Survivalist Forum banner

A question of knife legality in Europe

7256 Views 11 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  arrexian
Me and my brother will be backpacking in Europe for a month and well be in the following countries: Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Belgium, France, and Switzerland. My question is, does anyone know the legality of carrying a folding knife for purposes of self defense? Is there a size limit? Do any of these countries ban it outright?

I ask because we will be staying in the cheapest hostels we can find the whole time and as a result may be in some rougher neighborhoods.

Thank you for your input!

I tried a google search but came up with little :(
1 - 1 of 12 Posts
I live in the Netherlands so I can tell you about the law there. It's pretty strict. :(

In the Netherlands you are not allowed to defend yourself with a knife unless you are threated with a knife or a gun (something just as dangerous). If somebody attacks you with bare fists, and you defend yourself with a knife it's considered as defense out of proportions, which is a felony offence. Also just drawing a knife when you're not attacked, just threatened or not threatend at all is illegal.

You are not allowed to carry a knife for self defence. It is allowed to carry it as a tool and not as a weapon. It's considered a weapon if you carry it in a situation where it can be used for nothing but as a weapon. (So if you carry a knife at work, its allowed because it can be used as a tool. But you can't carry it in a pub, because there it can be used as a weapon only.)

Now there is a diffirence between carrying and possession. Above I used the word carry all the time. You carry a knife when you have it on your body ready to be used. If you have it in your rucksack or backpack, not ready to draw and use it's not considered 'carry' but 'possession'. So if you have a knife in your backpack and not ready for use immediately, it's legal. So when you go to a pub it's better to put in away in your rucksack, instead of having it on your body.

There are many laws about what is illegal. I think it's the best if I say what you can have (instead of what you can't have, that's a lot more :( ) You are allowed to have a folding knife that has only one sharp side and when folded, doesn't exceed a length of 28cm (that's when folded, not extended). For fixed blades there is no size limit. For folding knifes that have a spring in it, or something that opens automatically, there are other stricter laws.

This is basicly the law about knifes in the Netherlands. In the other countries you mentioned it might be diffirent. If you have any more questions, just ask.
See less See more
1 - 1 of 12 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.