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Dubai Travel Tips

Is it true you can be arrested for kissing in Dubai?

Kissing in Dubai

You certainly can!

Holding hands for a married couple is tolerated but kissing and petting are considered an offence to public decency

The Dubai code

Many countries have dumb laws on the books that are rarely if ever enforced. The problem in Dubai, as a crossroads between East and West, is that there are plenty of conservative Muslims who will be genuinely offended if they see you kissing your wife in public and will rush off to find a police officer.

I am not kidding, this actually happens. A British couple were detained for a month when they greeted each other at a restaurant with a peck on the cheek. They were not drunk, they were not snogging, they were not gay but, clearly, a form of greeting that is common in Europe was enough to upset the Emirati woman who complained.

Of course, you will probably be fine, over 15 million visitors to Dubai every year have no problems at all. Just be aware that different rules and social expectations apply here.

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