Questions regarding what is permitted or forbidden in various places including unforseen technicalities.

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123
votes
4answers
14k views

Immigration officer that stopped me at the airport is texting me. What do I do?

Yesterday my cousin arrived to Chicago from Mexico, she is visiting family there to spend the holidays, this is not the first time she visits. She was stopped by immigration, because they thought it ...
72
votes
5answers
20k views

Can I fly with a gold bar?

Can I fly with a Good Delivery gold bar? I'll have the certificate that I have been given with it. I have looked on Google and found nothing that suggests it's a prohibited item on an aircraft. It's ...
53
votes
10answers
15k views

If, like Edward Snowden, your passport was revoked or cancelled, how could you travel?

As per the news, NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden has had his passport revoked by the United States Government. From the article: It was not immediately clear how Snowden was able to travel, ...
53
votes
7answers
6k views

Giving First Aid in the USA

I am a qualified first-aider in the UK and as such would automatically stop to give aid to any accidents and emergencies I saw. I was watching a US show on the TV the other night where someone was ...
49
votes
10answers
17k views

Can I stop a fellow passenger from using their cell phone during take off?

What can I do for my personal safety when I see a fellow passenger use their cellphone after the instructions to switch off mobile devices is given? On a recent flight in India, I was seated next to ...
47
votes
10answers
42k views

Where is wild camping possible in Europe?

Are there countries in Europe where wild camping with a tent allowed or at least tolerated? How high is the probability that someone will get angry at you or even call the police? Please consider ...
47
votes
2answers
52k views

Why are you now required NOT to smile in passport photos?

Passport photos these days are usually pretty specific - certain size, color, etc. But the odd requirement the past few years is that usually you're not allowed to smile in them. We're discussing ...
46
votes
3answers
17k views

Can I wear a bulletproof vest while traveling on British Airways from Heathrow?

I'll be wearing it all the time anyway once I arrive at my hostile destination but how about wearing it during the flight? It makes sense to wear it in case someone try to hijack the plane.
45
votes
1answer
7k views

Why are balloons prohibited at Amsterdam Schiphol?

At Amsterdam Schiphol Airport there are prominent No Balloons signs on each entrance to train platforms. What is the story or rationale behind that ban?
44
votes
6answers
10k views

Is it prohibited to lie down (and fall asleep) on a commercial flight?

When there is enough space to do that. I have traveled with EasyJet and I was lucky enough to have three seats to myself! I didn't have the courage to try lying down and see if I would get ...
43
votes
2answers
93k views

Is weed still legal for tourists in Amsterdam?

I have heard it's not legal starting from 2013. I also heard they postponed applying this? So what's the deal? Allowed or not?
42
votes
9answers
7k views

Will my passport number change when I renew it?

I'm travelling soon but need to renew my passport. Given that I have to provide my passport number to the airline to book a flight, I was wondering if my passport number would change if I renew it. ...
41
votes
4answers
8k views

As a tourist, can I try firearms in California?

I will be traveling to the United States soon (with an ESTA application). I come from an European country where firearms are forbidden. (For regular citizens.) I would really like to try it when I'll ...
41
votes
3answers
4k views

Birth while traveling on-board an airplane

Yesterday, a friend of mine who works as a purser (chief flight attendant) helped a lady with delivering her baby during a flight to Manila, Philippines while over the ocean :) I know that pregnant ...
41
votes
1answer
3k views

€5 coin not accepted

Three years ago I went to the post office in a big city in France, there I received change back after I paid for something. I didn't look at it first but later on I discovered that I received a €5 ...
39
votes
7answers
7k views

Air travel with white powder in little transparent bag

Instead of plain old coffee, I sometimes like to get my daily caffeine ration from other drinks, e.g. fruit juice. For this purpose I have bought some pure caffeine, which takes the form of white ...
39
votes
7answers
13k views

What to do if drugs / a bomb are planted in your travel bag?

So the scene: You're flying from Bogota, Colombia to New York, USA. You arrive, pick up your bag from the carousel, and figure you'll stuff your netbook you used on the flight into your bag now ...
38
votes
5answers
60k views

Can a tourist buy a gun in the USA?

