Prince Andrew's Wildly Lavish Lifestyle: Expensive Watches And Luxury Vacations

If you were to go up to someone and ask who the black sheep of the royal family is, they might hesitate — as Prince Harry has certainly given the firm a lot to contend with as he's left their watchful eye. But the overwhelming answer would likely be Prince Andrew. The late Queen Elizabeth II's third child, and long-rumored favorite, Andrew was always seen as a bit of a playboy who didn't have nearly as much royal responsibility as his older brother, King Charles III. Nowhere near the throne and yet the child of the then-monarch, Andrew was in a unique position. He could enjoy the splendors of royal life without the pressure of one day assuming the crown. As such, he quickly gained the reputation of the prince who lived life in the luxurious fast lane, until it all came crashing down.

Andrew was tied to now-dead luxury tycoon Jeffrey Epstein all the way back in the early 2000s, but his connection to the convicted sex offender wasn't brought to the surface in a consequential way until 2019. Sitting down with the BBC for an in-depth interview, Andrew vehemently denied any wrongdoing and defended his relationship with Epstein. Still, the fallout from the connection and his settlement with accuser Virginia Giuffre forced Andrew out of the spotlight and resulted in him being stripped of royal duties and his military titles — he still, surprisingly, lives an insanely lavish lifestyle despite it all.

Where does Andrew get his money from exactly?

There have always been questions surrounding the source of Prince Andrew's money, as he has lived lavishly for decades. As any royal watcher can tell you, the finances surrounding the family are not easily understood, so we're going to break it down. When Andrew was still a senior member of the royal family working on behalf of the crown, he was reportedly receiving a salary to the tune of about $300,000 — not too bad for showing up at fundraising events and cutting ribbons. Given that he was also a member of the armed forces, Andrew most likely receives a pension of about $24,000. A total of $324,000 should be more than enough to live comfortably, but the prince has a penchant for luxury that this income likely could not afford.

Of course, when Andrew's BBC interview aired and he was later forced to step down from royal life, it was suggested that his working salary was halted. There, of course, had been rumors that Queen Elizabeth II was giving Andrew money from her private income, but that was never confirmed. Meanwhile, Andrew's source of income has been connected to personal loans. Bloomberg News claimed that he paid off a personal loan taken out for $1.8 million in December 2017, suggesting that he was borrowing money to support his lavish lifestyle.

Andrew reportedly spends upwards of $300,000 per month

Given that Prince Andrew seemingly made just over $300,000 a year when he was a working royal, you'd think that his monthly spending would reflect such an income — which would certainly be enough for just about anyone to enjoy life's finer things. But, Andrew reportedly spends about $300,000 per month, dishing out an entire year's worth of income in just a matter of weeks. So how does he do it? And to what extent, why?

Andrew's lifestyle has often caused people to raise their eyebrows, as he has enjoyed splendors that the rest of the royal family tend to avoid. Lavish vacations, private jets, the finest things money can offer — Andrew has spared no expense. Queen Elizabeth II, as aforementioned, was rumored to give Andrew money from her private account to the tune of about $474,000, but that certainly would not cover everything. It was reported that in addition to the money from the queen, Andrew has been known to borrow about $237,000 every few months from Banque Havilland. These alleged loans from the bank located in Luxembourg, known for its discretion, went on for a number of years. It was additionally discovered in 2017 that Andrew borrowed an additional $474,000 shortly thereafter to cover "general working capital and living expenses." 

The prince has owned a number of estates throughout his life

One of the biggest signs of personal financial success is property, and Prince Andrew has owned and sold quite a lot over the years — some of the dealings, you may not be surprised, weren't seen as particularly above board. For example, Andrew sold his Sunninghill Park estate in 2007 for about $18 million. Handing over the keys to Timor Kulibayev — the president of Kazakhstan's son-in-law — Andrew made about $3.6 million more than what he originally listed the home for. When questions were raised about the sale of the home and why the prince made so much more money off of Kulibayev, Buckingham Palace said in part, "[Kulibayev did] not commit the prince to any other commercial arrangement."

After that sale, Andrew and Sarah Ferguson bought an enormous chalet in the Swiss resort of Verbier for somewhere between $9 and $16 million. Though they were divorced, the exes shared the mortgage, and the purchase was categorized as a joint investment. The BBC noted at the time of the purchase that Buckingham Palace declined to comment on the joint venture.

The ex-couple listed the chalet in 2020 with approximately a $22 million price tag. The property had reportedly become a point of legal contention between Andrew and a French socialite. According to the Daily Mail, this was due to the dispute, and the prince parted ways with the home.

Andrew and Sarah Ferguson have called the Royal Lodge home for years

So where does Prince Andrew live now? He and ex Sarah Ferguson — who have continued living together for decades despite being divorced — call the Royal Lodge, which is located in Windsor Park, home. They have lived there for about two decades, moving into the property in 2004.

