Prince Harry snubs claim Meghan Markle ‘hated’ New Zealand tour with Māori TV skit for Travalyst: ‘Incredible’
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On Monday, a comedic skit starring the Duke of Sussex was unveiled on a New Zealand TV station to promote his eco-travel campaign, which encourages people to travel sustainably. The five-minute advert, which also premiered on YouTube, is part of Travalyst, an initiative the 37-year-old launched in 2019.
In the clip, Harry is seen jogging through a park before being chased by "rating agents," played by Kiwi actors Rhys Darby, Dave Fane and Rena Owen.
During the skit, Harry is accused of dropping a candy wrapper while on his trip to New Zealand in 2018, which gives him an environmental rental rating of three out of 100. The father of two, wearing a cap and a grey shirt that read "Girl Dad," admitted he didn’t remember, to which Darby replied, "It might have been a confusing time, it was windy."
"I don’t think it was confusing," said Harry. "It was an incredible time. We had an amazing time in New Zealand. It’s beautiful."
Darby later said that he intended to rank another Brit named Harry – Harry Styles.
Harry’s commentary about his 2018 visit to the South Pacific with his wife came shortly after Tina Brown alleged in her book that the Duchess of Sussex "hated" the royal tour.
The former Vanity Fair editor recently wrote "The Palace Papers: Inside the House of Windsor – the Truth and the Turmoil." It explores "the scandals, love affairs, power plays and betrayals" that have rocked the British royals during the last 20 years and features new revelations based on Brown’s access to palace insiders.
Tina Brown previously wrote a book about Princess Diana. (Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty Images)
The bestselling author previously wrote a biography on Harry’s mother titled "The Diana Chronicles," which was published in 2007. For her latest book, Brown said she spoke to more than 120 sources who were close to senior members of the royal family.
Brown alleged that the former "Suits" star "apparently hated every second" of her 2018 tour, which earned the couple glowing reviews around the world.
A former palace employee alleged to Brown that Markle "found the itinerary of engagements ‘pointless.’"
"She didn’t understand why things were set up in that way," the source claimed about the former American actress. "Instead of being excited when thousands of people showed up at the Opera House [in Sydney during the Australian leg of the tour], it was very much like, ‘What’s the purpose? I don’t understand this.’"
Meghan, Duchess of Sussex visits Te Papaiouru Marae for a formal powhiri and luncheon on Oct. 31, 2018, in Rotorua, New Zealand. (Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage)
Brown wrote that "this" referred to "being the representational role of the British monarchy and its traditional agenda, rather than the focus on causes she wanted to spotlight."
Harry’s eco-rating initiative, which will launch in New Zealand, allows resorts and guests to rate each other based on how travelers impact "the business, the community, and the planet" during their trips.
"We created the nonprofit Travalyst to rethink how travel can continue to expand our global understanding, to break down barriers, and to create cultural connections through experiences we otherwise wouldn't have," Harry announced in a press release. "We do this while, at the same time, ensuring local communities truly feel benefit from tourism and safeguarding essential ecosystems."
"In a world where we're tasked with rating so many things, we're now asking: what if your destination rated you?" he continued. "Starting in beautiful Aotearoa, New Zealand, we're launching our first campaign. There is a well-known Māori proverb: Ehara taku toa i te toa takitahi, ēngari he toa takitini (Success is not the work of an individual, but the work of many) – we invite you to be a part of our many."
Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex announces a partnership between Booking.com, SkyScanner, CTrip, TripAdvisor and Visa called 'Travalyst' on Sept. 3, 2019, in Amsterdam, Netherlands. (Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
When Travalyst was launched, Harry was criticized by the tabloids for using private jets.
"I spend 99% of my life traveling the world by commercial," he later clarified about his usage of private jets. "Occasionally there needs to be an opportunity based on a unique circumstance to ensure that my family is safe – it’s generally as simple as that."
A palace spokesperson didn’t immediately respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment concerning Brown’s book. However, a spokesperson previously told Fox News Digital that the palace doesn’t generally comment "on such books." A spokesperson for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex also didn’t immediately reply to Fox News Digital’s request for comment.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s departures from royal duties began in 2020 over what they described as the British media’s intrusions and racist attitudes toward Markle. The family now resides in the coastal city of Montecito, California, with their two children.
Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex attend the Auckland War Memorial Museum for a reception hosted by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Oct. 30, 2018, in Auckland, New Zealand. (Pool/Getty Images)
In the wake of quitting royal duties, they gave an explosive TV interview to Oprah Winfrey in which the couple described painful comments about how dark their son Archie’s skin might be before his birth. The duchess, 40, talked about the intense isolation she felt inside the royal family that led her to contemplate suicide.
Buckingham Palace said the allegations of racism made by the couple were "concerning" and would be addressed privately.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.