This came up as a discussion. With recent incidents in the news, it's often argued by some members of the public in the US that guns are a requirement for safety, and that everyone should have the ...
37
votes
8answers
5k views

What are the rules to be aware of on a road with a sign that indicates rocks might fall?

I'm from Flanders and I don't have a driver's license. These signs are rather rare in Flanders, but I see them frequently as a passenger alongside the Spanish coast, in the Valencia province. The ...
36
votes
8answers
53k views

Is it safe and legal to sleep in my car in California (L.A. area)?

I will be visiting California and some parts of the US West Coast in the coming September. I'd like to rent a car for travelling, and to reduce travel expenses I would like to sleep in it some nights. ...
36
votes
6answers
30k views

What happens if you cannot pay for a hotel?

What happens if you cannot pay for your hotel stay because you accidentally run out of money (can happen) or your credit card was blocked (much more likely)? I assume you cannot arrange the money on ...
36
votes
3answers
16k views

Travelling as unmarried couple in Dubai

I'd wish to visit Dubai with my girlfriend, but after reading this travel advice and this question on sex and couples in Dubai I started to get a little worried about it. How should I book an hotel? ...
36
votes
3answers
4k views

Is it technically illegal for US citizens to visit Cuba? [duplicate]

There is a belief that US citizens would be doing something illegal if they were to visit Cuba. I remember hearing years ago while in Mexico where lots of people go on sidetrips to Cube that it's not ...
35
votes
7answers
12k views

What regulations should a European driver know when driving in the US?

There are the obvious ones. The US has the keep-your-lane system, where as in Europe you are expected to keep to the right (left for UK) as long as possible. On my latest travel to the US, I was ...
35
votes
3answers
25k views

Legalities and safety concerns of visiting prostitutes in Amsterdam

A friend of mine left his girlfriend after a long (~5 years) relationship. To cheer him up a little bit, we decided to go to Amsterdam, as they have liberal prostitution and drug consuming laws. We'...
34
votes
3answers
7k views

Is it legal to sleep in a parked car on the streets of Munich?

Oktoberfest is the world's largest beer festival held annually in Munich, Germany. Being the largest beer festival means accommodation during the festival is either super-expensive or hard to book ...
33
votes
4answers
5k views

Your address at destination: What if you don't know any address?

Often, when entering a country, you must fill a form that asks, in particular, where you will stay. What if you don't know yet? Even worse, what if you don't have your guidebook in hand luggage, and ...
32
votes
4answers
12k views

What does this road sign mean? (Germany; red circle and X on a blue background, with a right-pointing arrow.)

I'm driving for the first time in Europe—in Munich, Germany—and I came across an intersection where there seemed to a "main" signal above, straight ahead, and a "side" signal to the right, near the ...
31
votes
6answers
32k views

Is leaving airport at a stop before the final destination illegal?

There are tricks such as "fuel dumping" or "hidden city ticketing" which involve booking a ticket composed of several connecting flights, then leaving the airport at a stop, possibly even "hopping off"...
31
votes
1answer
2k views

Can a shop in the Netherlands force you to buy clothes if you take a photo? [closed]

I've just been in a shop in Amsterdam which had a sign saying: No pictures allowed and specially not when wearing our garments!!! If we see you making pictures anyway, you will have to buy ...
30
votes
3answers
2k views

Breast feeding in Iran

We are considering a trip to Iran with a 5-month old. What is the local attitude to breast-feeding in public places? Is it legal? Are there any severe consequences? Do you need to use some special ...
29
votes
5answers
15k views

Kicked out of hotel in morning when booking through booking agency (asked to pay for extra day)

I am from UK, I went to travel agent website and booked holiday (flights + hotel), today is the last day and my flight is 22:30. In the morning we went to the city to have some lunch and when we came ...
29
votes
3answers
5k views

DIY computer in hand luggage - what to expect on security checks?

I have a DIY computer which looks like a 7" tablet, only thicker. The case is plastic, and the whole device is about as thick as a laptop. There are no scary wires popping out and no ticking noises, ...
29
votes
2answers
2k views

Can I bring an anti-religious book into Saudi Arabia?

