Questions tagged [legal]

Questions regarding permitted or forbidden activities in various places, including unforeseen technicalities.

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149
votes
4answers
20k 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 ...
144
votes
11answers
48k views

Took airline plane blanket by accident; didn't realize it was forbidden. What should I do?

I'm very new to traveling in general. When I flew on a long flight, the airline gave us blankets and pillows. I, having no idea that I was supposed to leave the blanket behind, took it as I collected ...
132
votes
3answers
24k views

Canadian citizen, on US no-fly list. What can I do in order to be allowed on flights which go through US airspace?

My father and I, both Canadian citizens, were denied to board a direct Turkish Airlines flight from Istanbul to Toronto non-stop without any prior warning or information. Literally, at the gate, we ...
111
votes
11answers
30k views

How can I convince airport screeners to stop asking why I prefer pat-downs?

At a London airport, a security screener ordered my granddad to the full-body scanner. As a Luddite, he requested a full pat-down. But this screener, and 3 others, kept rebuffing him: Screener: Why ...
85
votes
11answers
17k views

When flying on a very tight schedule, are you obligated to run to make it to the next gate on a connection?

In reference to this question, let's say you've bought a single ticket with a 45-minute layover. Your plane arrives on time but the next gate is so far away you have to run to make it. Assuming you ...
77
votes
7answers
17k views

How to book a flight if my passport doesn't state my gender?

I am asking on behalf of my friend. My friend doesn't have a gender (in other words they are gender-neutral) and on their new passport their gender is represented as X (indeterminate/unspecified). ...
76
votes
5answers
45k 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 ...
74
votes
1answer
17k views

No Facebook account, will I be able to visit the US?

I heard that the US immigration is asking people for their Facebook or any other social media logins, or at least are planning to do so. I value my privacy so I don't even have a Facebook account and ...
73
votes
4answers
23k views

Is standing actually illegal in Venice?

The Venice tourism site lists a bunch of rules. Okay, no swimming in the canals, and littering is also not allowed (duh?). But there's something baffling to me here: “No standing at any time” – ...
69
votes
2answers
12k views

Do I break the law as a foreigner in Germany if an embassy keeps my passport to stick a visa in?

An Armenian national lives in Germany and holds a permanent residence (Niederlassungserlaubnis). This is a sticker in their Armenian passport. They have applied at the UK embassy in Berlin to get a ...
66
votes
7answers
31k views

Caught speeding 111 Mph (179 km/h) in California. How can I settle the case with the court?

I was driving to Los Angeles from the Bay area, and was on a wonderful, straight road with no cars in sight. For whatever reason (doesn't matter) I was briefly speeding around 111mph (179 km/h), and ...
66
votes
7answers
28k 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 ...
65
votes
11answers
22k views

Texas, USA speed ticket as a European citizen, already left the country

I had an interesting experience in the US while speeding. I'll put the full scenario in quotes, as I'm not sure if the whole story really adds to the question. We are unsure of what to do with the ...
63
votes
17answers
19k views

Can a tourist shoot a gun in the USA?

We're planning a holiday to the USA. In our country (UK) guns are strongly controlled so I wondered if we would be able to easily visit a range to have the experience of shooting and interacting with ...
62
votes
6answers
12k views

Refused entry into Schengen after Ryanair checked passport. Now the airline wants me to pay a fine. What are my options?

I was travelling from London to Kaunas (Lithuania) and was refused entry because I did not have a biometric passport, even though a Ryanair officer at the gate before boarding checked my passport, ...
60
votes
4answers
248k 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 ...
59
votes
10answers
20k 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, ...
59
votes
8answers
9k 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 ...
55
votes
7answers
20k views

What are the legal consequences for a tourist who runs out of gas on the Autobahn?

There are many international travelers and tourists that enjoy driving cars on Germany's Autobahn every day, some of them would be unaware that running out of gas on the autobahn is illegal. ...
54
votes
6answers
18k views

Is it legal to travel with a suitcase full of physical cash (worthless banknotes) from Venezuela?

