Former Governor General Michaëlle Jean’s travel expenses almost as high as Stephen Harper’s

Former governor general Michaëlle Jean travelled almost as much as Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Quebec newspaper La Presse reports.

Between January 2006 and September 2010, Jean made 251 trips and accumulated more than 1,048 hours of flight. The bill for travel expenses totalled $2.7 million.

In roughly the same time period, Harper made 255 trips at a cost of $3.1 million.

La Presse also notes that on eight separate occasions, Jean used government planes for personal trips including five junkets to her family home in France. She also visited Jamaica, Barbados and Mexico with her husband and their daughter.

The data adds fodder to anti-monarchists who argue the mostly ceremonial role is unnecessary and a waste of money.

Jean's predecessor, Adrienne Clarkson, was one who especially raised the ire of Canadians for her not-so spendthrift ways.

Clarkson's budget increased from $11 million a year to $19 million during her tenure.

In 2003, she enraged Canadians after going $4 million over budget on a northern country tour to promote Canadian culture.

In contrast to Clarkson and Jean, current Governor General David Johnston hasn't been much of a jet-setter. In his first eight months on the job, he travelled only 24 times at cost to taxpayers of $299,170.

(CBC Photo)