Kate Middleton Says She Gets Teased by Prince William’s Family for Stopping to Chat During Walkabouts

Just about every time we see members of the royal family they’re smiling, waving, and shaking hands with crowds of people who have turned out at an event and lined the streets to meet them. But the public wasn’t always able to get up close and personal with the princes and princesses.

Prior to walkabouts, fans could only hope to see the royals in person as they drove past them in a procession. However, in 1970, Queen Elizabeth II changed that rule and these days well-wishers can get handshakes and speak with them. Prince William’s wife Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge seems to be natural when it comes to walkabouts but there is something she does with people in the crowds that her in-laws tease her about.

Kate Middleton
Kate Middleton | Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

Read on to find out what Kate does that William’s family pokes fun at her for.

The other royals tease Kate over walkabout behavior

In the documentary Our Queen at Ninety, Kate said that when she started doing walkabouts the other royals would make fun of her for one thing she did longer than anyone else.

“There’s a real art to walkabouts, everybody teases me in the family that I spend far too long chatting,” the duchess admitted.

Royal fans though love that Kate spends time conversing and that she always shares tidbits about her three children–Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis. Kate is one of the royals who’s unique in that regard as some others are far less friendly with the public.

Kate Middleton
Kate Middleton | Chris Jackson/Getty Images

What Princess Anne has said about shaking hands and chatting

The queen’s only daughter, Princess Anne, handles walkabouts much differently than Kate as she doesn’t even shake hands with anyone or carry on conversations with them.

During the documentary Queen of the World, the Princess Royal stated that she does not shake hands when meeting members of the public.

“The theory was that you couldn’t shake hands with everybody, so don’t start. I kind of stick to that, but I noticed others don’t,” she said.

Anne added that some of the younger royals doing so makes it seem more like a “hand-shaking hands exercise rather than a walkabout.” She also talked about why it’s so difficult for her to hold a conversation with the fans and well-wishers she meets.

“Phones are bad enough, but the iPads–you can’t even see their heads,” she explained. “No idea who you’re talking to. I either don’t bother or just say, ‘Look, if you want to ask me something, I suggest you put that down.’ It is weird. People don’t believe they’ve experienced the event unless they’ve taken a photograph.”

Princess Anne
Princess Anne | Agencia Makro/Getty Images

Who else refuses to shake hands during walkabouts

Princess Anne isn’t the only member of the royal family who refuses to shake hands with the public. Her youngest brother, Prince Edward, doesn’t either.

In an interview with Sky News, the Earl of Wessex echoed his sister’s thoughts about why it’s best not to shake hands.

“I think the only piece of advice I was given was: ‘Don’t treat it like a receiving line.’ So don’t start shaking hands, because once you have shaken one person’s hand you are completely stuck — you have to shake everyone’s hand.”

Read more: Kate Middleton is Related To a U.S. President Just Like Princess Diana and Sarah Ferguson