SENIOR TRAVEL: KNOW ABOUT UNUSUAL LAWS

Jul 23rd, 2012 | By James E Becker | Category: Senior Travel

Read Up on Unusual Laws

You risk hefty fines – even jail time – if you accidentally break one of these rules in another place on our planet, so read on seniors.

Bite your tongue and…

Seniors, you had better bite your tongue when you visit Middleboro, Mass. Recently residents voted in a town meeting to impose a $20 fine on any publicly uttered swear words. While this may catch some travelers to the community by surprise, it’s not the only place the uttering of curse words is illegal. Here are a few more of the wackiest local laws I’ve found that senior visitors should be aware of before venturing out, and be careful to not spit just anywhere you would like.

Read on, cover up and pull up your pants


Laws governing clothing are common and should always be checked before traveling abroad. Qatar forbids indecent or revealing clothes, defined as “not covering shoulders and knees, tight or transparent clothes.” The Vatican City requires shoulder coverings and skirts or shorts to the knee in order to enter museums and churches. And, Castellammare di Stabia, south of Naples, has outlawed mini-skirts, low-cut jeans and too much cleavage, with violators risking a 300-euro fine. Thailand has a law demanding that you wear underwear at all times. I wonder who’s going to check on that one?

Raise Your Pants, Seniors

While fashions change, one thing hasn’t. People wearing their pants sagged below the top of their boxers has had public officials up in arms for years. Five metro cities around Atlanta have banned saggy pants, skirts and shorts – specifically those more than three inches below the wearer’s hips. In Forest Park, Ga., violators can even face a $1,000 fine. Montgomery County in Alabama levies a $100 fine against juveniles and $150 fine against adults with the slogan: “Raise your pants, raise your image.” Delcambre, La., was the first town to make it a crime to “show your underwear in public.” There you can face six months in jail for a violation.

Bring along a couple of cows just in case

Carmel, Ca., where Clint Eastwood was mayor, has a famous historic ban on woman wearing high heels. Though the law isn’t enforced, tourists can purchase a commemorative permit allowing them to wear the shoes. But, you won’t get away with that in the historic sites around Greece. After many of the country’s landmarks, like the Acropolis, were damaged in recent years by visitors, the government banned people from wearing high heels at the ancient locations.

Urban legend has it that the city of Blythe, CA, bans people from wearing cowboy boots unless they own at least two cows. However, even the city manager of Blythe has never heard of that rule being enforced, so you’re probably safe in those boots. Possible jail time if you spit on the public streets in Barcelona, Singapore, Vancouver, or Dodge City, Kan.

The best compromise, however, comes from Burlingame, CA. In that West Coast town spitting is illegal, except, understandably, in its natural habitat: on the baseball diamond. Now that you are fully aware of these laws, better mark your map.  I learned that Singapore is an orderly, clean city, but that’s no accident. Littering will cost you $1,000 and not flushing a public toilet could cost $500. Again… who’s checking on this?  And don’t smoke in public in Singapore. In fact, selling gum is illegal there as well. There are more, but I’ll save them for another blog.  These should  hold your attention for a while. jeb



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  1. [...] Recently I wrote a blog warning senior travelers of some weird laws that could get one in trouble if….  So, I found a few more for you to enjoy and consider.// [...]

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