Do you know the customs and laws for you holiday destination?
When planning a holiday it's important to be aware of the local customs and laws for the country that you are travelling to. From driving abroad to what not to wear make sure you know what you can and can't do to avoid embarrassment or even imprisonment when away on holiday.We have listed some of the most common customs and laws that you may encounter on your travels. Further information can be found on the FCO Website.
Egypt - only drink in licensed places
Egypt is predominantly an Islamic country. It is important that all visitors respect local traditions, customs, laws and religions at all times. When visiting rural areas, mosques and souks (markets) it is important to dress modestly by ensuring that women cover their legs and upper arms and that men cover their chests. Public displays of affections are also frowned upon and drinking anywhere other than in a licensed restaurant or bar is not allowed and can lead to arrest.
France- legal age drivers only
If you are planning on driving over to France you must be over the age of 18 and have a valid UK driving license, insurance and vehicle documents. You are not permitted to drive at 17-even if you hold a valid UK license. It is also a legal requirement to keep a warning triangle and reflective jacket in your vehicle.
Greece- best behaviour please
When in public visitors should maintain high standards of public behaviour. Disruptive or indecent behaviour will not go down well with Greek police especially if excessive alcohol consumption is a contributing factor. It also worth remembering that if you purchase pirate CD's or DVD's you could be imprisoned-they might not work out to be a bargain buy after all.
Italy- lets shake on it
In Italy you may see most of the people greeting each other with a kiss on the cheek, however its worth remembering that this is only done by people who know each other, as a tourist it's probably wise to shake hands instead. It is an offence to sit on steps or to eat and drink in the immediate vicinity of main churches and public buildings.
Spain- make sure you carry ID
Like many tourists who visit Spain every year you may decide to hire a car and drive around region. Spanish law states that children under the age of 12 are not allowed to sit in the front passenger seat of a car. Also if you are unlucky enough to break down you must wear a reflective jacket-failure to do so could result in a heavy fine. When in Spain you must carry identity with you at all times and make sure that important documents are kept safe.
Thailand- carry your passport with you
In Thailand it is important to observe appropriate dress code when visiting temples and other places of worship. Men are not allowed to wear shorts and women should make sure that they cover their arms and legs. It is also essential to carry your passports with you at all times.
United Arab Emirates- keep yourselves covered
Many tourists forget that the United Arab Emirates have strict customs and laws that must be followed. Public displays of affection can land you in trouble as well as swearing and drinking when in public. Eating in public during Ramadan can lead to a jail sentence, even if you are not a Muslim. Ladies should keep shoulders covered and shorts or skirts below the knee, men should also avoid wearing sleeveless tops and shorts that are above the knee.