How did Dodi meet Diana? Their relationship explained ahead of The Crown Season 5

Dodi Al-Fayed was in a relationship with Princess Diana when they both died in a car crash.

Princess Diana in blue dress, split layout with Dodi Al-Fayed
(Image credit: Getty / Alamy)

Princess Diana and Dodi Al-Fayed were in a romantic relationship leading up to their untimely deaths, but royal fans wonder how did Dodi meet Diana?

Princess Diana captured people's hearts when she became the Princess of Wales after marrying husband Prince Charles but when their 15-year fairytale marriage ended and her HRH title removed, Diana continued to attract attention in everything she did - from her charity work to her impeccable style.

Not surprising that it wasn't long before a would-be suitor came along and whisk the Princess off her feet. But it wasn't all plain sailing for the pair, with Dodi's girlfriend Kelly Fisher making allegations about the two in the press. We look at how Dodi met Diana...

How did Dodi meet Diana?

Dodi Al-Fayed first met Princess Diana at a 1996 Polo match in Windsor when her then husband Prince Charles and Dodi were on opposite teams, according to The Independent. A year later, in 1997, Diana was invited by Dodi's father Mohammed Al-Fayed to spend time on his yacht in St Tropez, in the south of France and it's understood that this is when they really got to know each other.

At the time, Diana was reportedly in a relationship with heart surgeon Hasnat Khan, who later told an inquest that Diana had ended their relationship shortly after meeting Dodi, although at the time she denied the Egyptian film producer and the son of billionaire Mohamed Al Fayed was the reason for their split.

In August 1997, Diana returned to the yacht and it is here that Diana and Dodi were photographed kissing, before flying to Paris together. 

How long were Dodi and Diana together?

Dodi and Princess Diana had only been together for a few months, having only spent a handful of days together before they were both tragically killed in a car crash in Paris, France on 31st August 1997. Having only been together for a short time, there was a lot of interest surrounding their relationship. 

Mohammed Al Fayed (far left) and Diana, Princess Of Wales (right of Mohammed) are seen in St Tropez in the summer of 1997, shortly before Diana and Dodi were killed in a car crash in Paris on August 31, 1997

(Image credit: Getty)

What was Dodi Fayed cause of death?

Dodi Al-Fayed's cause of death was a result of "gross negligence" on the part of their chauffeur Mr Henri Paul and the Paparazzi, according to the jury in the inquest into Diana and Dodi's deaths. 

Investigations concluded that their driver Henri Paul was driving under the influence of alcohol and prescription drugs, with paparazzi chasing the couple also said to have contributed to the car crash in which the chauffeur-driven Mercedes ran into a pillar in the tunnel under the Pont Alma, and at the time neither Princess Diana nor Dodi were wearing a seatbelt. 

Princess Diana and Dodi Al-Fayed memorial in Harrods

(Image credit: Getty)

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Selina Maycock
Senior Entertainment Writer

Selina is currently a Senior Entertainment Writer for, formerly Senior Entertainment writer for Woman&Home, and My Imperfect Life with more than 16 years of experience in newspapers and magazines. She currently writes a mix of Entertainment news - including celebrity births, weddings, reporting the the latest news about the Royal kids Prince George, Charlotte, Louis, Archie and Lilibet as well as Family news stories from baby names to store closures and product recall warnings. Before joining Future Publishing, Selina graduated from the University of Sheffield in 2006 with a degree in Journalism. She is fully NCTJ and NCE qualified and has 100wpm shorthand. When she's not interviewing celebrities you can find her exploring new countryside walking routes, catching up with friends over good food, or making memories.