about hitch hiking, where you should do
it and when. We welcome your contributions.
Please check the city
guides for specific information for
hitching to and from particular locations.
Please e-mail us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Hitch hiking gets a lot of bad press. This
creates paranoia both amongst travellers
who become scared of getting lifts, and
of drivers who are too frightened to pick
you up. But hitch hiking can be a great
way to get to know locals and discover places
you would not otherwise visit.
In most rural areas French people will stop
for hitch hikers. Big cities like Paris
are not good to hitch from. It is better
to buy a bus or train ticket to a nearby
small town and try hitching from there.
If you are determined to hitch then try
the entrance ramp on the motorway circling
the city, in Paris this is the Peripherique.
Other options in Paris include the portes
on the Péripherique you can try Porte
d'Orléans or Porte d'Italie for Lyon,
Porte de Bagnolet for Lilles, Brussels and
Amsterdam, Porte d'Auteuil for Le Havre
and Porte de Bercy for Reims, Metz and Nancy.
But the best way to hitch from Paris is
to contact Allostop Provoya which is a ride
sharing service located at 8, rue Rochambeau,
75009 Paris (métro: Cadet), Tel.
Other ride sharing agencies:
21, rue Patou, Lille
tel: 20 42 08 88
28, rue du Calvaire
tel: 40 89 04 85
8, rue Rochambean, Paris
tel: (1) 42 46 00 66 or (1) 53 20 42 42
6, cours des Alliés, Rennes
tel: 99 30 98 87
9, Place du Capitole
tel: 61 23 25 29
This is a cause for debate amongst hitchers. Some say drivers won't stop if
they don't know where you want to go. Others say it is safer not to use a
sign so you can ask the driver where they are going before you accept a
lift. A compromise is to use the name of the road you are travelling on. In
Italy try and use the Italian name for the place eg. Firenze (Florence),
Venezia (Venice), Milano (Milan).
Tips for getting a ride:
Most people that give you lifts will be people that have hitched themselves,
or couriers or truck drivers who want company. To improve your chances of
getting a lift:
- look neat and respectable.
- Face the oncoming traffic and smile.
- Choose a spot with plenty of room for the driver to safely stop and where
the traffic is not too fast. This way it is safer for cars to stop and the
driver has a chance to size you up.
- Stand confidently with your thumb out over the road.
- When a car stops ask where the driver is going to - you can still decline
the lift if you don't like the look of them.
- Do not smoke in someone else's car.
- Travel light.
- Take an international drivers licence as the driver may wish to share the
Note if it rains you've usually got less chance of people stopping
(visibility decreases and they might not want water in their car). It might
be better to make your way to a cafe or autostop and wait out the rain or
stick it out and try to use the sympathy factor.
Despite the bad press the most hazardous thing about hitching is the chance
of being involved in a car accident or being hit by a car if you are
standing too close to the side of the road. Here are some more tips for
- As a single female you will travel quickly but you may attract undue
attention. Travelling with a guy helps as people may perceive you as a
- Turn down the lift if you do not feel comfortable.
- Keep your luggage with you. Do not put it in the trunk.