Meghan Markle will join the Queen and other senior members of the royal family for Christmas at Sandringham, Kensington Palace has confirmed.
In a statement about the royals' plans for the festive season, Kensington Palace said: "You can expect to see the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince Harry and Ms. Markle at Sandringham on Christmas Day."
The event will undoubtedly attract a large number of well-wishers who will wait to catch a glimpse of the royal party as they walk from Sandringham House to the nearby St Mary Magdalene Church for the traditional Christmas Day church service, and make the return journey after the service wraps up.
This is BIG news.
While spending the festive season with your future in-laws mightn't seem out of the ordinary, in the royal realm it's a total break in tradition.
The royal family tend to follow an unwritten 'no ring, no bring' policy -- in other words, unmarried partners are barred from attending Christmas. Of course, when Kate Middleton became engaged to Prince William in 2010, she spent that Christmas with her parents in Berkshire.
The festive event will be the first of many for the former Suits actress, who will wed Harry sometime in May in St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle.
According to royal commentator Richard Fitzwilliams, Christmas at Sandringham will serve as the ultimate training for Meghan as she prepares to become a full-time royal.
"Now they are engaged and she will shortly be a senior member of the royal family, it is pivotal that she feels an integral part of it as soon as possible," he revealed.
"Kate and the younger members will help her through the strict protocol of the royal festive celebrations which take place over three days and which can be daunting."
An insider recently revealed to Closer Magazine that Duchess Catherine has stepped up to help her future sister-in-law and show her the ropes.
"Kate was a bag of nerves the first time she did Christmas with the royals, so she knows exactly how daunting it must be for Meghan," the source said.
Christmas with the royals is a serious production and every item on the agenda runs to a perfectly-time schedule.
The newly-engaged couple are set for a jam-packed calendar of festive celebrations kicking things off with a black-tie dinner on Christmas Eve with key royal family members including Prince Charles, Duchess Camilla, The Queen, Prince Philip, Prince William and Duchess Catherine.
WATCH: Meghan and Harry make at their first royal engagement together. Post continues...
Cheap and cheerful presents are swapped on Christmas Eve - with a focus on humorous gifts instead of material. If Meghan is racking her brain as to what to get The Queen, Duchess Catherine has previously revealed she made her chutney!
Christmas morning starts with a full English breakfast before heading to church for a morning service at St Mary Magdalene, followed by a 50-minute lunch, before gathering around the TV to watch The Queen's Christmas message at 3pm, and a round of pheasant shooting on Boxing Day -- it's certainly worlds away from eating leftover ham and watching the cricket like most Aussies do on the 26th!
But even the royals indulge in the silly season and they reportedly enjoy popping open bespoke Christmas crackers (everyone rocks the colourful hats except for Her Majesty), party games and charades.
It's believed Meghan and Harry will head to America after Christmas in the UK to spend time with Meghan's mother Doria Ragland.
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