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It’s going to be all about timing when King Charles III attends a big meeting later in the year. The monarch, who is still recovering after revealing a cancer diagnosis in February 2024, is headed to Samoa. There, he’ll meet with leaders of the Commonwealth. Timing will reportedly play a big role in ensuring the 75-year-old monarch is “strong and healthy.” 

King Charles is ‘determined’ to travel to Samoa in October for a Commonwealth meeting

According to the U.K.’s Express, despite his cancer diagnosis, the king plans to be at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM). Set for Oct. 21-25, 2024, in Samoa, Buckingham Palace confirmed the 75-year-old’s attendance prior to his diagnosis. 

Per the outlet, doctors have cautioned King Charles against long-haul trips, but he’s “determined” to make it to the meeting as it’s the first under his reign. 

“Despite medical advice recommending against travelling [sic] long distances, particularly due to the time difference, which can add to exhaustion,” an insider said, “the King remains resolute in his decision to undertake the trip.”

Plus, Prince William, 41, can’t take his father’s place at the “pivotal” meeting due to Kate Middleton’s own cancer battle. Nor are any other working royals senior enough to stand in for the king. 

“This is a meeting that the Firm is viewing as pivotal to maintaining its hold over the Commonwealth,” the source said. “The King is determined to attend himself. It’s not something that a stand-in can really undertake on his behalf.”

The Commonwealth meeting will be a ‘scaled-down’ visit for the king with events held on U.K. time

Originally, going to Samoa was supposed to kick off a series of visits abroad, including Australia and New Zealand. Now the Commonwealth meeting is reviewing plans for the “scaled-down tour.”

That’s where the timing comes in. King Charles’s staff reportedly wants to schedule events in Samoa on U.K. time. 

The source said aides are “looking at holding events at times that fit more within the UK’s time zone so that the King can remain strong and healthy during the visit.” 

They concluded that were the Prince of Wales to go in King Charles’s place, it’s unlikely he’d go to the meeting.

“There was already a reluctance from both William and Kate [Middleton] to join the tour of the Commonwealth because they feel it’s an outdated institution,” the source said. 

King Charles has other big events before the Commonwealth meeting

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Sitting down with heads of government isn’t the only big event King Charles has on his calendar. After leading the royal family’s annual Easter service, complete with a pre-recorded audio message as opposed to a filmed speech, the king has what are arguably the biggest events on the royal family’s summer schedule.

There’s Trooping the Colour in June 2024, the annual birthday parade marking the sovereign’s birthday. As the guest of honor, King Charles will play a central role in the celebration. It will culminate with a photo op featuring him and fellow royals on the Buckingham Palace balcony. 

The summer festivities don’t stop there. There’s also the Royal Ascot, an annual horse-racing event, which King Charles attended and won in 2023. Plus, garden parties at Buckingham Palace and the Order of the Garter ceremony.