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361 bytes added, 10 October
Issues with Law Enforcement: corrected misleading statements (see talk page)
|country = France
|map = <map lat='47' lng='1.5' zoom='5' view='0' height='320' country='France'/>
|language = French(regional languages: Alsatian, Occitan, Breton, Corsican, Basque, Catalan, ...)
|capital = [[Paris]]
|pop = 6465,102,1408 million
|currency = Euro (€)
|hitch = <rating country='fr' />
|BW = FR
'''France''' is a member state of the [[European Union]] as well as the [[Schengen Agreement]]. It is usually a great country for hitchhiking. There are many friendly car and truck drivers. Drivers have to pay toll on motorways (except in [[Bretagne|Brittany]]), and you can get a ride quite easily at some ''[[Péage|barrières de péage]]'' (toll stations). When hitchhiking on local roads, you might face some difficulties sometimes, though. One of the commonly known barriers for traveling in France (as in any many foreign countrycountries) is a the language - you might wanna learn some basic phrases before you off on the road in France.
Like everywhere in Europe, walking on the motorways is illegal and thus it's also illegal to hitchhike there. If you are picked up the police you may be fined, however the Gendarmerie are likely to simply give you a lift to the next toll stop. Use service areas, peages and on-ramps. Moreover some experience shows that French people will more often stop in a place where it is not normally allowed than in other countries.
It may also be helpful to write '''S.V.P.''' on your sign with a destination name - it is short for ''s'il vous plaît'' (sih-voo-play) which means ''please'' in French.
On Sundays, only trucks with frozen goods are allowed to drive. Keep in mind though that trucks are not allowed to go more than 90 km/h and the driver must stop for a 45 min break every 4 1/2 hours, which can make the trip much longer.
The ''"Michelin 726 National"'' map of France is a good choice for a hitchhiker in this country. It shows all the major ''barrières de péage'' and [[rest area|service stations]]. You can get a free map in péage offices.
== ''Autoroutes'', ''péages'' and ''barrières de péage'' ==
__TOC__'''Péage''' ([http://frenchcs1.aboutimtranslator.comnet/librarySL/mediaFree_Projects/wavs169679760/peagecs_10132017_15_58_47_1.wav?param1=001024 audio]) is a French word for ''toll''. It is also commonly used as referring to [[toll station]]s.
In France, most of the motorways are toll roads which are the fastest way to hitch across the country. There are two types of toll stations on péages. First, there are big ones where all traffic has to stop to pay a fee (or to get a ticket) - these are ''barrières de péage'' and usually they are excellent spots to get a long-distance ride and make it really easy to hitchhike during the night. They are often located near big cities on the autoroute. Another type is a side barrier situated on all exits in the toll part of the motorway. On latter ones traffic is much smaller, therefore one can expect a longer waiting time, although sometimes congested toll stations (the first type) can be a difficult place to hitch from, too.
[ French vehicle registration plates] and [ Arrondissements of France]. New number plates are in use since mid-2009. They have an optional reference to the department on the blue stripe at the right side, but they technically are not part of the plate, and do not necessarily refer to the owner's address - one may for example choose to put the number of the department where he/she was born. Cars that belong to companies, including rental ones usually bear "60" or "76" since tax on corporate vehicles is the lowest there. The existing old plates will be still in use for a while.
==Issues with Law Enforcement==There are three law enforcement agencies to contend with <gallery style="float:right; width:200px; margin-left:25px;>Image:Mrtweek mzenzes hitching in france.png|[[User:Mzenzes|Martin]] and [[User:MrTweek|Philipp]] hitching in France. The Police Nationale, the Gendarmerie and the DouaneImage:Derek_hitching_at_péage.jpg|Derek hitching at a péage near [[Valence]].Image:Cynthia_hitching.jpg|Cynthia hitchhiking out of [[Paris]].The '''Police Nationale''' are tasked with policing urban areas with a more than 20,000 inhabitantsImage:Tokyohitch.jpg|[[Lille]]-[[Tokyo]] direct ride, and the surrounding highway infrastructure5-min deal. They will rarely stop you, but they are well known for their less than sympathetic nature and occasionally affiliation with fascist organisationsImage:Perpignan bridgeoveronramp. They are a government agency bound by official targets, which means that if you are stopped, they will be looking for reasons to impose finesjpg|On ramp bridge near [[Perpignan]]. Even so, they have no legal right to stop you engaging in lawful activities as long as you are not creating a hazard or committing some other offenceImage:Spot-sharing. Remain calm and use your right jpg|Sharing knowledge on spots to silence, only asking '''"am I free to go"''' repeatedly, and you should be okhitch out of Paris during the [[project 888|888]] eventThe Image:peage.jpg|A typical '''Gendarmerie'barrière de péage'' is a military agency tasked with policing all of the French Republic where the population is lower than 20,000. If you treat them with courtesy, they will most likely be professional and courteous in returnFrance. Sometimes they will offer to take you to a safer or easier location to hitchhike fromImage:Pat_e_Suh. Only if you are creating jpg|Pat & Suh hitchhiking after a hazard will they issue finesbarrière de péage in France :).</gallery>The '''Douanes''' There are the customs agency for the French Republic. They patrol close three law National enforcement agencies to borders, looking for suspicious activitycontend with in France. '''They have a right to check your Identification if you are within 20km of the border'''The Police Nationale, but they require a reasonable suspicion ''(article 78 of the Code de Procédure Pénale)'' at all other times. They are often active on highways and péages going south from [[Belgium]] Gendarmerie and [[Luxembourg]], looking for hitchhikers from the [[Netherlands]] who may be carrying cannabis or large quantities of tobacco. They are however quite professional, and after a few questions about your direction of travel, will let you go on your wayDouane.
