10 Jan, 2023 @ 20:45
1 min read

Spain’s King Felipe and Queen Letizia top the list for the most active European royals

Letizia and Felipe
Image Casa Real

SPAIN’S royal family has plenty of detractors, in particular in areas that have historically wanted independence such as Catalunya and the Basque Country. But figures suggest that Spaniards are actually getting a lot of bang for their buck when it comes to King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia.

According to an analysis carried out by British website UFO No More, the Spanish royals racked up the most days of official acts in public among all of their European counterparts. 

King Felipe, for example, spent 194 days out of the office. That’s compared to King Philippe of Belgium, who managed 150 days and came in second on the ranking. 

Queen Letizia, meanwhile, managed 123 days, coming seventh on the list and above Sophie, Countess of Wessex, who totalled 119.

In total, the Spanish royal family worked in public during 219 days in 2022, which is 60% of the year, according to figures cited by Spanish daily El Español. 

It should be pointed out that the article focuses exclusively on the days when the Spanish royals appeared at events, and there are many other days when they are dedicated to tasks out of the public eye.

The figures also revealed that 2022 was a busy year for the former queen, Sofia, Felipe’s mother. She attended 25 acts in 2022 compared to the 21 the year before. 

Not on the list, of course, is her husband, the disgraced former king Juan Carlos I. He has been living in self-imposed exile in Abu Dhabi since 2020 after a series of scandals.

One of his rare appearances last year was at the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II, something that caused a storm of controversy in Spain at the time given Felipe’s efforts to distance the royal family from his father’s toxic legacy.

Read more:

Nephew of Spain’s King Felipe denies press reports of involvement in nightclub brawl

How Spain’s Royal Family celebrates Christmas

Simon Hunter

Simon Hunter has been living in Madrid since the year 2000 and has worked as a journalist and translator practically since he arrived. For 16 years he was at the English Edition of Spanish daily EL PAÍS, editing the site from 2014 to 2022, and is currently one of the Spain reporters at The Times. He is also a voice actor, and can be heard telling passengers to "mind the gap" on Spain's AVLO high-speed trains.

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