Worldwide Weird Laws

What’s the weirdest law you’ve ever heard?


Kaelyn Rickels

An infographic showing weird laws from different continents.

Laws can be weird, wacky, spontaneous, funny, confusing, superstitious, downright funny, and different. 

The world is divided in many ways, and because of these separations of people, laws differ. No two places have the same governments or lawmakers. This leads to great diversity in both their way of life and their laws.

For example, in Singapore, citizens are not allowed to sell chewing gum or even have it in their possession. Absolutely no one, not even other countries, are allowed to import, trade, buy or bring chewing gum to Singapore. If they do, they get the penalty of paying $100,000 or two years of jail time. This law was enacted because of the overwhelming maintenance problems chewing gum caused. People would stick it to doors, handles, keyholes, buttons, tables, etc.

Another interesting law from Singapore is that people cannot play instruments or sing in public if they’re annoying others. Technically, people can do these things, but if their audience finds them to be extremely bad at music, or someone’s feeling spiteful, a musician could get a $1,000 fine or 3 months imprisonment for it.

In Rome, Italy, people must walk their dogs once a day. In Turin, Italy, people are supposed to walk their dog three times a day, with a fine of $525-$625 if they don’t. Maybe in summer, this law wouldn’t be so bad, but when it’s cold and icy, that would be a terrible experience.

In France, people must buy a burial plot pre-death. After someone’s death, there’s no way to throw them in jail, fine them, (etc.), so they choose to not bury them in France. So, if someone wants a proper burial in France, they should make sure they have a coffin to be buried in.

The weirdest on this list comes from Switzerland. People cannot hike naked.

There has only been one incident where this law has been used against someone, earning them a $110 fine. Years ago, a man was found hiking naked in Switzerland, and ever since then, it’s been illegal.

Apparently, people are not allowed to ride a cow while drunk in Scotland. There are many questions following this, especially because the penalty is a year’s imprisonment, and there are no specific details about it or cases that have happened.

Short but sweet, the last of the laws is in Malawi, Africa. Decreed as to not ‘foul the air’, people are not allowed to fart there. They suggest if someone wishes to fart, to find a bathroom and do it in there. No one has ever been convicted of this, though the penalty is some extension of imprisonment. So, in the end, people do probably fart in public in Malawi and just are never caught by law enforcement, or the law enforcement simply doesn’t prioritize enforcing this law. 

Hopefully, people now know what to do and what not to do when and if they decide to travel because it seems you can find weird laws all over the world.

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