The royal lodge is located about three miles away from Windsor Castle, where Queen Elizabeth II spent much of her time leading up to her passing. It was originally a part of the Crown Estate and where Queen Elizabeth lived in 2002. Built all the way back in the 1600s, the Royal Lodge has been home to a number of royal family members as well as household staff but has since been used by Andrew and his family since the early 2000s. The home sits on roughly 98 acres of land, and the structure itself boasts 30 rooms in total. Seven bedrooms make up the top two floors, and the formal drawing room, saloon, and conservatory exist on the ground floor. In addition to the main house, the Royal Lodge also includes the Y Bwthyn Bach cottage. This historical structure was gifted to then-Princess Elizabeth by the country of Wales all the way back in 1932, and still stands to this day.

The prince may be relying on his ex-wife to fund his lavish lifestyle

We've certainly established that not only does Prince Andrew live an incredibly lavish life, but his finances — from the information available to the public — certainly may not cover his way of living. So how can he go about affording such a lifestyle as a non-working member of the royal family, who no longer can rely on his mother for additional money? As it happens, Andrew might be relying on his ex-wife, Sarah Ferguson, to cover his expenses. It has been suggested that given Andrew's lack of royal work — and the optics alone aren't great — King Charles III might put an end to his yearly allowance. The debate over Andrew's lifestyle has gotten so significant that Charles might kick Andrew out of his living arrangement (which we'll get more into later), and in an uncharacteristic moment of clarity, Fergie offered some insight into the situation.

During an interview with Hello! Magazine in March 2023, Fergie said of the financial whispers, "This is really a matter for the Duke and His Majesty," noting that Andrew "doesn't actually take taxpayers' money." Saying that she would step in financially, however, Fergie said that she can "support [Andrew] and the rest of the family through my work, and I'm really pleased and proud to do that." Fergie continues to be a popular figure on the royal circuit and has released a number of books over the years.

Andrew has reportedly engaged in shady investments in tax-free countries

Where there's financial smoke, there always seems to be some slow-burning, shady fire. Prince Andrew's luxurious lifestyle could be possible thanks to some questionable business dealings. His relationship with David Rowland, a British property developer, has consistently come under fire given that the two appear to engage in tax-evasive measures. The Daily Mail conducted a thorough investigation into the relationship and just what business benefits Andrew was on the receiving end of.

Looking into the relationship thoroughly in 2019, the Mail claimed that Andrew and Rowland were engaging in a tax-evasive scheme based in the Caribbean, a region known for avoiding steep tax rates. The report claimed that the prince and Rowland had frequently visited the region while Andrew was working as a special representative on behalf of the crown as it related to trade and investment. After stepping down from that role in 2011, Andrew's lifestyle — and his travel expenses to the Caribbean — still seemed to be funded by taxpayer money.

When push came to shove and the palace responded to the investigation, The Guardian reported at the time that no comment would be made "other than to state that the duke is entitled to a degree of privacy in conducting his entirely legitimate personal financial affairs, on which all appropriate accounting measures are undertaken and all taxes duly paid."

The prince's watch collection alone is worth six figures

Prince Andrew has been known to enjoy a level of lavish living that even the late Queen Elizabeth II never engaged in, and he gained quite a lot of nicknames over the years. From "Handy Andy" — which really didn't age well — to "Air Miles Andy" and the "Playboy Prince," Andrew definitely did not spare any expense when it came to his way of living. Nor did he seem to care what the public thought of his endeavors. But what exactly does he spend all this money on? Well, his watch collection alone is reportedly worth hundreds of thousands. In addition to a number of watches from famed jewelers Cartier and Rolex — which can set someone back thousands — Andrew reportedly has a watch from Patek Philippe that is worth over $180,000 on its own.

In addition to his well-known penchant for watches, the prince also has a documented love of cars and has a nearly $100,000 Range Rover and an over $265,000 Bentley in his collection. Andrew has sold a few pieces of his car range here and there, parting with his Bentley Flying Spur after purchasing it in 2015 for about $180,000. He was able to sell it for just shy of $115,000, and the new owner also reportedly parted ways with it shortly thereafter.

Andrew was said to have helped pay for his daughters' weddings and security out of his own pocket

Any royal watcher will tell you that King Charles III has actively pushed for a more slimmed-down version of the monarchy, casting aside some members of the family in order to spare taxpayer expenses. Security, of course, has been a big issue that has played out in real-time. Prince Andrew and his daughters, Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie are such royals who also don't enjoy the security detail offered to more senior members. As such, Andrew reportedly pays for his daughters' bodyguards from his own finances in order to keep them safe. It was reported that after a review conducted by the Metropolitan Police, that Beatrice and Eugenie lost their protection officers, and their father stepped in to cover the bill.

