Loving in the Arab World isn’t an easy affair. It comes with its own set of rules, metrics and tacit codes of conduct you have to loosely abide by. Although in theory most aspects of PDA are legally forbidden, in practice, you might be able to get away with a handful of things if you know your way around– always at your own risk though.
Having to navigate through the weight of religion, society and the very-harnessing laws of public decency can be quite tricky but don’t necessarily translate to not being able to express love publicly. Awareness of your surroundings is key, things happen fast and trust us, you don’t want to find yourself getting shouted at by a random grandma’ off the streets. I’ve been there, done that. My conclusion? It’s not a fun experience.
Out with your partner? Allow us to 101 you through it.
Avoid kissing in front of big crowds
You can get away with a peck but not a French kiss – that business can honestly wait until home. Depending on where you are exactly in the Arab World, a quick smooch won’t get you into too much drama but it’s really better to be safe than sorry, so quite frankly it might be better to stick to holding hands. But like said, pay attention to your surroundings as it’s not that uncommon for people to get themselves arrested. The UAE and Egypt are some of the notable examples of countries where you can get cuffed for excessive PDA.
The public display of any kind of affection has a lot to do with confidence and how you carry yourself. To some, the smallest physical interaction with partners can be deemed as immoral enough to start making a scene and call the cops if they’re really feeling like they don’t have anything better to do. But even in that case, if you didn’t happen to cross the lines too far, some witty chat coupled with some assertiveness will probably get you out of that sticky sitch.
Make notes of buildings with no doormen
Do we need to be more explicit than that?
Get a Car
Why do you think every single boy wants a car as soon as they get their license? It surely isn’t to drive Mum to the closest shop to do her groceries. With that being said, intimate encounters in cars prove how few places there are in the Arab World to have some quality time with your other half. And we’re not only talking about hooking up. Finding a place where you can date in peace feels like you’re looking for a needle in a stack of hay: wherever you go people will want to breathe down your neck and get involved in your business.