Laws That Bring the Ultimate Culture Shock to Tourists
When you are travelling abroad, some laws can come as a shocker while some others can land you in jail (yes jail!). Every country finds some topics more sensitive than the others because of which they have specific laws that ban or discourage certain behaviors. As an average tourist, you will find some laws whacky while others can be downright crazy.
Want to know about some of the craziest laws in Europe? Here they are
Spain is a beautiful country, isn’t it? They have a great and fun culture and a delicious cuisine as well. However, some laws in Spain are plain whacky and some are too much of a common sense to be a law. For example, in Barcelona, you can’t spit by law. Yes! Well that’s just basic etiquette but Barcelona takes the etiquette one step further.
Also, Spain doesn’t want people to wear flip flops while driving. If you ever driven wearing them, you will know how dangerous they could be. No matter how comfortable and convenient they are, flip flops can make driving difficult as your feet keeps slipping off. Another common behavior turned into a law by the Spaniards!
Everyone has heard about the chewing gum laws and public caning in Singapore. Though Singapore is one of the most amazing places in the world to be, it has a soft authoritarian kind of government. You are not allowed to chew gums here. The rules are equal for both the residents as well as the tourists. Never chew gum in Singapore. Also, it is a law to flush the public toilet. Yes, a law!
Spain and Singapore have some common-sense turned into law but Portugal does it in the case of a non-verifiable offence. It is a law not to pee in the ocean in Portugal. Now, regardless of the good intentions behind this law, I can’t help but wonder how the authorities sense or prove the offence.
Good old UK
United Kingdom is often known for being polite and old and their laws often help in maintaining the reputation. For example, in London, you are not permitted to hail a cab when you have plague, have a rabid dog along. Also, you are not allowed to hail a cab when you have a corpse. Yes, that’s right. No corpse, no dogs and no plagued people. Though the law goes back to the times of the London plague when the city was facing dangers of hygiene and spread of diseases, it still exists.
Rome is one of Italy’s most famous places and authorities have had a hard time in ensuring that people don’t eat gelato when visiting a historical landmark. Also, you cannot sing or dance in Rome in groups of 3 or 4. This law has never been enforced but you don’t want to be in news for all the wrong reasons. Also, it is restricted to jump in the fountains in Rome.
Do these laws sound wacky to you? Well, consider them small quirks of visiting new cultures. Culture shocks are possible at any time when travelling but avoid the ones that come with a jail sentence.