Benin

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Flag of Benin Benin
Information
Language: French
Capital: Porto Novo
Population: 9.056.010
Currency: CFA Franc BCEAO
Hitchability: <rating country='bj' />
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<map lat="9.3796240254887" lng="2.1201915625186" zoom="5" view="0" float="right" />


Benin is a country in Western Africa and borders Togo to the west, Nigeria to the east and Burkina Faso and Niger to the north.

Hitching in Benin is very easy, just stick out your thumb or wave down a car any way you want. Many vehicles are taxis so make sure the ride is free before you get in, speaking basic French is important. White plates are private cars and orange plates are company plates. All cars with orange plates are taxis and so are pick-up trucks with a canvas frame over the back, all other trucks should be hitchable. Green, Blue, Black and Red plates are all government plates and are good for rides in the middle of nowhere but will pass you on main roads. There are very few vehicles outside of the South and the main highways. Sometimes if you get yourself really stuck in the backwoods someone will offer you a free ride on a motorcycle. Police shouldn't be a problem, if they ask for a bribe they won't insist. Getting invited to people's houses to sleep isn't very common in Benin. North Benin has spicier food and kinder and quieter people, the South has the Vodun religion and most of the little tourism the country gets. Hitching within cities is more difficult than many parts of West Africa, probably because people expect you to take motorcycle taxi within a city. The motorcycle taxis are called Zims, Zimidjans or Zeds and the drivers are really obnoxious and annoying to deal with. The highway from Cotonou to Malanville often has large convoys of cars driven by Nigerian drivers, you can spot them by lack of licence plates and insane driving, they speak broken English and might be a little rude at first finding out you want a "lift", but they usually take you any way.

Cities

Porto-Novo, Abomey, Cotonou, Grand Popo