As for his daughters' weddings, Andrew reportedly spared no expense when it came to their big days, specifically Eugenie (Beatrice got married in a very toned-down service amid the COVID-19 pandemic). When Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank got married in 2018, their ceremony reportedly cost millions, and Andrew was said to have helped pay for it. A source told The Telegraph, however, that his well of money was drying up rapidly.

Andrew's travel budget is out of control

While his older brother, then-Prince Charles, was preparing for life as the reigning monarch and working alongside the late Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Andrew wasn't taking his royal role so seriously. In the early 2000s, Andrew was known for being away for days at a time on incredible vacations, joining the likes of Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell and the elite social circle they used to be a part of. It was reported that during a trip to Phuket, Thailand, in 2000, Andrew spent about $4,800 a night on an incredibly exclusive resort. To really seal the deal on just how lavish — and frivolous — his trip was, Andrew was photographed with half-nude women while on the trip, enjoying the splendors of a private yacht.

In addition to his trip to Thailand, Andrew also traveled to New York, Florida, and the Caribbean — specifically St. Tropez — to continue rubbing shoulders with the world's elite, collectively spending thousands. He reportedly traveled with his mattress, a personal manicurist, and his valet with him. He also enjoyed champagne that costs hundreds of dollars with his friends while partying at nightclubs. It certainly is a quality of life that very few enjoy — and given his missteps, Andrew certainly doesn't have the friends he once used to.

The prince has resided at Buckingham Palace since the 1980s

In addition to the numerous homes he has owned and his residence at the royal lodge, Prince Andrew has called Buckingham Palace home since the 1980s. According to author David McClure, who pointed to Andrew's many residences and his spending habits as a whole, "The answers behind Andrew's sources of wealth are shrouded in mystery," telling The Sun that the prince's life has been under scrutiny "for at least 15 to 20 years." Despite that, however, Andrew has continued to enjoy the splendors of royal life and enjoys one of the many residences amid the London palace.

But just how big is Buckingham Palace, and does Andrew really take up that much room amid the property? Well, the property has a total of 775 rooms, including 52 different bedrooms that are filled with both royal family members and guests. Andrew, meanwhile, has a suite on the palace grounds that — though currently under construction — has a couple of odd touches. In addition to his lavish life, Andrew is said to enjoy embroidery and has a number of pillows in his Buckingham Palace suite that include the phrases "Daddy," "Eat, sleep and re-marry," and, "Before you meet your real prince you have to kiss a lot of frogs." The peculiarities around the prince certainly don't seem to cease.

The prince is reportedly taking cues from Harry and Meghan and their own lavish lifestyle

When Prince Harry and Meghan Markle stepped back from their roles as senior royals in January 2020, they did so while maintaining that they'd become financially independent from the royal institution. Given their deals with Netflix, Spotify, and their organization Archewell, they seem to have been able to do that all while carving out a new life for themselves in the United States. Prince Andrew, meanwhile, has not been nearly as successful in his post-senior royal life, as the public disapproval of him certainly has not run dry. Despite this, Andrew reportedly has his eyes set on returning to public life, and he is taking a cue from Harry and Meghan as to how to go about that — all while maintaining their own lavish lifestyle.

"Andrew is less bothered than people think about losing his titles and official royal roles. He is thinking about how he can forge a new career. He has been keenly keeping an eye on everything Harry and Meghan have been doing in America," a source told The U.S. Sun of the now-disgraced royal. "He is very interested in the businesses and charity side of things, rather than doing anything on Netflix," the source continued, noting that Andrew will likely try to replicate some sort of monetizing career away from the confines of the royal family.

Andrew will be moving to Frogmore Cottage in a controversial decision made by King Charles III

Remember when we said that Prince Andrew might be forced to rely on Sarah Ferguson financially and that King Charles III might kick him out of his living arrangement? Well, it turns out that this all has to do with Andrew's lavish lifestyle, his finances, and the potential slashing of his yearly allowance. Without his income, Andrew reportedly told close friends that he would not be able to maintain the Royal Lodge. As such, Charles maintained that he would not leave Andrew "homeless or penniless" — and has offered up Frogmore Cottage as a living arrangement for him. This, of course, comes at the expense of Charles' son, Prince Harry, and his wife Meghan Markle, who have called Frogmore Cottage their London base since their days as senior royals.

When Meghan and Harry were still working for the family, they renovated Frogmore extensively. Though it was a little controversial, the couple proceeded to cover the $3.2 million costs of the renovation from their own pocket in order to smooth things over with the taxpayers. With all this said, Charles' request for Harry and Meghan to vacate Frogmore to allow Andrew to move in is all coming at a time when things between the Sussexes, the royal family, and Andrew are coming to a head.