Among many privileges she enjoys, Queen Elizabeth II does not need a British passport to travel. Merriam-Webster defines a Passport as ‘a formal document issued by an authorized official of a country to one of its citizens that is usually necessary for exit from and reentry into the country, that allows the citizen to travel in a foreign country in accordance with visa requirements, and that requests protection for the citizen while abroad‘. So why does the Queen not need one?
The first page of a British passport reads (Emphasis is my own);
‘Her Britannic Majesty’s Secretary of State requests and requires in the name of Her Majesty all those whom it may concern to allow the bearer to pass freely without let or hindrance and to afford the bearer such assistance and protection as may be necessary.’
Since the passport is issued in the name of Her Majesty, it makes it redundant for The Queen have one. This very logic extends to every document that is issued ‘in the name of Her Majesty‘, including a Driver’s License! Since she is legally not required to pay taxes, I assume she does not have a National Insurance number (equivalent of Social security number) either?! So, no passport, no driver’s license, no national insurance number. Basically, The Queen does not need to prove her identity.
Note, that this privilege does not extend to other members of the Royal family and they must all have a valid passport when traveling outside of the UK.
Outside of diplomatic courtesy, I wonder if a foreign government can demand any form of identification from the queen? Then again, don’t think she bothers to check in with an immigration officer upon arrival 😉 . More importantly, she will never know the joy of a new country stamp on a passport, her loss.
Meanwhile, I am a Canadian resident with an Indian passport. Yeah..TGIF folks – cheers!