User:ZacNFNP

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Usually I like to just use my thumb, but in parts of Sweden where drivers are going all over the place and heaps of people stop, a sign can help to avoid wasting drivers' time.

I'm a 21 year old guy from Sydney but living in Berlin.

I first discovered hitchhiking by word of mouth in Iran. While talking with other travelers about the locals' incredible hospitality, I was encouraged to finally hitchhike. The experience was naturally daunting, but it didnt feel foreign; I had previously backpacked around Ethiopia where public transport consists of overcrowded vans stopping to pick people up and drop people off all throughout the country side. Because of this experience I felt very comfortable 'hailing' a ride off the highway. Since getting picked up by a guy called Majit for the very first time I've never looked back, and now that I live in Europe I hitchhike every second month or so. I'm so thankful to have had the initial encouragement as now I find hitchhiking easier than any other form of transport and cannot imaging traveling by bus or train anymore, except when it's raining haha.

I prefer sticking my thumb out to holding a sign. This is because I never have solid plans and love saying "yes" when a local invites me to join them somewhere I hadn't anticipate.

I prefer being passive rather than approaching people. This is because I like being picked up by interesting people rather than relying on the charity of otherwise disinterested drivers.

I prefer walking along the highway to waiting at a petrol station. This is simply because it's more fun, more beautiful, and in my experience, more effective. In countries where this is illegal I try to sneak onto the highway anyway but sometimes I give in and wait at a petrol station.

For those interested I keep a blog which desperately needs updating.

Where I've been

Here's a map of everywhere (outside of Australia) I've slept! However, the only countries that I've hitchhiked in are Iran, Germany, Poland, Portugal, Spain, the Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Norway, Mauritania, Andorra, France, Slovenia, Austria and the Czech Republic, in chronological order.

Useful resources

These resources can be really useful for hitchhikers, but by using them we also have the opportunity to contribute to them for both locals and future travelers.

  • Open Street Map An invaluable project with great coverage of places Google maps misses. Try to write your edits in the local language and script too! OSM powers many third party apps such as Maps.me and Leaflet.
  • Falling Fruit A free meal or just a healthy snack. Also a great way to explore the city you're in!

Car stats

This list is tentative and chronological... I hope that it reflects the diverse members of society who were kind enough to give me a ride.

  • Paykan
  • Saipa Tiba
  • Toyota Hilux
  • Iran Khodro Samand
  • Peugeot Pars
  • Mercedes-Benz M-Class
  • Peugeot Partner
  • Peugeot 4008
  • Volkswagen Transporter
  • Volkswagen Polo
  • Mercedes-Benz E-Class
  • Kia c'eed
  • Peugeot Partner
  • Opel Antara
  • Toyota Prius
  • Volvo 850
  • Ford Fiesta
  • Audi A2
  • Citroën C4 Cactus
  • Marcedes-Benz Sprinter
  • Volkswagen Lupo
  • Audi RS6
  • Ford Transit
  • Citroën Berlingo
  • Volkswagen Passat
  • Volvo XC90
  • Volkswagen Caravelle
  • Toyota Yaris
  • Land Rover Discovery
  • Volkswagen Passat
  • Ford Focus
  • Renault Scenic
  • Volvo V90
  • Opel Corsa
  • Peugeot 5008
  • Volkswagen Jetta
  • Volkswagen Passat
  • Volkswagen Tiguan
  • Mazda 6
  • Audi A4
  • Citroen C5
  • Volkswagen Caravelle
  • Mercedes-Benz C-Class
  • Volkswagen Touran
  • Citroën Berlingo
  • Scania bus
  • Renault Megane
  • Mercedes-Benz E-Class
  • Toyota Avensis
  • Hyundai truck
  • Mitsubishi L200
  • Mercedes-Benz 190E
  • Toyota Hilux
  • Toyota Hilux
  • Toyota Avensis
  • Mitsubishi Montero
  • Renault 4
  • Volkswagen Polo
  • Renault Clio
  • Volkswagen Golf
  • Volkswagen Polo
  • Renault Traffic
  • Ford Focus
  • Honda Jazz
  • Škoda Fabia
  • BMW 1 Series
  • Ford S-Max
  • Range Rover Evoque
  • Renault Megane
  • Volkswagen Passat

Most interesting rides

  • S, the head of a gang of gay heroin dealers in a large Iranian city. He invited me to a bunch of underground parties and we ended up having a wild few days...
  • A, a Russian from Kazakhstan who lives in Germany and works in Switzerland. He said his construction company build some of the hotels for the Winter Olympics in Sochi and claimed to be a personal friend of Putin...
  • J, the Portuguese swingers party coordinator whose holiday house in a secluded cork forest near the beach felt more like a six star resort. Although he didn't really say what his job was, his friend secretly told me that he was from old money...
  • L, and the rest of the drunk Finnish soccer team who picked me up and partied with me all night long...