007 Luxury Guide
Local Laws and Customs
Every country has its own laws and customs and as a visitor, you should always respect them. Follow our practical advice on how to avoid getting into trouble – either with the law or by offending the locals.
Always be sensitive to local customs when you’re abroad. It is often best to behave conservatively, at least until you know your way around. Avoid public displays of affection and dress modestly, particularly in places of worship.
Conservative strands of Islam and other religions exist throughout the world. When travelling in such areas, you should dress conservatively and take care not to offend the local culture or religious belief, especially during the holy month of Ramadan or other religious festivals, or if you intend to visit places of worship.
During Ramadan, Muslims are not permitted to eat, drink or smoke during daylight hours. To avoid offence, you should not eat, drink or smoke in public during this time.
Women travellers can face particular issues around security and dealing with the religious and cultural beliefs of the countries they visit (especially if they’re travelling alone). We advise you to do some research before you travel, so you know what to expect from the country you’re visiting. Always take basic personal safety precautions; don’t walk alone at night or in quiet areas, don’t leave your food or drink unattended, keep details of your travel plans and where you’re staying to yourself, dress modestly if you’re in a Muslim or socially conservative country.
Homosexual activity is illegal in many countries. In some other countries, it is not against the law but is still seen as an unacceptable life choice. Find out the legal situation before you travel, and be discreet during your trip.
While you’re abroad, you’re subject to local laws, including ones that may seem harsh by Irish standards. If you have to deal with any legal matters, we strongly advise you to get professional legal advice. The nearest Embassy or Consulate can usually provide a list of lawyers, if required.
In many countries, you’re legally required to carry personal identification with you. Unless the law states you must carry your original passport at all times, we advise you to carry a photocopy of the relevant page and keep the original in a safe place.
Illegal drug use (no matter what the drug) usually carries stiff penalties, including fines, long prison terms, and in some countries, even the death penalty. Be careful with your luggage and belongings when you’re travelling and avoid any contact with prohibited drugs.
In some countries, there may be restrictions on importing over-the-counter or prescription medication. So check with the nearest Embassy or Consulate of the country you’re planning to visit.
Never drink in countries where it is prohibited. In other countries, always use alcohol responsibly. Drinking in public areas is often illegal and public drunkenness may be dealt with severely by the authorities.
Don’t leave your drinks unattended and never accept drinks from strangers. Don’t drink and drive, as the penalties can be severe. You should also avoid getting into any vehicle with a driver who you think may have been drinking.