Vacation in the USA? Stay on the Right Side of the Law
As an Indian citizen, it’s exciting to travel to foreign countries for a vacation. One of the most interesting places to visit in the United States. Many Indians now have relatives who have moved there, so it’s natural to want to pay them a visit when time and funds allow. The legal system is very different from India… Read More »
As an Indian citizen, it’s exciting to travel to foreign countries for a vacation. One of the most interesting places to visit in the United States. Many Indians now have relatives who have moved there, so it’s natural to want to pay them a visit when time and funds allow.
The legal system is very different from India and varies from state to state, so due care must be taken to not fall afoul of the law.
Here are some quick tips to keep you out of trouble.
It may seem trivial, but even crossing the street is not the same between India and the United States. In India, crossing where you like is not uncommon. The streets can be hectic and disorganized, leading people to just make their way through traffic.
However, with the U.S., it’s not the same. There are designated traffic junctions and crosswalks where you should cross main streets when indicated to do so. Crossing where you like is called jaywalking and is illegal. To avoid getting into hot water with the local police over a minor issue, take care where you cross the road.
Avoid Drinking in Public
Public intoxication is taken seriously in the States. In some states, it’s even illegal to have an open can of alcohol (known as an ‘open container’) in your hand on a public street.
Finding out the specific law as it relates to the state that you’re visiting – perhaps the one where your relatives or friends reside – is not practical for visitors. Therefore, if you want to enjoy some alcoholic beverages, either drink at a local bar where it’s easy to get back from, or purchase a six-pack at a convenience store and consume the beverage in your hotel room or at the friend’s place.
Hiring a Car?
Car hire is a popular idea. Just like with India, the United States is vast. Distances from one location to another are usually too far to walk. Local transportation tends to be slow and traffic jams for hours are not uncommon.
You have a choice; you can get an Uber or Lyft taxi using their mobile app to book a ride or hire a car. If you choose to hire a car, then it pays to be careful when doing so.
With driving a car in the U.S., there’s zero tolerance for drinking and driving. It’s strictly upheld too. Questionable driving often leads to traffic stops and a sobriety test including a test with a breathalyzer. As Detroit law firms will advise you, refusing to take the breathalyzer won’t help if you’re over the legal limit because it can lead to civil infractions, fines, and more.
The last thing you need is to get in trouble with the law while abroad. It quickly becomes far more complicated to resolve than you’d imagine, especially as a foreign visitor. Steer well clear of any conflicts and don’t take unnecessary risks. Also, don’t be surprised at the cost differences between the U.S. and India – do some research on local pricing to avoid sticker shock too. You don’t want to need to rely on relatives or friends because you miscalculated.