11 of the Queen's strangest powers and privileges

The Queen has access to some amazing perks (775-room palace anyone?), but you’ll be baffled by these ones.

Her Majesty has some weird and wonderful powers. Photo: Getty Images
Her Majesty has some weird and wonderful powers. Photo: Getty Images

While the Monarch no longer holds "serious" power (that’s what the British government is for), her authority grants her these 11 incredible privileges:

1. She doesn’t need a passport to travel.
The Queen can cross borders without a care in the world. All United Kingdom (UK) passports are issued in the her name - so while she isn't required to own one, everyone else in the royal family is.

She can fly around the world in her private jet if she wanted to, no passport needed. Photo: Getty Images
She can fly around the world in her private jet if she wanted to, no passport needed. Photo: Getty Images

2.She can drive without a license.
The Queen is the only person in the UK who doesn’t legally need a license number or number plate. Although she has a driver, the Monarch isn’t afraid to get behind the wheel. In 1998, she surprised King Abdullah of Jordan by driving him around in Balmoral. Isn’t she spontaneous!

The Queen's official birthday is April 21, she just turned 90. Photo: Getty Images
The Queen's official birthday is April 21, she just turned 90. Photo: Getty Images

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3. She celebrates two birthdays.
She’s so important she celebrates her birthday twice a year - her official birthday on April 21 and again in early June.

4. She hasher own ATM.
The Queen needn’t leave her quarters to pull out some pounds - she’s got her own cash machine installed in Buckingham Palace’s basement.

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5. She owns all the swans in the River Thames.
Thinking of snatching a swan from the English river? Think again. Although her crown allows her to “exercises her ownership on certain stretches of the Thames and its surrounding tributaries,” according to the official website of the Royal Family, she pretty much owns all unmarked swans swimming in the river. They’re given regular health checks by the Queen’s Swan Warden.

6. She owns all the all the sturgeons, whales, and dolphins in British waters.
Apart from owning more than 30 Pembroke Welsh Corgis in her lifetime and all the swans above water in the River Thames, the Queen also owns all the sturgeons, whales and dolphins in Britain’s waters. According to TIME, this power dates back to 1324, during the reign of King Edward II.

Queen Elizabeth II is the longest reigning monarch. Photo: Getty Images
Queen Elizabeth II is the longest reigning monarch. Photo: Getty Images

7. She doesn't have to pay tax (but she does).
But she does anyway - the Queen has been chipping in her share of taxes since 1992, even though she isn’t required to pay a cent.

8. She is immune from any prosecution.
The Queen can never be arrested. In fact, the whole royal family is exempt from Freedom Of Information requests.

She can never get arrested. Photo: Getty Images
She can never get arrested. Photo: Getty Images

9. She has her own poet.
The honorary position is given to a poet of national significance - currently Carol Ann Duffy.

10. She has the power to form and fire governments.
As the Head of State in Australia, the Queen has certain powers over the government. Her representative, the Governor General, can fire the Prime Minister given the command. This has only ever occurred once in 1975 in response to a government shutdown.

11. She is the head of anentire religion.
The royal is also the head of the Church of England. She is never allowed to convert and if she does, she can be removed from the throne.

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