We’re not going to lie to you, it’s kind of hard to summon much enthusiasm for the holiday season this year. All we want to do is curl up and sleep our way through it. Of course, the royal family can always serve as a helpful distraction during these trying times. As it turns out, this family engages in some of the most absurd spending that we have ever seen.
In fact, once we learned more about the Queen’s shopping habits during the holiday season, we found ourselves wishing that we were a part of her yearly shopping list.
Her shopping list is about as long as a roll of toilet paper, too. She shops for over 600 people a year, dropping a significant amount on each gift. On her list includes 620 staffers and family members. As The Sun reports, she spends up to $40,000 per year on all of the items.
So how does this woman possibly find the time to select personalized gifts for all of these people?
It probably won’t shock you to learn that the queen does not do all of the shopping on her own. “The presents are usually a book token, or a small piece of china from the palace gift shop, and most years she gives them a small Christmas pudding in a box as well,” reports a royal aide, according to The Sun. The recipients of the presents are expected to behave formally as well.
“Here they line up to receive a wrapped gift from the Queen, and she says a few words to each of them— usually something like, ‘Thank you so much for all your help during the year,’ followed by ‘Happy Christmas,’” the aide continued. The gift-giving process is directed by the Deputy Master of the Household. Everyone gathers in one of Buckingham Palace’s grand staterooms to receive their presents.
Some might be wondering what happens if the staffers are not on hand to receive their gift in person. No worries here, as the Queen still takes care of these staffers. “If the staff are not able to be there on the specified days—they may be a ghillie working at Balmoral for example—the Household makes sure they are sent to them, along with a card from HM,” the aide says. Talk about opulence!SKM: below-content placeholder