Dear travellers, you may be about to go abroad. So I have to warn you: a lot of things that you think are harmless are simply illegal in certain countries or foreign localities. It’s better that you know before you end up in prison or have a nice sum of money taken away from you for some dumb reason. Rest assured though: if these absurd laws are still in force, most of them remain inapplicable and unenforced despite everything. Phew.
1. Until 2021 it was illegal to own more than 50kg of potatoes in Western Australia
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A 1946 law authorized the Potato Marketing Corporation to stop and search any vehicle suspected of carrying more than 50kg of potatoes in Western Australia. The trick was abolished in 2021, but no one had applied it for a long time. At the same time, who drives with more than 50kg of potatoes in his car? 49, at the limit, we can understand, but 50? Must be crazy.
2. It is forbidden to wear camouflage in Trinidad and Tobago
The Caribbean island state prohibits any civilian from wearing an outfit that resembles that of its army. In fact, the law leaves room for interpretation, and suddenly all camouflage-colored outfits are prohibited in the country. Anyway, we’ve always said it: camouflage outfits are ugly, so don’t overdo it.
3. In Germany it is not forbidden to escape from prison, but it is forbidden to escape with one’s uniform
In some countries, such as the Netherlands or Germany, escape from prison is not prohibited. This means that an inmate who manages to dress up and gets busted outside won’t incur any additional jail time (unless he hurt people or farted things to get out, of course). We’ll just put him back in jail to finish his interrupted sentence. But in Germany, the prisoner who escapes with his uniform will be prosecuted for theft since the outfit does not belong to him. It’s fair enough in the end.
4. In Arizona, it’s illegal to have a sleeping donkey in a tub.
In 1924, a merchant let his donkey sleep in an old bathtub, but there was a flood in the city and the bathtub turned into a boat, which took the donkey miles from where it started. Apparently it was awful for everyone to save him, so the guys preferred to write a law so that it would never happen again.
5. In South Australia and Tasmania, it is illegal to offer a no-questions-asked reward for the return of stolen property
What does it mean ? It means that basically, when something has been stolen from you, you cannot give a reward to the person who brings it back to you without asking him any questions. Otherwise, thieves might get away with returning what they stole without having to deal with the law. Yes, it’s very weird.
6. In Turin, it is illegal not to walk your dog at least 3 times a day
Being a bad master who does not walk his dog often enough is liable to a fine of 500 euros. So you’re going to ask me “but how do they find out who is in violation? », and the answer will not please you: denunciation. A Turinese who thinks his neighbor does not walk his dog enough can simply report him to the police. Good atmosphere.
7. In Scotland, it’s illegal to refuse someone to use your toilet if they ask you to.
Can you imagine if someone came knocking on your door to ask you to use your toilet and you had to say yes? Well in Scotland, it is. Well, after that, it probably never happens, but it’s good to know if you have a pressing desire in the land of thistles.
8. Chewing gum is illegal in Singapore.
And quite simply to import chewing gum into the territory, unless it has a therapeutic use. The goal is simply to avoid ending up with disgusting chewing gum stuck all over the territory, which we can understand. But hey, hitting a big fine and community service for a chewing gum, it’s still a bit hot.
9. It is illegal to die in Parliament in England
In the stupid law genre, this one arises very high. If you feel like dying in Parliament, think twice about it.
10. It is forbidden to wear loud shoes in Capri
That’s in case you decided to tap dance to Hervé Vilard.
11. In Germany, it’s illegal to run out of gas on the autobahn
Because, of course, when you run out of gas, it’s because you wanted to (not at all). Nevertheless, it can cost you between 30 and 70 euros in fines if you come across a reluctant policeman.
12. In Alabama, it is illegal to walk around with an ice cream cone in the back pocket of your pants.
Apparently, the law was invented to deal with horse thieves who used this technique to lure the horse without needing to touch it, just to avoid being accused of theft. It’s cra-cra but super clever.
13. In Thailand, it is forbidden to leave the house without wearing underwear.
Frankly, if there is neither clothing nor underwear, it can be understood, but if it’s just the underwear, what can it do to them? Nobody sees it if you don’t wear underpants under your pants.
14. In Texas, it is illegal to own 6 or more sex toys.
Five is fine. Six, you are a delinquent. They are very strong Texans.
15. In Pennsylvania, it’s illegal to sing in a bathtub.
A law that could be described as life-saving when you see the extremely poor vocal level of some of the neighbors (even roommates). It’s decided, I’m going to move to Pennsylvania.