Going south? Take the A1 towards Paris, or directly to south of France join the A26 towards Reims, Dijon, Lyon (so also direction Spain & Italy)
Heading south? Going to Paris? Have a "PARIS"-sign. The "autoroute" A1 leads to Paris.
You go rather directly to the south of France (and Italy, Spain)? Then avoid Paris. As it takes quite some time to cross Paris. And even more time to leave Paris. Better choose a "LYON"-sign. In this case try to get on the "autoroute" A26. Try someone take you to the "Peage" (= toll) right before the junction between A1/A26. Stand at this "Peage"-square with a "A26/LYON"-sign).
From Lille you can choose to go the first petrol station on the A1, direction Paris. Leaving Lille with a "AIRE PHALEMPIN"-sign. If you can reach this petrol station "Aire de Phalempin" it is a good way to go south. (On Google Maps it seems you could walk to this petrol station, from the village of Seclin, south of Lille. Seclin has a train station. In french is described how you can get their by feet on: ))
From Lille there are several options to hitch hike direction A1.
- Option 1
Go to metrostation « Porte d'Arras ». From there walk in the direction of the motorway, cross the bridge. On the left you will see an accelerating lane going onto the ring (it is the A25, which joins the A1 to Paris after about 1 km). You can stand next to the traffic lights just before the ramp with a sign. Or stand on the ramp itself, people have time to stop on the ramp.
Garthelgard has hitchhiked from this spot more than twenty times and has never waited more than 30 minutes.
- In August 2012 to this wiki somebody added : "The best place to go anywhere is the hard shoulder near metrostation « Porte d'Arras » - just follow the signs to Highway. Within 20 minutes many cars heading towards every directions stopped. To Brussels use sign B and you get there very easy."
- Option 2
Go to metro station « Valenciennes ». Walking to the north, after about 100 meters you can go eastwards and follow the "Avenue Denis Cordonnier". The A1 crosses this "Avenue Denis Cordonnier". And there is an entrance to the A1. (The Hostel/Auberge de jeunesse "Stephane Hessel" is on crossing of "Avenue Denis Cordonnier" and "Boulevard Paul Painlevé". Address: 235, Boulevard Paul Painlevé)
- Option 3
At the end of Boulevard des Cités Unies (at the side of the railways). 300 meters eastwards from "metro station « Lille Grand Palais »", you find an entrance to the A1 direction Paris.
- Option 4
Go to metro station « Porte de Postes ». Here is a big roundabout. It's possible to get a ride in several directions. Westwards : direction Calais/Dunkerque (via A25). Eastwards : directions like Paris/Gand/Anvers/Amsterdam/Brussels. It's safe for cars to pull over and one can ask also at the traffic lights.
- Option 5
Go to metro station « Porte de Douai ». Walk or hitch 4 km south (direction Ronchin). Or take the bus "Liane 1". After 4 km you will see a Novotel on your lefthand. There is a roundabout where there is a sign direction A1 Paris. However there is no direct access to the A1, the traffic direction Paris soon joins the A1 (after several hundreds meter).
Going north? Take the A22/E17 towards Antwerp, Gent, Netherlands
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You can avoid getting stuck in Lille by getting out at the last petrol station on the A1 on "Aire de Phalempin" is quite a big station, good for hitching, and it's 15 km due south from the centre. However, in direction of Brussels it might be a bit difficult there. Most people go towards Ghent and Antwerp there.
Otherwise, take the tram-line T to Chateau Rouge. As you get out, you can see the motorway. The spot is the motorway slip road. There's not a lot of traffic, but there is space for drivers to safely pull over and pick you up.
Or else, get to the petrol station on the N356 about 800m north of metro station Monts Sarts. (Need to jump a small fence and a 2 meter drop! There is a place for your foot so you can slide and jump, but it is still quite a wall). From here you can find lifts going into Belgium and have the chance to talk to drivers.
The French/Belgium border is not a good spot anymore. It is now just a big parking lot where trucks stop, all sign of the previous building there have vanished, it is not possible to hitch on the highway anymore and hardly any car stop there. To get there you'll have to take the Line 2 of the metro until "C. H. Dron" (last stop, and actually already in Tourcoing, not in Lille). And walk 30 to 45 Min to it there is an access road with to fence or barrier stopping people on foot. You might be able to get a ride to the petrol station 5 km into Belgium at Kortrijk where loads of Netherland folk stop for a refill but it will be hard.
Getting on the A27 by feet from the centre of Lille is several kilometers. A good option is go to "metro station « 4 Cantons »". From there it is about 500 meters to a roundabout which is situated west of the N227, where the D146 (a part of this D146 is called "Rue Nicolas Appert") is crossing the this N227 (which carries the name "Boulevard du Breucq", and is part of the E17). (September 2017 Roel dropped Nati, she is from Argentina, at this roundabout 11h00 in the morning. She claimed to found a hitch in 5 minutes.)
See above, going north: Go to metro station « Porte de Postes ». Here is a big roundabout. It's possible to get a ride in several directions. Westwards : direction Calais/Dunkerque (via A25).
--Roelguldemond (talk) 12:19, 11 December 2013 (CET) Comment by Roel september 2017 : I edited this page intensively. I have been deleting quite some information which seemed to be outdated or redundant. I described several options. Sure there are more options! But I have tried most of these possibilities myself.
About the subway
There are check-tickets, often. And that's not so easy to know where they are and when... If you are french, they are not nice = if you don't pay the bill, they will take money on your bank account directly (for me, it was one year after but VERY expensive... so even if you don't live in Lille but in France, an advice: pay sooner as possible...) I don't know what happened for strangers... Maybe, they won't worry you too much. you can buy an 3 inter-stations ticket. It's for 0.70€, three stops (without the departure station) but they can't really check where did you start your trip :) and it's half less expensive.
Lille is expensive and is not very comfortable for the outdoor person. You probably won't have much of a problem with the police, but the drunks take being lunatics very seriously and they don't ever seem to pass out and leave you alone. As a result, you'll be met with all sorts of unwanted babbling conversation and one even tried to strangle Zactalk with a belt. Gare Lille Flandres is especially inhospitable.