I want to buy some cash. https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-45246409 These banknotes are so cool, they are worth much more as collectibles. Is it legal to travel with a suitcase full of ...
54
votes
5answers
15k views

What does this British road sign mean?

BBC Radio Solent tweeted a picture of a road closure (apparently near Winchester): In the background, there is a road sign with two red lights on and a yellow "symbol". What does it mean?
54
votes
3answers
6k views

Does it make sense to use a kayak or canoe in Venice?

By does it make sense I mean whether it is at all legal, safe to an acceptable degree, technically possible (and at least a bit enjoyable) to use own canoe or kayak in the water canals of Venice. I'd ...
54
votes
3answers
12k views

Can I travel with cremated remains (father's ashes) from USA to India?

Recently our beloved father passed away in the USA. We have already performed his cremation, and now we are planning to take the cremated remains to India. We don't know anything regarding the ...
53
votes
11answers
59k 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 ...
53
votes
4answers
14k views

Is it legal to bring board games (made of wood) to Australia?

I am traveling and I would like to bring some local board games (all made from timber and marble) that I really liked back to Australia. However, I found this article. Relevent bit: All wooden, ...
53
votes
12answers
102k 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. ...
51
votes
10answers
19k 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 ...
51
votes
9answers
99k 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. ...
51
votes
1answer
10k views

UAE now banning VPN access - fines of up to $545,000? Any workarounds?

According to a few news articles, the UAE is passing a new law with heavy penalties for using a VPN. Another report says: Travelers also come under this law and if caught using any VPNs could ...
50
votes
3answers
12k views

Why do I need to report to the police when I visit Indonesia?

I will go to Indonesia to marry my fiancee. She tells me that when I arrive there, at her village called Cianjur, I have to report to the police. I don't understand these procedures well so I am ...
50
votes
1answer
10k 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?
49
votes
6answers
19k 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 told ...
49
votes
2answers
99k 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?
49
votes
3answers
6k views

What citizenship/place of birth would a child born on an airplane have?

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 ...
49
votes
1answer
4k views

Is the 5 euro coin accepted anywhere?

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 ...
48
votes
6answers
10k views

In US rental car terms and conditions, what exactly is a “regularly maintained road?”

Many rental car companies have terms and conditions such as Hertz: Generally, Hertz vehicles, including 4-wheel drives, are to be operated only on regularly maintained roads. Off-road use is a ...
48
votes
2answers
57k 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 ...
47
votes
3answers
22k 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.
47
votes
1answer
13k views

Why can't we use the toilet when the train isn't moving in some countries?

I am not sure if the sign in the toilet said that we shouldn't use it if the train was not moving or that we shouldn't do so if the train was at the station.
47
votes
3answers
29k 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? ...
46
votes
5answers
125k 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 ...
45
votes
6answers
79k 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 ...
44
votes
5answers
15k views

Is it illegal to take a piece of the Berlin Wall?

As a keepsake for my traveling in Germany, I would like to take a pebble from the Berlin Wall-is it illegal (or perhaps frowned upon) to do so? I'm aware that they sell (presumably fake) pieces in ...
44
votes
8answers
21k 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 ...
43
votes
7answers
33k views

Can I fly with white powder in a 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 ...
43
votes
6answers
8k 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 ...
42
votes
4answers
20k 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
5answers
15k views

What happens on the immigration gate if a passenger lost their fingerprints?

This is not about me but my science teacher back in my junior high school. After performing scientific experiments for most of his lifetime, he lost all his fingerprints and bragged about it. However,...
40
votes
2answers
9k views

Which US states have criminalized hitchhiking?

Are there U.S. states where it is illegal to hitchhike? I have looked around and have not found any site which has substantiated their claims with up to date sources.
40
votes
7answers
83k 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"...