Some rules were made to be broken, but not these ones! Here are three bizarre laws that you might come across when travelling.
1. Don’t feed the birds
Imagine strolling through the streets of Venice, admiring the world famous canals and flicking a few crumbs to a nearby hungry pigeon. Sounds nice, doesn’t it? Well stop right there, criminal! You’re breaking the law!
In Venice, it’s actually illegal to feed pigeons. Why? Because the pesky birds are causing damage to the city’s beautiful architecture. In 2008, the Venice Mayor announced that anyone found to be feeding pigeons would be liable for fines starting at €50 – a decision that quickly put plenty of local grain sellers out of business.
2. Spit out your gum
Remember in school when the teacher would yell at you for chewing gum? Seemed a bit harsh, didn’t it? Well, at least they didn’t send you to jail. In Singapore, it is currently illegal to import chewing gum unless it is for strict therapeutic use.
The decision was made after excess chewing gum started causing maintenance problems in housing units, where the slimy substance was often stuck in any nook and cranny it would fit into. The good news is that it’s not actually illegal to chew gum, but you better not have any in your pockets when you come through customs.
3. You never visit your mother
Most people would probably admit that they’re guilty of taking their family for granted sometimes. In China, however, they’ve taken some pretty radical steps to fix this, by passing a law that states adult children must visit or stay in touch with their parents – or face the consequences.
The law – which was passed in 2013 – is just as vague as it sounds. There’s no clear distinction on how often people have to visit their parents, or for how long. Still, let’s hope the law inspired a few people to go have dinner with their ‘rents a little more often.
Make sure you avoid these crazy laws when travelling, as not even a good travel insurance policy will be able to save you if you run afoul of the law.
Do you know of any other weird international laws?