Estimated Time to Read: 3 minutes

Many of us are usually cautious, law-abiding drivers. However, there are some arcane or just plainly strange traffic laws in various countries around the world, that may very easily earn you a very costly ticket or even land you in jail. Most of these strange laws are clearly outdated, but still exist, and are enforced.

Here is an outline of some of the world’s strangest traffic-laws

Tennessee, United States

If you are much like Ishmael, bent on articulating a vendetta against some quasi-mystical whale, then Tennessee is clearly not the place for you. This is not just because it is a landlocked state, but it has some ferocious laws against the killing of whales. For example you are not allowed to shoot a whale while on a moving vehicle. So if you are planning on doing a whale-targeted drive-by, you are more likely to run into the law.

Alabama, United States

Tennessee, United States is also a state with some strange laws. For example, you are not allowed to drive while blindfolded. One certainly has to wonder about the bizarre sequence of events that led to the enactment of this law, which to many generally leans towards common-sense.

Redlands, California

If you wish to drive a car while in Redlands, United States, you will need to solicit the services of a lantern-carrying person, so as to walk in front of the car. This is kind of like a down-scaled modern-day version of Paul Revere. However, you can tip them to get them to announce that ‘The British are coming’ every few miles.

United Kingdom

Strange laws are not only present in the United States, but also in the United Kingdom which has a few bizarre laws of its own. One example is of the law that states that all Hackney carriages have to carry a bag of oats, or a bale of hay. So the next time you intend to hire a cab in London, it may be important for you to demand to see a bale of hay, just to make sure that you are on the right side of the law.


This is a country that is big on security, and as such, all drivers are forbidden to drive without proper working windscreen wipers. However, having windscreens at all is optional due to numerous legal reasons.


Before attempting to drive off in your car in Denmark, the law obligates you to look under the car for children. This is a law that is not taken for granted in the country.

Beijing, China

If you are presumably driving in Beijing, and inevitably come across a pedestrian-crossing, you are not allowed to stop as you will be breaking the law. A run-in with the law in this case will be the last thing you need, as you will have to know how to pronounce the word ‘pedestrian’ in Chinese for you to even begin explaining the reasons for your actions.


Cyprus is a popular destination for British tourists, especially during the summer, and it is with good reason. Firstly, it is sunny and the beaches are wonderful, and secondly, the people there are very friendly. However, Cyprus is also extremely hot. In this regard, you might be tempted to buy and drink a bottle of cold water while driving as it’s fine right? Wrong, it is against the law to drink anything while driving. So if you are planning to drive while in Cyprus, it’s always a good idea to hydrate first before sailing off.


In Spain, there is a strong belief in the Murphy’s Law which states that everything that can go wrong, will go wrong. As such, the authorities have added a law of their own. It ensures that everyone with prescription glasses carries an extra pair in his or her car, just in case something bad happens to the first pair while on the road.

We hope the article was entertaining.

The author, Hugo Riddle, writes about travel topics and destinations. he lives in London, England and writes for