I spend a lot of time on travel sites and travel forums and there is one thing I constantly see that boggles my mind. It's one of the stupidest things you can do when it comes to travel.
Well, it's not quite as stupid as the story I read in the paper the other day about the girl who spent a few years in jail in Peru. She tried to smuggle shit-ton of cocaine to impress her friends. That's a whole other level of stupid. Please don't do that.
What I'm talking about is when someone goes on a forum or community and asks random strangers on the internet about visa requirements.
That might not land you in a Peruvian jail but it could cost you a massive whack of money and ruin your travels. Why would you even?
Think about it, in the time it takes you to post your question on forum then go back and check a couple of times, you could've looked up the phone number for the correct person to speak to, called them and got factual information. You could check the immigration website. You could send them an email (probably the best, I love written confirmation).
Why would you not ever do that?
Can you imagine the weight your argument is going to carry when you are standing in the arrival hall, telling the authorities, "but someone on the internet said it was okay."
Here's the thing, laws very so much from country to country - both the destination country and your country of residence. Unless someone has exactly the same situation as you, they can't tell you what visa requirements are with any certainty. Even then, laws change. Sometimes officials can be lenient, other times strict. One person's experience, at one given point of time, is not an unchangeable rule.
Forums and communities can be great for travel advice about things like what to pack, what sites to see, where to hang out. All that kind of thing is subjective. When it comes to legal matters, the type of thing that has a right or wrong, always go to the source. The last thing you want to do when you travel is get sent home because you have the wrong visa.