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European RoyalsNorway

Princess Ingrid Alexandra flies in F-16 during military engagement

Princess Ingrid Alexandra of Norway paid a visit to the Royal Norwegian Air Force base in Bodø on Saturday, continuing her engagements with the Norwegian military as she nears her 18th birthday next month.

On Saturday afternoon, Princess Ingrid Alexandra visited Air Wing 132 of the 331 Squadron in Bodø at the invitation of the Chief of Defence, greeted by the Chief of the Air Force, Major General Rolf Folland and Bodø’s Base Commander Lieutenant Colonel Henning Homb Hansen.

During her visit, Princess Ingrid Alexandra learned about the Royal Norwegian Air Force’s current missions—including the Quick Reaction Alert Mission, which ensures that Norway and NATO is well-prepared, within 15 minutes, for any need—and then flew in the back of an F-16 jet to view large swathes of northern Norway from the sky.

Photo: Simen Sund / The Royal Court

According to the Norwegian Royal House, Princess Ingrid Alexandra flew from Bodø to Bardufoss, Evenes and Lofoten, before returning to Bodø. She was required to pass a medical examination before she was cleared for flight and also received a safety letter and studied the route beforehand.

The Royal Norwegian Air Force shared a picture of Princess Ingrid Alexandra’s visit with the caption, “In January, the F-35 will take over, so we can probably say this was the last royal backseat ride for a long time.”

Crown Prince Haakon received the same flight simulation in an F-16 before his 18th birthday. His flight took place on 30 September 1991 over southern Norway from Rygge airport. Princess Märtha Louise’s flight occurred in August 1990 in the back of an F-5 fighter jet.

The Norwegian Royal House announced in a statement on Saturday that in the coming months Princess Ingrid Alexandra will undertake further engagements with the military, though they have so far declined to comment on her future plans once she finishes secondary school.

Photo: Simen Sund / The Royal Court

Last month, she paid a visit to the Hunter Troop in Østerdalen. You can read more about that engagement here.

Both her father and grandfather trained in the military following their education, as did her grandmother once she became Crown Princess.

When she becomes Norway’s first modern queen regnant, Princess Ingrid Alexandra will be Commander-in-Chief of the Norwegian Armed Forces.

About author

Jess Ilse is the Assistant Editor at Royal Central. She specialises in the British, Danish, Norwegian and Swedish Royal Families and has been following royalty since Queen Elizabeth II’s Golden Jubilee. Jess has provided commentary for media outlets in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia. Jess works in communications and her debut novel THE MAJESTIC SISTERS will publish in Fall 2024.