The top 12 unusual laws of the UAE that every tourist should know

The top 12 unusual laws of the UAE that every tourist should know

The United Arab Emirates is known all over the world not only by advanced engineering solutions but also by their conservatism. Because of the unusual rules and traditions for non-Muslims, tourists here often find themselves in ridiculous situations and sometimes even in a police station. It is best to familiarize yourself with local laws in advance so that you do not pay heavy fines or, even worse, end up in jail during your holidays.

Arrested Tourists

In 2017, the British Jamie Harron was arrested for 3 months for indecent behavior in a public place. According to the prosecution, he put his hand on another man’s bottom in a bar. According to Harron, this happened by chance: he was just trying to keep his balance by not paying his drink. The man was released the next day but spent more than $ 50 thousand on legal fees.

For the import of pornographic products, drugs, and even pork, you also run the risk of trouble. In 2007, a Japanese engineer was arrested at Dubai airport after the customs agents found 77 pornographic DVDs in his bag. The lawyers said that he brought the records for personal use, not knowing that this was contrary to the laws of the Emirates. The court of the first instance in Dubai has established that a one-month prison sentence is assigned to a businessman.

In the same year, DJ Raymond Bingham was sentenced to four years in prison for forgetting to remove 2 grams of hashish from his trousers. He served part of the sentence and later received the pardon.
Prescription drugs and painkillers can also ruin your holiday: in 2014, a 16-year-old Indian boy was arrested for buying a pound of poppy seeds for a mother who wanted to use them in the kitchen.

Dress Code in the United Arab Emirates

In the United Arab Emirates, it is advisable that women dress extremely modestly: you will not be fined for shorts, short skirts, plunging necklines and shirts outside of the beach areas, but such clothes are guaranteed as a cause of universal condemnation. In shopping centers constantly reminded that it is necessary to comply with the dress code.

In a bathing suit, you can only appear on the hotels’ beaches and swimming pools. Topless sunbathing – it’s strictly forbidden. In 2008, 79 people were arrested for this.

Men should also keep an eye on their wardrobe: shorts and t-shirts are allowed only within the beach areas.

The ban on eating in public places

In the Emirates, you should not eat and drink in public during the day during Ramadan, regardless of whether you are Muslim or not. According to recent news, at least one foreign couple has recently been fined for drinking juice at a service station. For restaurants in hotels, this rule does not apply. Furthermore, in public transport, you cannot eat and drink at all. For this, you can pay a fine of $ 30.

You want to live together – get married

According to the laws of the United Arab Emirates, only married couples can enter into intimate relationships and even sleep in the same bed in Dubai. In fact, when you check in at a hotel with a boyfriend or girlfriend, hotels do not require any documents confirming your relationship. However, the authorities are serious about this problem: in 2016, the British woman was arrested for extra-marital sex after she reported the rape to the police.

Pay attention to feelings

In the Emirates, you cannot kiss, hug and hold hands in public places. This is considered “inappropriate behavior”. In 2005, an English couple was imprisoned for a month for a kiss in a restaurant.

You cannot use vulgar language even in WhatsApp

In the United Arab Emirates, it is strictly forbidden to swear. Using obscene language is considered a crime. You may be imprisoned for up to a year for violation or fined nearly $ 3,000. If you show someone on the middle finger, you are immediately deported.

The rule on obscene language and gestures also applies to messages on WhatsApp or any other social network or instant messenger. You can receive a fine of up to $ 68,000, imprisonment or deportation.

Do not touch someone else’s phone

In the United Arab Emirates, it is illegal to “invade the privacy of another person” using any gadget and social network. The penalty for this is 6 months imprisonment or a fine of $ 28 thousand to $ 137 thousand.

In 2016, in the emirate of Ajman, a woman was accused of violating the privacy law in relation to her husband. The Arab court of Ajman sentenced the woman to deportation and fined $ 30,000 for having read her husband’s correspondence on the phone, which helped convict him of adultery.

Fundraising or fund raising difficult

Fundraising for charitable purposes is a very difficult process in the United Arab Emirates. Fundraising must first be approved by the Department for Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities (IACAD), otherwise, fundraising violates the UAE Income Tax Act. This can lead to imprisonment, fines ranging from $ 68 thousand to $ 136 thousand and even deportation.

It is forbidden to use VPN connections

According to the laws of the United Arab Emirates, those who use VPN connections can suffer fines ranging from $ 136 thousand to $ 544 thousand. In the Emirates, a false IP address cannot be used. Therefore, if you try to access a blocked site or download copyrighted material, you may run into problems.

You cannot drive a dirty car

Given the fact that sandstorms often pass through the United Arab Emirates, it would not be surprising to see dirty cars in the country. But in fact, in the Emirates, you will not see a single dirty machine. This is because, according to the law, the dirty cars are towed regularly and the owners are fined $ 817. In addition, you can only wash the cars on special washing machines, in your backyard – it is forbidden.

It is forbidden to photograph people without their permission

In the United Arab Emirates, it is very strict to protect the privacy of citizens and, therefore, to photograph anyone without their knowledge or to forbid consent. If you put these photos on social networks, this is an even more serious crime. According to the laws, you can be fined up to $ 136 thousand and imprisoned for up to six months, although in practice these sentences are much stricter.

You cannot take pictures and distribute photos of roads or accidents

Photographing in the United Arab Emirates is generally dangerous. Apart from the fact that photographing military buildings, courts and buildings are prohibited, it is also strictly forbidden to take off an accident. The penalty for this is from $ 13 thousand to $ 816 thousand and deportation.

It is forbidden to spread rumors

Perhaps the most interesting rule in the UAE: the rumors are punishable here in accordance with the law of the United Arab Emirates. The gossip, especially in social networks, can lead to imprisonment for a period of 3 years and a fine of 272 thousand dollars, because in the country they are trying to fight those who “are harmful to social peace and public order”.

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