Brunei travel advice

Local laws reflect the fact that Brunei is an Islamic country. You should dress modestly and respect local traditions, customs, laws and religions at all times, especially during the holy month of Ramadan, or if you intend to visit religious areas.In 2015, the holy month of Ramadan is expected to start on 18 June and finish on 18 July.

On 22 October 2013 a new Sharia criminal code was enacted, which will be implemented in phases from 1 May 2014. The new code sets out severe corporal penalties and punishments, including death, for a variety of offences and in some cases will apply to non-Muslims.

Phase 1 was implemented from 1 May 2014, with offences punishable with a fine, imprisonment or both. Phases 2 and 3, which include more severe penalties, are subject to further legislation before implementation.Adultery involving a Muslim and close proximity between the sexes is deemed an offence under Bruneian Law and may attract a fine, imprisonment or both. In some circumstances, it may also attract corporal punishment.

Under the new Sharia criminal code it is also an offence for any person who consumes any food, drink or tobacco in public during the fasting hours of Ramadan. You could be fined up to B$4,000 and/or imprisoned for up to 1 year.

There are severe penalties for all drug offences in Brunei including, in some cases, the death penalty. Other crimes may attract caning and lengthy prison sentences.

The sale of alcohol in Brunei is prohibited. Non-Muslims over 17 years of age may import duty free two bottles of wine or spirits and twelve cans of beer on entry into Brunei, but must declare them to the customs authorities on arrival and consume them in private.

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