Abdullah bin Hussein al-Hashem was born in Amman on 30 January 1962 to King Hussein and his second wife, British-born Antoinette Gardiner. Educated abroad, Abdullah's early schooling was at Saint Edmunds and at Harrow in Britain. He also attended Deerfield Academy in Massachusetts. Abdullah's post-secondary education includes military training at the elite Sandhurst Military Academy in Britain, a diploma in international politics from Oxford University, and a year's study at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.
Returning to Jordan in 1984, Abdullah became an officer in the Jordanian army. On 10 June 1993, he married Rania Yassin, a Kuwaiti-born Palestinian with family roots in the West Bank town of Tulkarm. They have two young children: a son, Hussein, and a daughter, Iman.
An athletic and easygoing man, Abdullah is an accomplished marksman and a licensed pilot. His interests include scuba diving, parachuting, and auto racing. He also collects antique weaponry and is a fan of the television show, Star Trek.