The End of a Vacation / The Beginning of a Nightmare
Well one of the perks of living in Europe is all the travel opportunities that available to us. But the same goes when you are in the USA but even easier because you do not have worry about what travel documents or what laws they may have because they are pretty much the same between states. The sad part is that we just do not travel as much in the US because we take it for granted that it will always be there for us to visit.
I was reading the military newspaper this morning and there was an article about one such case that unfortunately a US traveler did not know what is considered a souvenir and what is not.
He and his wife where in Turkey a week or so ago for a week long holiday and like many of us when going to the beach you take a few sea shells, little pieces of glass and pottery or rocks for souvenirs. I have 4 kids so I know all to well what great CHEAP souvenirs they are!! Unfortunately in this case when they were going through security in the airport to fly back to Germany where they live, some of the “stones” they are got according to the Turkish government they were considered historical artifacts. He was taken to the airport security and then eventually to the local police stationed and charged with trying to take historical artifacts out of the country. His wife was allowed to leave the country but he is now in hotel with a travel ban from leaving the country pending the court hearings. He could face up to a year in prison because of this.
So long story short, know what the local laws when you traveling! Know the local embassy or consulate number just in case of emergencies like this! Have extra copies of passports in case of emergencies like this!
To learn more about Jason’s story, check out his blog HERE that he is doing while in the hotel awaiting the court verdict on whether it is going to trail.
Do you collect souvenirs when you go on vacations? Me, small snow globes.