Facts & Info

True or False: Traveling with Vibrators

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You’re heading out to see the world with your girlfriend. If she’s packing purring heat, beware.

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True or False

Vibrators have wreaked havoc at airports after being mistaken for bombs.

True! Just last September, an AirAsia flight in Thailand was delayed when bomb control was called to intercept a mysterious buzzing.

Turned out there was no bomb on board—just a small vibrator egg that was jumping around in someone’s luggage.

It wasn’t the first time an “adult novelty device” was under suspicion of terrorism! Another incident happened in Australia, when staff heard a mystery buzzing in an airport trashcan.

What to do? First, make sure vibrators are legal where you’re going. Second, remove the batteries for travel so they aren’t switched on accidentally!

Saudi Arabia has a sex shop offering a wide range of vibrators.

False. A sex shop was opened in Saudi Arabia, but you won’t find the range of supplies you’re used to. All products must comply with sharia law—so no porn, and no vibrators that look like genitals. The emphasis is on making marriage more satisfying and sensual. A lot of lingerie, for hubby’s eyes only, and massage oils.

You will also find a “chin massager,” whatever that is—wink wink—but it just might do the trick.

You’ll get arrested if you bring a vibrator to Alabama or Texas.

False. But with too much truth to be comfortable for a free country!

It’s rarely enforced—but not never! Section 43.21 of the Texas Penal Code prohibits the sale of “Obscene device[s]…including a dildo or artificial vagina, designed or marketed as useful primarily for the stimulation of  human genital organs.”

Alabama has the 1998 Anti-Obscenity Enforcement Act, criminalizing the sale of sex toys.

Both of these anti-sexual-pleasure dinosaurs are constantly challenged or protested. One radio host stood outside an Alabama courthouse and handed out free vibrators to people walking past!

An Egyptian specialty is an all-natural vibrator, made with live wasps.

False. If you’re heading to Egypt, don’t skip the pyramids and camel rides in hopes of this elusive buzz.

There have been variations on this in erotica and mythological lore. The reason is that the invention of the first vibrator is attributed to Cleopatra, who is said to have filled an empty gourd with live bees for an extra special kick.  

There’s no way to know if this legend has any truth to it, but it’s unlikely. I don’t doubt that Cleopatra liked a little pain and a little kink, but this is too impractical logistically for a woman who could have anything and anyone she wanted.

Sex toys are forbidden when traveling to the Maldives.

True. Don’t try to bring fetish gear, blow-up dolls, or even a vibrator when you head to the Maldives, Vietnam, India, Malaysia, Thailand… and the list goes on. So many countries have porn or obscenity laws that don’t allow sex toys that you’ll want to check with your airline every time you travel.

Some nations allow certain toys but not others, so be flexible. But do prepare to go without.

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Bon voyage!

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