edward should bring gifts that symbolise the affection between the UK and the islands, according to Sir Trevor.
The couple could bring “something from Somerset” as a reminder that Sir Viv Richards, the acclaimed West Indies captain, who was born on the island, played for the county.
According to Paul Charles, a travel advisor to governments and brands, small islands rely heavily on tourism, so the Wessexes should promote the islands they visit as holiday destinations.
Instead of using the government’s new “Brexit jet” as William and Kate did, he said the Wessexes should “arrive on BA, leave on Virgin Atlantic, and use local airlines to travel between islands”.
“They should stay in local hotels, eat roti at local restaurants, and talk about them warmly.”