41
votes
5answers
3k views

How to avoid suspicious looks when you are in the Western side of the world

Being an Arab with Arabian looks, after September 11 things have changed dramatically when Arabs or people with similar looks (Indians, Pakistanis, Turkish, Kurdish, Iranians...etc) go to the west ...
41
votes
4answers
4k views

What are the options to travel to Mecca or Jabal al-Nour as a non-Muslim?

I'm not a Muslim (I consider myself as Jain/Hindu, etc) but I wish to travel around Mecca. There is a common belief around the world that only Muslims are allowed inside Mecca. Is that true? Can I ...
41
votes
2answers
50k 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 ...
40
votes
6answers
8k views

Being separated from one's young children on a flight

I recently flew with Thomson and I was separated from my 3 year old child on the flight home. He was sitting a row behind and across the aisle from myself. I asked several times if we could be moved ...
40
votes
10answers
15k views

Is tap water drinkable in Massachusetts (and elsewhere in USA)?

I have been offered a position with a US-based company. This role is initially located in Massachusetts, but the company says I can live anywhere in US, as long as I am not too far from an airport. ...
40
votes
12answers
8k views

Can I enter and exit a country immediately?

Is there a minimum amount of time I must spend in a country ? Is this country dependent? Or I can just enter a country and then exit immediately in 15 minutes or so?
40
votes
7answers
10k views

Is it socially/culturally acceptable for Indian/Sri Lankan people to visit the Oktoberfest?

I will be in Spain by the last few days in September, and since the Munich Oktoberfest ends on October 4th, I have a few days to visit Oktoberfest. I'm a Sri Lankan citizen, and I look obvious for ...
40
votes
6answers
8k views

I am travelling with a medication that needs to be cool at all times, will the airline allow me to use the onboard chiller?

If someone is travelling with a medicine that needs to be cool all the time, can I use the fridge onboard? I know that planes have them. I didn't find anything related to the topic in any airline's ...
40
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 ...
40
votes
9answers
24k views

Is it fair to buy a return ticket I know I will never use just because it's cheaper?

I am planning a trip to Asia and then back to Rio. The thing is that I am traveling on flexible dates, so I am thinking of buying a one way ticket to Hong Kong, and I was planning to do the same when ...
40
votes
5answers
9k views

Will I be able to travel around India speaking only English?

I am to travel around some Indian cities: Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and others. Will I have trouble speaking only English, or should I learn some phrases in Hindi?
40
votes
7answers
2k views

What are the best ways to avoid data roaming fees when travelling abroad?

I'm looking for data plans I can use while touring different countries within a region without having to worry about being eaten by roaming fees. If such plans exist at all, I suppose mostly big ...
40
votes
5answers
7k views

Is it culturally acceptable for an American to visit the memorials in Hiroshima and Nagasaki?

The title says it all. Is it culturally acceptable (to the Japanese) for an American to visit the memorials to the victims of the atomic bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki? I realize that a Japanese ...
40
votes
7answers
20k views

How do I get an engagement ring past security/customs in an airport without alerting my significant other?

A related post, made me wonder how you can hide a ring from a "special one" traveling with you to a place where you will propose and yet get it legally through security or customs? You don't want the ...
40
votes
2answers
7k views

Who was this persistent person at Shanghai airport?

About 10 years ago I traveled to Shanghai. When I got off the plane, a guy in plain clothes came up to me and indicated he could take me to whereever I needed to go. I was planning on taking a taxi ...
40
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 ...
40
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
11answers
12k views

How should I tip if the food is good but the service from the waiter/waitress is terrible in the USA?

I tip all the time in the USA, usually from 15% up to 20%. The food is usually good but sometimes the service I received from the waiter/waitress is terrible. He/She was basically ignore me all the ...
39
votes
6answers
10k views

Why does my phone's GPS not work in China?

I am trying to use Google Maps in China. I know that Google is blocked, which is why I downloaded the map of Beijing offline. However, when I open the app my phone attempts to find GPS satellites but ...
39
votes
11answers
4k views

Computer geek tourist attractions in the San Francisco Bay Area & Silicon Valley?

We're planning a family vacation to the San Francisco Bay Area & Silicon Valley, and one of the highlights I don't want to miss is the Computer History Museum. However, I didn't find that listed ...
39
votes
7answers
5k views

Would a non-business traveler ever benefit from collecting air miles, as compared to simply buying the cheapest ticket available?

Looking at various air miles programs around the world, it seems to me that they're only useful for business travelers, who basically get free flights out of their employer's pocket. However for a ...
39
votes
4answers
5k views

Is there a 'minimum daily spend' in Bhutan, and does it vary on citizenship?

While reading an article about Bhutan today, I came across this surprising bit: However, visiting the country for Australians is not straightforward. While there are connecting flights from ...
39
votes
5answers
6k views

Can I take an AVR development board on a plane?

I'm travelling to the UK and while I'm away, I have a university assignment due, and I'm concerned that I might not be able to get it finished before I leave, and would therefore need to work on it ...
39
votes
4answers
4k views

What's the longest scheduled public bus ride in the world?

I'm about to take a depressingly long bus ride in Latin America and am wondering what the longest scheduled public bus ride in the world is. By 'scheduled' I mean for there to be a regularly ...
39
votes
2answers
5k views

What can you do about being forced to sit next to a very large passenger?

