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This insider tip will help you avoid trouble while you're traveling.

Talia Avakian
March 07, 2018

If you’re gearing up to head on a spring-break getaway, officials from the U.S. Department of State have some advice you’ll want to keep in mind.

Laws in other countries can vary greatly, which is why state department officials are urging travelers to check the local rules before heading off to their destinations.

Common spring break actions that are legal in some countries could get you arrested in others, like consuming alcohol in public spaces.

The U.S. State Department's Bureau of Consular Affairs also noted on Twitter that "many countries criminalize same-sex relations."

To find out what the local regulations are in the country you're visiting, the U.S. State Department has a country page set up for every country around the globe that highlights entry and exit requirements, local laws and customs, and health risks. 

You can also find the contact information for the closest U.S. embassy or consulate, should you run into any emergencies while on your trip.

Not knowing the local laws where you’re heading can end up costing you. Travelers abroad have faced everything from a year in prison and $750 fines for inappropriate public dancing to jail time for bringing in the wrong prescription medications.

If you do happen to get arrested during your trip, you’ll want to reach out to the U.S. embassy or consulate, both of which can notify friends and family back home of your situation.

Though department officials cannot take a traveler out of jail, they can assist you with a list of local attorneys who speak English in the country and help arrange visits during your time of detainment.

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