Rules are essential for any community to live in peace. Without them, society can fall into anarchy and can disrupt the order. We all have an idea of how the law works. But what if the laws themselves impart confusion in the people? There are many such laws in some countries which are confusing, if not downright weird.
These laws might appear amusing for any traveler. But it is no fun when you have levied a heavy fine for a seemingly simple mistake. Hence it is important to have a good idea of what to and what not to do in a country that you are planning to visit. This can save you a lot of money and time on your international tour if you study the rules.
Here are some of the curious rules from around the globe
No flushing after 10 PM!
In Switzerland, there is a law that bans flushing after 10 PM. Yes! it is true. Who makes such laws, right? If you are planning to visit Switzerland as part of your international tour, make sure to finish your business before 10 at night.
If you go to Kenya or UAE and you are frustrated about something, hold your tongue. You cannot swear in these countries. The rule also applies to offensive gestures. Hence when you are on an international tour to these countries, you have to be like a good catholic girl and be on your best behavior. Else, you may have to face some prison time.
Do not cut the cactus
Even in countries that give prime importance to personal freedom, there are unusual rules. In Arizona, USA, there is a law that prohibits the cutting of cactus plants. When most places consider them a nuisance, the Arizona government has found its importance and is taking measures to preserve them.
No shirtless driving
Imagine you are in Thailand as part of your world tour. You rented a car, and while driving, you felt very humid and removed your shirt. Thai police stop you in the next intersection and fines you. Don’t feel bewildered. Thailand has a law that prevents people from driving shirtless. Hence, do not remove your shirt while driving even if you feel like melting away.
A dress code
In Sudan and Saudi Arabia, women are supposed to strictly follow a dress code. It is an offense to not cover your hair in public in these countries. It doesn’t matter whether you are on your international tour or not, if you are in the country, you have to follow the dress code strictly.
Do not Kiss
France is generally considered the romantic capital of the world. Anywhere you go, you find couples sharing their moment. It is totally allowed in the country. But there is a law that prevents kissing on trains. Even in railway stations, it is prohibited by law. No one really knows why it is so, but it is the rule and you have to follow it if you like to stay out of trouble. There is no wonder why the couples choose the bus while they are on their world tour.
No, Not the pigeon!
In Australia, pigeons, especially the homing pigeons, are given great importance. They are protected by law against capturing and killing. Animals rights activists may welcome this rule. Surely it shows the Aussie’s compassion to the other species. Nevertheless, the law is not as innocuous as it seems as you will be fined heavily if somehow a homing pigeon gets entangled in your fence.
Men, keep off!
Belly dancing is an Arabian expressive art form that has its origins in Egypt. The artistic dance has many fans all over the world. Hence it is included in most tour packages for world travelers. The exciting music and rhythmic movement of the dancer can exhilarate you. You may feel like dancing to the music. But if you are a man, control yourself because Egyptian laws clearly state that men are not supposed to do belly dancing.
Don’t touch our flag
In India, the constitution gives great respect to the national flag. Unlike in other countries, you cannot wear, tie, or use it in any other form. Disrespecting the flag is considered a serious offense and the culprits are given heavy fines, if not prison time.
The Underwear rule
Another funny rule, this time from Thailand. It is regarding the use of inner-wear. When most countries consider such decisions as a personal choice, Thailand makes it mandatory to wear one. But the relief is that there is personnel to check whether the law is followed. Still, it is better to abide by the law if you are traveling to Thailand on an international package tour.
Guns not knives
In India, soldiers are prohibited from using knives for combat. Only a troop from Nagaland who carries knives as part of their culture has the right to use one in the Indian army. Maybe it is deemed too barbaric, who knows!
Are you in the habit of smoking e-cigarettes or vaporizers? If so, it is better to keep them away when you are on a Thailand tour. The Thai police have the power to confiscate the e-cigarettes and vaporizers if they happen to see them. You may also have to face a penalty for carrying them around. The strangest thing is that this law does not apply to normal cigarettes!
Ban on Selfie
Are you a selfie lover who loves to capture your emotions in the different tourist locations around the world? If so, we have bad news for you. You cannot capture selfies in Srilanka — well, not everywhere, but with the iconic Buddha statues of the land. Law prohibits you from making faces and capturing the moment. Better remember this law on your world tour package, especially if you are a selfie enthusiast. But you can ask your partner to click a photograph of you near the statue. It is not prohibited. At least for now!
Have two, we insist!
While polygamy is punishable by law in most countries around the world, some parts of Africa have a different rule altogether. It is mandatory to have two wives in these regions. In other words, polygamy is the law here. So better discuss with your wife before you plan to visit these regions as part of your international tour package. She may have something to say about it.
Check your fuel tank
Germany is one of the best countries to visit on your international travel. But there is a strange law in Germany that bans running out of fuel while driving through the Autobahn — the national freeway of the country. So if you plan to rent a car and drive through Germany, make sure that your fuel tank is full. Else you may have to get stuck on the road and to add insult to injury, pay a hefty fine too. It is difficult to say which one is worse.
So these are some of the weird laws from around the globe. Some of them, as you have already felt, are just funny, others are concerning, few are even draconian. But if you are an international traveler, you have to abide by these laws while on these lands. Most countries do not exempt tourists from their laws. Hence follow them, however weird or unjust it appears to you. Paying a heavy fine or serving prison time in a foreign country is not a fun thing to do on an otherwise perfect vacation.