One thing cutting down on the packed conditions of London's Underground train system is the fact you can bring almost nothing into Olympic venues. Here's the list. You should look it over before heading to that rhythmic gymnastics event.
Some of the things banned form venues make perfect sense (guns, knives, explosives). While others just make common sense (pets and drugs). Some others might come as a surprise when you get to the gate. There's no getting them back once confiscated, either, since "There are no storage facilities available and if you surrender an item, you won’t be able to get it back.
Among the prohibited items:
Anything that makes a statement. We haven't heard of anyone being denied entrance because they're wearing a shirt with a Pepsi logo, but it wouldn't be surprising. Still, the clothing the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (try fitting that on a T-shirt) is looking for includes, "Any objects or clothing bearing political statements or overt commercial
identification intended for 'ambush marketing'. We're guessing your "John 3:16" shirt and rainbow wig are fine. Along those same lines, "Tents, placards, spray paint or any other item which could be used to demonstrate within the venue or sabotage property" are also not allowed.
Certain flags. Better tone down your patriotism. Flags larger than 3-foot by 6-foot are not allowed. Neither are those from countries not participating in the Games, except for "the flags of nations under the umbrella of a participating country such as England, Scotland and Wales."
Camera lenses. If you imagine yourself as the next Walter Iooss Jr., you better be able to work your magic with lenses under a foot long. Oh, and don't bring a tripod, either.
Big umbrellas. Not all umbrellas are banned. But if you want to cover more than yourself, you probably can't. "Large, golf-style umbrellas" are not welcome. If you're craning your neck to get a look at the Dutch women's field hockey team, it's probably greatly appreciated that the fan in front of you isn't sporting a rain shield five feet wide.
Oversized hats. What's the definition of oversized? They don't say. We're guessing a sombrero is out, a 10-gallon cowboy hat is in.
Excessive amounts of food. Again, there's no specific amount listed here. Your definition of excessive amounts of food and my definition are probably completely different. Maybe not, if you consider a large Meat Lover's pizza and two dozen chicken wings a single serving. No doubt this rule is in place for one reason and one reason only: Pumping as much profit as they can from $7.50 pints of Carlsberg and $12.50 plates of fish and chips.
Walkie-talkies. Want to keep track of your family if you get lost? Leave the handheld devices at home. Sure, you can still use your phone like most people have for the past five years. But beware cell service is often spotty with so many people trying to post Facebook pictures of their Wenlock and Mandeville siting. Don't try and use your cell phone as a WiFi hotspot, either. From the rules: "Smart devices such as Android phones, iPhone and tablets are permitted inside venues, but must not be used as wireless access points to connect multiple devices."
Noisemakers. "Hunting horns, air horns, klaxons, drums, vuvuzelas and whistles" have to stay home. Good.
More than one soft bag. No hard cases are allowed since they might be hiding something. That makes sense. But if you're a mom with kids in tow you better be able to fit the day's necessities in one bag, and "You must be able to fit your bag under your seat." Ten bags of souvenirs are OK to purchase once you get inside the grounds.
Projectiles. We're not talking about surface-to-air missiles. The British military has cornered the market on those for a few weeks. But Frisbees, balls, rackets, etc. are all prohibited. Just watch sports. Don't play sports when you come to the Olympics.
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