© 145/Emmanuel Aguirre/Ocean/Corbis
May 12, 2015

Tired of its reputation for producing disrespectful tourists, China is taking a stand against Chinese travelers behaving badly, instituting a rule that comes with serious (if vague) consequences. Though the rule has been around since 2013, it has only recently been put to the test.

The rule—which was defined in a booklet titled “Guidebook for Civilized Tourism”—allows authorities to blacklist a traveler for “unruly, disrespectful, or illegal behaviors,” and gives them the go-ahead to notify police, customs, border security, transportation agencies, credit agencies, and just about anyone else who could make your vacation an absolute nightmare.

Earlier this month, four people were officially blacklisted, two of which were placed on a return flight to Bangkok after making trouble (read: pouring hot instant noodles on and fighting with an attendant—seriously) on an AirAsia plane. Both are on China’s “terrible travelers” list until 2017. The third blacklisted tourist pried open emergency doors while their flight was taxiing, resulting in a 15-day detainment and a two-year blacklisting. The fourth was caught climbing on historical statues for a photo opp—a crime that got him 10 years on the list.

Of course, misbehaving tourists are everywhere—just ask the men who recently broke an 18th-century Italian sculpture taking a selfie.

Erika Owen is the Audience Engagement Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram at @erikaraeowen.

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