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Proper Haunt Jaunting Etiquette: Lesson 1

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We’re fast approaching the Haunt Jaunting high season. Yes, I’m talking about that month of October when ghost tours, ghost hunting tours/classes, and haunted houses (of the variety that crop up around this time of year) move to the top of everyone’s To Do list.

But something you don’t see too often is reminders about proper haunt jaunting etiquette.

“Ghosts care about manners?” you may be wondering.

Hmmm…that I don’t know. I’m sure some would appreciate you using good manners when you meet or encounter them, but as far as I know they don’t subscribe to the Emily Post school of thought.

Rather, what I’m talking about is how to properly behave amongst your living brethren. Not that many of them care much about the Emily Post rules of etiquette either, but there are certain basics they’ll appreciate you demonstrating. Namely:

  • DO NOT TRESPASS – This one can’t be emphasized enough. It’s the one most often ignored but is crucial to keep in mind. If there’s a sign posted saying, “No Trespassing!” “Trespassers Not Allowed” or even simply, “Private Property – Keep Out!” please, do yourself, the property owners, and the cops a favor and DO NOT TRESPASS!

“What’s the big deal? Who’ll care if I’m there or not if they don’t know?”

That’s the kind of thinking that gets a lot of people in trouble. Do you recall a story I wrote not too long ago about ghost hunting trespassers in the news? One lady wound up dead, some boys ended up being arrested. I’m sure they figured their excursions on to private property were no big deal, too. After all, who would find out? They never expected to make a wrong step and need to call for emergency services or that a wary passerby would contact authorities about suspicious behavior.

Yet, it happens. (Not so much 911 being called for an accident as because someone notices people wandering at all hours where they know people shouldn’t be wandering.)

Listen, you can go ghost hunting, exploring for ghosts, and in general show yourself a spooky time but you can do it safely and courteously. Therefore:

  • ALWAYS GET PERMISSION FIRST – Just plead your case to the property owners. “I heard rumors you have ghosts on your property and I’d like your permission to check it out.” If you’re with a ghost hunting group, even better. People will usually give you access, but they like to know you’re there. Also, they may like to alert you to any dangers (unsafe floors, hidden wells, etc) and perhaps get you to sign a waiver releasing them from liability in case you do get hurt.
  • DON’T GIVE FELLOW GHOST ENTHUSIASTS A BAD RAP – Please keep in mind the rest of us ghost enthusiasts. The majority of us practice good etiquette and respect private property. When others don’t, it gives us all a bad rap. Not cool.
Courtney Mroch
Courtney Mroch, otherwise known as HJ's Ambassador of Dark and Paranormal Tourism, is an author, traveler, and ghost enthusiast. When she's not writing, jaunting, or planning her next trip, it's a safe bet you'll find her in one of three places: on a tennis court somewhere, on a yoga mat somewhere, or watching a horror movie somewhere. She currently resides in Nashville, Tennessee.

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3 thoughts on “Proper Haunt Jaunting Etiquette: Lesson 1

  1. Great and important post! I can’t tell you how many times stupid ghost hunters have ruined it for the rest of us. They rent a room in a haunted B&B and get drunk and act up or rush up and down the halls with equipment scaring guests or they wander into places they’re not allowed in the building and then the building won’t allow hunters ever again. We have a hotel in downtown Phoenix that had that happen and they freak out if they even think you might be renting a haunted room because you’re into ghosts. They’re that paranoid. I did go to a famous haunted abandoned site one time, in broad daylight. There was a for sale sign, so I figured I could tell the realtors I’m looking at the property to buy it. The buildings, however, were filled with squatters who screamed and chased us. It’s a scary thing to do and cops are very anxious to arrest folks who ghost hunt, they’ve had enough! People who own famous haunted old jails and hospitals have guards all over the property and cameras. You can’t get away with it anymore. It’s not like the old days when you could go anywhere you want and no one bugged you. Even cemeteries after hours…nope. I personally would love to buy an old historic building and just let ghost hunters enjoy it. What a fun thing that would be…like an ongoing study and a place for them to go. I heard the Vulture Mines in AZ are for sale, but it’s a cool 3 million. Comes with its own mines and ghost town where most ghost hunters go to train. That would be my lottery purchase, no doubt.

  2. Great post and perfect timing. I agree October seems to be a time when everyone is into ghost hunting. Unfortunatly a lot of them are thinking Hollywood and as Autumnforest pointed out run around acting crazy. Oh and if she wins that 3 million, count me in I want a chance at those mines ha ha

  3. Hey, thanks for the great comments, Autumnforest and Patty! Coming from you two, this means a lot!

    I’ve heard you refer to hotels that are paranoid to allow ghost hunters before, Autumnforest. It really stinks a few had to wreck it for the whole with that hotel. And being chased by sqautters…um, that would freak me out way more than encountering a ghost!

    And I’m with you Patty. I LOVED Autumnforest’s idea about winning the lottery and buying a mine. Or some other haunted site and making it available to ghost hunters. What a cool idea!

    And, hmm…I’m thinking you just may have inspired a blog idea…again. What else is new?

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