Not all countries are the same. Each has its own culture, beliefs, and rules that must be considered. As a result, some parts of the world have laws that wouldn't be expected. You might not even believe them sometimes. Some countries have extremely strict punishments for even small crimes while others don't punish criminals at all.
At Allianz Travel, we care about our travellers and want them to be safe. Here are some of the weird laws around the world you probably didn't know about, to keep you and your fellow travellers informed.
70% of Sri Lanka practice Buddhism. Mistreatment of Buddhist images, such as in tattoos, are a serious offence. Tourists have been convicted for this. Those with visible tattoos of Buddha have even been refused entry to Sri Lanka, or deported.
Or Posing for Selfies with Buddha
This goes for posing for photos with Buddha statues also as it is a mistreatment of Buddhist artefacts.
Although you may see many people smoking vapes in Thailand, it is actually a criminal offence as possession is breaking the law. If you try to bring an e-cigarette and/or refills into Thailand, they are likely to be confiscated and you may be fined or sent to prison for up to 10 years if convicted.
Whilst we are on the subject of smoking in Thailand, smoking is banned across 24 beaches in 15 provinces, including some of its most popular destinations. Make sure you do your research before lighting up.
Have you ever smelled the whiff of a durian fruit? If so, you will be able to see why Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore have banned the fruit from public places such as buses, subways, hotels and airports. If you must eat one, do so elsewhere.
In a bid to reduce the number of pigeons within St Mark’s Square in Venice, the act of feeding the birds was outlawed. If you do feed the pigeons, you could be faced with a fine. There are far more interesting things to do in Venice anyway!
It is illegal to run out of gas on the Autobahn, so make sure you are fully stocked up if you are driving this route. It is also illegal to walk along the Autobahn, not that you would want to do that.
If you are visiting historic sites such as the Acropolis, make sure you are in flats. Wearing high heels in these areas has been banned through the fear of them causing damage to these ancient monuments.
It is not just ill-mannered to chew gum in Singapore, it is a criminal offence. The only exceptions for this are therapeutic, dental or nicotine chewing gum which can only be purchased from a doctor or registered pharmacist.
You should always do your research before visiting a new country to make sure you abide by their local laws and customs. You wouldn’t want to accidentally be rude to a local or break any laws, now would you?
We care about our customers and want them to be safe when they travel. Along with our quality travel insurance offers, we usually want to advise people to study the laws of the countries they are visiting in order to plan a safe and secure trip.