Could I bring books like The God Delusion from Richard Dawkins to Saudi Arabia? What will happen if they saw this book in my hand during the check-in or somewhere else in Saudi Arabia? What about ...
29
votes
3answers
85k views

What harm can be done with a copy of one's passport?

In one of the questions on this site, it was suggested the use of Dropbox to save a backup copy of your passport, in case you need to proof who you are if your original document is lost. I like the ...
29
votes
3answers
11k views

What happens when a foreigner gets a traffic fine in the United States?

What happens when a foreigner gets a speeding ticket / traffic fine in the United States? I've heard that the issuing officer will demand payment on site or will confiscate the drivers license. That ...
28
votes
2answers
7k views

How does the US know that I left?

Every time I leave Australia, I have to fill in an official form that the government collects to state that I've left the country. However, when I left the US last week (after my first visit there), ...
28
votes
2answers
4k views

Can an airline really refuse to depart when overbooked?

I do not fly often, but when traveling home from vacation with my family yesterday, I encountered something I have never seen and I am wondering if what the flight attendants were saying was true. ...
28
votes
2answers
25k views

What happens if you lose your passport at an airport / during transit?

Once, when flying from India to the UK, I left my passport on the plane's seat-back pocket and forgot that I left it there until I reached the passport control desks. Fortunately in this case, I ...
27
votes
3answers
8k views

Are non-Muslims allowed to build snowmen in Saudi Arabia and similar countries?

I recently read Saudi Arabia 'fatwa over building of snowmen'. A religious scholar issued a fatwa (which merely means legal opinion) against the building of snowmen, or snow models of animals (such as ...
27
votes
3answers
9k views

What should you do if you get arrested in a foreign country?

If a traveller - for whatever reason, is arrested on charges (valid or otherwise), what steps should he/she take to ensure their safety, local and home legal aid and security? How can one make sure ...
26
votes
4answers
8k views

Can aircrew order me not to stand in the aisle?

It's Ramadan and I am planning to travel on British Airways, I will have to stand in the aisle for praying, is it the aircrews' right to ask/order me to go back to my seat?
26
votes
3answers
4k views

How many smartphones can I take on an airplane?

I'm a software developer and I need multiple different mobile devices for testing and debugging purposes. I also work on-the-go sometimes, so this is important. Furthermore, not everything can be ...
26
votes
2answers
49k views

Can a hotel kick you out if you let an unregistered guest share a room with you?

We are going to an event and because of this event all hotels are fully booked. Now a friend wants to join us, but can't find accommodation. We are okay with him crashing in our hotel room, either on ...
26
votes
1answer
2k views

How to clean drug misdemeanor in US so I don't get stopped at border every time?

I'm an American living in Canada. 11 years ago, when I was 19, I was stupid and had some pot in my car while driving through a border patrol checkpoint. (Note: A border patrol checkpoint is not the ...
25
votes
11answers
13k views

Do any States in the US give traffic tickets for 5 mph above the speed limit?

In Louisiana, USA it's widely understood (unofficially) that one can travel 5mph above the speed limit without receiving a speeding ticket. Does this rule apply when traveling the rest of the States?...
25
votes
9answers
63k views

What kind of ID does the US accept when visiting bars or drinking age events?

For tourists visiting the states, what kind of ID do you need to carry with you to visit bars or drinking age events? I understand the passport is the main piece of ID but do they accept any other ...
25
votes
5answers
5k views

What headwear are women legally required to wear in Iran?

In Air France cabin crew angered by ruling to wear headscarves in Tehran, it's stated by Air France that women, even people who are presumably non-Iranian and non-Muslim, are required to wear a "veil":...
25
votes
5answers
7k views

Within the United States (Pittsburgh), when merging onto a lane, which turn signal do you use?

While driving in Pennsylvania, specifically in Schenley Park in Pittsburgh, I was merging from a side-street to a main road, as seen in the picture below. I had stopped at the stop-sign, checked for ...
25
votes
4answers
8k views

Firearm carried aboard an ocean going sailboat

While planning to sail the open seas and visiting other countries, I have decided to take a personal firearm. Owning and carrying a personal firearm is legal in my home state. What would be the proper ...