My mum is up in arms about that fact that she sat next to a (very) obese gentleman on her flight causing sufficient discomfort for her to grab the cabin jumpseat in cruise. The flight was a ...
39
votes
2answers
4k views

Is it possible to insist on having your ID checked at the police station, not in the street in Austria?

I am a non-EU citizen and I understand that I could be stopped in Austria and asked for my passport (and visa). Moreover, as far as I know, there are police officers in Austria dressed in civilian ...
38
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 ...
38
votes
4answers
3k views

Optimal packing method for bras?

This is a question for all the ladies of StackExchange. As a frequent traveller, I've found a few ways to pack bras better but I wanted to reach out to the peanut gallery and see if there was any ...
38
votes
4answers
5k views

What time is used on board a cruise ship?

Supposing you are on a cruise ship crossing the Atlantic, what time is used on board the boat? During the trip you will cross many time zones, so it is not feasible to constantly change your watch ...
38
votes
4answers
5k views

What rights do you have in China to appeal stuff being taken off you in transit?

I debated this, but I think it's askable. I just flew transit through Beijing. Did NOT enter the country. You still have to go through security though, but whatever, it just takes time. Until I got ...
37
votes
14answers
12k views

What on earth has yet to be explored?

To be clear, yes, we can see everything from Google Earth or other satellite imagery, but that doesn't mean we can explore it. GE can't see into forests, canyons and caves. Has every mountain been ...
37
votes
18answers
6k views

Am I expected to tip wait staff in Europe?

I will be travelling in western Europe, and I would like to dine at the restaurants there. Am I expected to tip the waiter/ waitress? How can I tip them when I am paying the bills by credit card? Do I ...
37
votes
7answers
13k views

Is it a good idea to mention to the USA immigration officer that I'm visiting my girlfriend?

I spent 5 months in the USA, and everything went without a problem. Now I'm spending my second month back in my country (the Czech Republic). In a week or two I want to go back to the USA for another ...
37
votes
7answers
10k views

What to do without underwear on a 4 day trip?

Ok, this might be a ridiculous question/situation but it's my situation. I'm at a football camp in boston until Friday, and I've realized I forgot to pack any underwear (I wear boxers), I have the ...
37
votes
10answers
22k views

Can I eat a beef burger in India?

I always heard that cows are holy in India. So I assumed that you can't eat any meat made of cows in India. But recently a friend told me, that it depends on the region. Not everywhere in India cows ...
37
votes
5answers
5k views

Where is the Asia-Europe divide and where can we cross it?

Where is the division between Europe and Asia? What are places where we can cross it? Are there roads that go from one continent to the other? Bonus particularly scenic locations or places of ...
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 ...
37
votes
7answers
4k views

How did security checks at airports change after September 11th, 2001?

I’m quite young – young enough that I have never flown before the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center in New York. I have doubts about the movie United 93: Was it possible to enter an ...
37
votes
8answers
20k views

How to adapt to Western Toilets from Indian-style toilets?

I am an Indian and have been using Indian style toilets for all my life, Now that I have a knee injury, I am forced to go to Western Style toilets. I find it really hard to empty my bowels in western ...
37
votes
3answers
3k views

Why do airplanes at every airport disembark at the left (port) side?

I travel by air a lot, and at virtually every airport I've ever been too, including where you disembark by stairs, as opposed to by jet bridge, the left-hand-doors are always used; and the ...
36
votes
8answers
8k views

Why do we fasten seatbelts for turbulence?

I have a hard time imagining turbulence strong enough to throw people out of their seats or flip an airliner upside down. Does this sometimes happen? Is there some other reason we wear seatbelts ...
36
votes
9answers
7k views

Different airlines, same destination, leave about the same time… why?

I've noticed that many times 2 or sometimes more airlines will have aircraft departing the same airport within minutes of each other heading for the same destination. For example at this moment UAL ...
36
votes
8answers
29k views

Can I keep my old passport when I have it renewed and a new one issued?

I have occasionally read about old passports people collect as keepsakes of their travels. Now, I just came across a mention of “all old passports” in a list of things to bring to a US visa interview ...
36
votes
8answers
42k 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
4answers
5k views

How do you know if a Japanese person means no when they say yes?

I have come across a few situations when a Japanese person will extend themselves beyond what they probably should to help people. I am often worried when asking them to do something that they will ...
36
votes
7answers
12k 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 ...
36
votes
5answers
2k views

Is it safe to travel in Japan considering the nuclear situation?

Are there any areas that should be avoided and are there any steps I should take to protect myself from radiation?
36
votes
3answers
4k views

Can I take an overnight bag into the theatre / cinema in London?

I'm travelling to London in early November for an overnight trip, during which I'm visiting the Odeon in Leicester Square and the Apollo Victoria. Will I have any problems taking a small overnight ...
36
votes
3answers
5k views

One foot in Belgium and the other in the Netherlands!

I come across this photo in Facebook where the borderline between Belgium and the Netherlands is drawn in the ground splitting a house in two sides one side at each country. One can literally put one ...
36
votes
5answers
6k views

Are international driving licences really necessary for any country?

When I first started travelling internationally about 20 years ago I was young and naive and bought an international driver's license for my trip to the United States. Then I discovered that it was ...

15 30 50 per page