The Clever Reason Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Waited So Long to Release Their Christmas Card

The moment we’ve been waiting for all season is finally here! Prince Harry and Meghan Markle just released their annual family Christmas card, though they did it in a very surprising, very unique way. And royal fans are pointing out that the timing of the card’s release was no accident.

In fact, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex sent the world a huge message without saying a single word.

Prince Harry, Meghan Markle and Archie
Prince Harry, Meghan Markle, and Archie | Toby Melville – Pool/Getty Images

The Sussex Christmas card was released through one of their charities

Instead of posting the card image to their official Instagram account, which is how Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have been sharing most of their photos from major life events, the couple chose to share it via The Queen’s Commonwealth Trust, an organization which “champions, funds and connects young leaders who are working hard to change the world.”

Using the charity association to promote the card also helped draw attention to the charity, which is another way of proving their dedication to their work. It was, in a word, brilliant.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s timing was quite intentional

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge shared their 2019 Christmas card via Twitter earlier in the month, which naturally led to speculation about Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s card for this year. Multiple news outlets reported that the couple was planning to break royal protocol by including Meghan’s mother Doria Ragland in the photo, which turned out to be untrue.

The photo instead shows a beaming Prince Harry and Meghan Markle behind a close up of Archie Harrison, who is as adorable as ever. The photo was shared at 5:38 p.m. Dec. 23 in the United States, which is 10:38 p.m. in London. According to some sources, that means the British papers would not be able to run the photo.

Mail on Sunday editor Katie Hind worded it this way on Twitter, “It appears Harry and Meghan conveniently released their Christmas card photo so it would miss the deadlines of the UK’s Christmas Eve newspapers. There are no papers on Christmas Day so it won’t feature in those either. Can’t quite find the adjective for this…”

Meghan Markle’s friend snapped the photo

Also, instead of using a professional photographer for the image as they did with previous life events, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle had Meghan’s friend snap the photo. This means they own the rights to the image, and it can’t be reused without their permission.

All of this makes total sense when you consider the Sussex family’s tense relationship with the press. Earlier this year, Prince Harry announced his intention to sue certain tabloid news outlets for their unfair treatment and outright harassment of his wife.

As some fans pointed out, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex decided to release their Christmas card this way to avoid letting the media profit off their images. It may have angered some members of the press, but either way, royal followers are absolutely gushing over the adorable photo of the family.