Gifts have been sent back and forth between the families, PEOPLE has learned

By Simon Perry and Erin Hill
December 18, 2020 03:28 PM
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Prince William, Kate Middleton, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry on Christmas Day in 2017
| Credit: Stephen Pond/Getty Images

Meghan Markle, Prince Harry, Kate Middleton and Prince William are celebrating the season with gift-giving.

The Sussex and Cambridge families have been sending each other Christmas presents ahead of the holiday, PEOPLE has learned.

Presents have been sent back and forth between the entire royal family as well as they experience their first socially-distanced Christmas amid the ongoing pandemic.

Meghan and Harry, along with their 19-month-old son Archie, are gearing up to ring in their first holiday season in their new Montecito home in California, and the family is "excited to decorate for Christmas," a source previously told PEOPLE.

Meanwhile, William and Kate have said they're still unsure of their Christmas plans after it was announced that Queen Elizabeth had called off her annual trip to Sandringham for the holiday.

Kate Middleton, Prince William, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry on Christmas Day in 2018
| Credit: Chris Jackson/Getty

"It is so difficult. We are still trying to make plans," William said during his recent Royal Train Tour alongside Kate. "It's difficult to know what to do for the best."

The Queen, 94, and husband Prince Philip, 99, will stay at Windsor Castle, where they have spent much of their time in quarantine since March. This year will mark the first time since 1987 that the Queen will spend Christmas at Windsor rather than Sandringham.

A royal source tells PEOPLE, "They are fortunate to spend Christmas with their family every year, but they understand that their family will have competing demands over the Christmas period and are content to have a quiet festive season this year."

Queen Elizabeth on Christmas Day 2019
| Credit: Steve Parsons/Getty Images

While Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall have plans to visit the Queen and Philip at Windsor Castle at some point during the holiday period, it is not yet known whether William, Kate and their three children will be paying them a visit.

"Like everyone, their hope is that normality will return in 2021," the source adds. The Queen and Philip may still see some members of their family, "but they understand that they have competing demands."

Despite the uncertainty around the celebrations, William and Kate's kids, Prince George, 7, Princess Charlotte, 5, and Prince Louis, 2, are getting into the Christmas spirit.

The Cambridge family Christmas card
| Credit: Matt Porteous
Kate Middleton, Prince William, Prince Louis, Princess Charlotte and Prince George
| Credit: Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty

The royal siblings excitedly made their red carpet debut last week at a Christmas pantomime performance at the London Palladium. The children's grandmother, Carole Middleton, also shared that the trio would help decorate her Christmas tree via video call.

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Meghan Markle and Archie
| Credit: The Duke of Sussex/@SaveChildrenUK
Archie and Prince Harry
| Credit: Sussex Royals

Meghan and Harry's son Archie has also experienced a festive season. The family marked Halloween by taking Archie trick-or-treating and his grandmother, Doria Ragland, joined in for the family's first American Thanksgiving.

"They are very happy," an insider told PEOPLE. "Archie is thriving and growing quickly."