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A '''rest area''' (or '''service area''' ('''RSA'''), '''service station''') is a public facility located next to a motorway at which drivers and passengers can rest, eat, or refuel without exiting on to secondary roads. It can be a great place for hitchhiking: you can ask for a ride when drivers re-fill or wander around the area, or you can stand by its exit (that leads to a motorway) and hitchhike there.
Facilities of the rest area may include park-like areas, fuel stations, toilets, and restaurants. Rest areas are common in the [[United States]], [[Canada]], [[Australia]] and parts of [[Europe]] ([[France]]: Aire de service, [[Germany]]: [http://www.tank.rast.de/standorte/servicenetz/index.php Raststätte] (directly on the Autobahn) and [http://www.autohof.net/ Autohof] (somewhat off the Autobahn), [[Italy]]: [http://www.automap.it/areediservizio/ Area Servizio], [[United Kingdom]]: [http://www.motorwayservices.info/ Motorway services], [[Austria]]: Autobahnstation, [[Denmark]]: Serviceanlæg, [http://www.info-teria.dk/ Info-teria], [[Hungary]]: Pihenohely, [[Netherlands]]: verzorgingsplaats, [[Slovenia]]: Počivališče) and [[Asia]].
Not all rest areas include [[Petrol station hitchhiking|petrol stations]] - this means that the traffic on such rest areas will, in general, be much lower, and one can expect more difficulties when looking for a ride there. For service areas with gas stations see information [[Where to hitchhike|here]].
== Food and Drink ==
Food on rest area's is in general highly overpriced and, in case of already prepared food, pretty abysmal. However, many German
Raststättes now prepare food (mostly pasta) on the spot and, although still overpriced, it is actually pretty good.
== Get out of a rest area ==