Locals allegedly don’t have to worry about greeting Markle or Prince Harry in any specific way. “It’s very much how they want things done,” the source continues to VF. “There is no protocol that says you have to bow or curtsy when you meet them; it’s really up to the individual.”
Why the couple is approaching their tour like this is unclear. Some sources say it’s to get their popularity back on track after a few weeks of bad press. (Markle and Prince Harry garnered criticism in August for chartering a private jet on holiday despite their environmental activism. Harry later addressed the controversy, saying he mostly flies commercial but sometimes has to make exceptions—and he always offsets his CO2 in those cases.)
Regardless, Markle and Prince Harry’s move to be more informal in southern Africa is confusing some officials. “I have no idea how to speak to them,” Jacky Poking, secretary of the Bo-Kaap Civic and Ratepayers Association, said to South Africa’s Sunday Times. “We haven’t received any official brief on etiquette. I think that’s because the Sussexes want to keep it informal. I don’t even know how to greet them.”
If these reports hold water, I have a feeling Meghan and Harry don’t really care how anyone greets them. I think Poking can rest easy.