Here’s Why Meghan Markle’s American Fans Don’t Have To Curtsy

Meghan Markle, now formally known as the Duchess of Sussex, may now be used to being bowed or curtsied to by British fans. But there is one thing that the former “Suits” actress can’t expect from her American fans — to bow or curtsy to her like the British do.

Myka Meier, founder of Beaumont Etiquette, says it’s mainly because of the difference in etiquette protocol between the two countries. “In American culture, we do not curtsy or bow as a sign of respect, and therefore you would not do so if you came upon a royal in the United States,” Meier explained.

She cited what transpired when Prince William and Kate visited the U.S. in 2014 as an example. Back then, President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama offered a handshake to welcome the royal couple. “It would be the same if you were to greet the Duchess of Sussex in NYC,” Meier said.

However, just because U.S. fans can get away with a handshake does not mean that they could approach Meghan Markle like they could any other Hollywood A-list actress. As she is the Duchess of Sussex, there is a protocol to follow when meeting members of the British royal family, including her.

According to Meier, one can’t just approach Meghan directly. “The correct protocol when in the presence of a royal is to never approach, and instead wait to be introduced,” she explained.

Even with selfies becoming very popular these days, fans should also not just take out their smartphones and snap up photos to document their encounter with royalty. Instead, Meier advised that “to show respect, you should only take a photo of a royal when they pose for it.”

Things get even stricter when one is in the presence of the monarch, Queen Elizabeth II herself. For instance, if one is lucky enough to dine with the Queen, one should take cues from Her Majesty and only start eating after she takes her first bite. And when she is done eating, one should stop as well, whether full or not.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, and Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, attend a reception to mark the fiftieth anniversary of the investiture of the Prince of Wales at Buckingham Palace. Dominic Lipinski - WPA Pool/Getty Images

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