How Bachelor & Bachelorette Contestants Get Around The Strict Rules

Photo: Courtesy of ABC.
Being a contestant on The Bachelor or The Bachelorette sounds like a special mix of heaven and hell. The positives are that you may or may not meet your soulmate, travel the world, and get once-in-a-lifetime opportunities like experiencing zero gravity. (Hey, it worked on Nick and Vanessa.) You also have to give up a lot of your freedom to enjoy these perks (As well as subject yourself to various forms of emotional torture and in all likelihood embarrass yourself on national TV, but that is neither here nor there.)
Contestants are subject to a number of rules laid out by the show and enforced by producers: no phones, no TVs, no outside interactions, no funny business off-camera, etc. But, of course, the men and women on the series have figured out ways to skirt those pesky guidelines, from the "no sex before the Fantasy Suite" edict to the fact that you're not supposed to chew food on camera. Here is how the contestants get around the rules — something to keep an eye out for when Rachel Lindsay's season kicks off Monday night.
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Photo: Courtesy of ABC.
The Rule: No unsanctioned one-on-one time.

How To Get Around It: Fake your identity.

During Andi Dorfman’s final four in Brussels, Nick Viall told the hotel concierge that he was locked out of his wife Andi’s room and snagged a key to sneak in a visit with her on the DL. He then snagged a rose during the group date.
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The Rule: No unsanctioned one-on-one time.

How To Get Around It: Write her a cute note.

Catherine said her future hubby Sean Lowe orchestrated secret interactions by using an old high school trick. “There are a lot of special moments that the camera doesn’t capture. My favorite was when Sean slipped me a note during our flight to St. Croix,” Lowe said. “He did it secretively so no one else could see. He had crossed out the destination on his airline ticket and written ‘Snugglesville’ instead...letting me know he wanted to cuddle with me and no one else.”
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Photo: Courtesy of ABC.
The Rule: No eating the delicious food on dates.

How To Get Around It: Shovel it in off-camera.

“The food on dates is usually good, but the catch is that you aren't supposed to eat it! No one wants to watch people stuffing their face on a date. If you're eating, you aren’t talking,” explained Jaclyn Swartz from Ben Flajnik’s season. "Instead, we eat before the dates, as we are getting ready.”

Ashley Spivey from Brad Womack's season shared her technique: “You usually talk and start eating. Then, a producer will pull you aside to do a one-on-one interview. Then, you go back to eat while the other person is doing their one-on-one interview. This is when you stuff your face and hurry and eat before the other person gets back.”
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The Rule: No getting intimate before the Fantasy Suite.

How To Get Around It: Do it in the ocean.

Contestant Courtney Robertson wrote in her tell-all I Didn’t Come Here to Make Friends, that she had sex with Ben Flajnik during their skinny dip in Puerto Rico. “Ben and I did have sex in the ocean,” she revealed. “On-camera. It was immediate but it was only for about twenty seconds and, um, it was just the tip.”

Sharleeyn Joynt, a contestant on Juan Pablo’s season corroborated this. “Water time is generally one of the VERY few times the lead and contestant ever get together, able to talk, without mics attached to them and without a producer chaperoning,” she wrote on her blog.
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Photo: Courtesy of ABC.
The Rule: No getting intimate before the Fantasy Suite

How To Get Around It: Just… do it anyway

On a 20/20 special in 2010, Inside The Bachelor: The Secrets Behind the Rose, longtime producer Mike Fleiss acknowledged that “there is sex” on the series. "There's not a ton of it, I think the average is that the guy will end up having sex with about three women during the course of the show.” He added that Bob Guiney had the "highest batting average” saying the season 4 star slept with 5 ½ contestants, whatever the fuck that means.
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Photo: Courtesy of ABC.
The Rule: No media or entertainment — movies, TV, or books.

How To Get Around It: Be religious.

Bibles, apparently, are allowed. According to The Daily Beast, quite a few women on Sean Lowe’s season brought one. “Every morning, there were six or seven of us that had Bible study and did our daily devotion,” contestant Leslie Hughes explained.
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Photo: Courtesy of ABC.
The Rule: Only two suitcases allowed.

How To Get Around It: Completely ignore the rule (or borrow other girls' clothes).

Season 16's Jaclyn Swartz brought six suitcases. "I think that's something girls made a mistake of [when] they follow the rules of packing, but they're going to pay for your bag fees," she said. "Then once if you make it to a certain point, you store one of your suitcases. Once you start traveling internationally, that's when things get complicated. They make you go down to one suitcase."

Chris Harrison wrote on his blog, "If you really pay attention, and it appears many of you do, the girls often wear the same dress twice or borrow each other’s [dresses] for dates and ceremonies."

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