== * The '''Police Nationale''' are tasked with policing urban areas with more than 20,000 inhabitants, and the surrounding highway infrastructure. As such, you will rarely encounter them while thumbing.* The '''Douanes''' are the customs agency for the French Republic. They patrol close to borders, looking for suspicious activity. They are often active on highways and péages going south from [[FoodBelgium]]/and [[MoneyLuxembourg]] ==, looking for people transporting large amounts of tobacco or looking for hitchhikers from the [[Netherlands]] who may be carrying cannabis. * The '''Gendarmerie''' is a military agency tasked with policing all of the French Republic where the population is lower than 20,000. They are the enforcement agency you will have the most chance to encounter while on the road.
French bakeries are To make a long story short, in France, it is expected that any person can prove its identity when requested by an agent of these agencies. The easiest and most common way to do it is to show them an official ID ; however it cans also be done by law prohibited from selling bread having someone testify that is older than you are indeed the person you say you are. Agents on patrol, especially Gendrames, can stop to ask you questions. Most of the time, they will ask you where are you headed, maybe a dayfew other vague questions, so it pays to go around bakeries remind you that hitchhiking is illegal on the highways (''boulangerie''even if you are not on a highway at the moment) , wish you a nice day and asking drive away. If they ask you for old breada proof of identity, or simply checking bakeriesthe best thing would be to thow them an official ID ; however if you cooperate somewhat they probably won' doors/backyards after they closet go even that far.
EUFurthermore, EEAmany cities have local police deparments called '''Police Municipale'''. They have less authority than national agencies, Swiss, Andorran and Monégasque citizens but can live and work in France without restrictions. Non-EU citizens who are from Albania, Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Barbados, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Holy See, Honduras, Israel, Macedonia, Malaysia, Mauritius, Monaco, Montenegro, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, San Marino, Serbia, Seychelles, Taiwan and Uruguay are permitted call other agencies to do the work in France during their 3 month visa exemption period. For more information, visit the [ French Ministry of Foreign Affairs] websitethey legally can't.
== Personal Experiences ==
"My Hitch in France went marvellously! Check this, I was walking along the street in Nimes, minding my own business, and a woman pulled up in a car and asked me if I wanted to hitch to Marseille! She asked me!! When we got there, she showed me around and I slept on her sofa (whenever I tell French men about this they invariably respond 'Did you ''fork'' her?'). The next day, I got 5 hitches from Marseille to Limans, and for 3 of them all I had to do was hold up a cardboard sign and the first car that came picked me up. I was going to write that it's like taking the bus, ''but you have to wait for busses!'' As a bonus, the people who I hitched with were really nice, so much so that one of them lied and said that my French wasn't so bad! Oh yeah, and the bit about French bakeries is incomplete. They have pastries round the back too!!"
== Gallery ==I can also said France is very good country for hitchhiking, people are very friendly. Even that they do not speak a lot of English, they will try to help you. One driver also take me in one restaurant near high way even that I did not want that he spend money to by me something to eat. It was nice to cross from Spain to Germany in two days with hitchhiking.
<gallery>Image:Mrtweek mzenzes hitching I started my first hitchhike tour in france.png|[[User:Mzenzes|Martin]] France and found out that most French people are very kind and [[User:MrTweek|Philipp]] hitching in Francemost cases they are happy to take you with them.Image:Derek_hitching_at_péage.jpg|Derek hitching at But I think it's really helpful to speak even a péage near [[Valence]]little bit French so you can say want you want and where you want to go because most of French people don't like to speak english or maybee they are not able to.Image:Cynthia_hitching.jpg|Cynthia hitchhiking out Espacally in the south of [[Paris]].Image:Tokyohitch.jpg|[[Lille]]-[[Tokyo]] direct ridefrance it's also possible to travel short distances by train for free, 5-min dealbecause most of them are not controlled.Image:Perpignan bridgeoveronramp.jpg|On ramp bridge near [[Perpignan]].Image:Spot-sharing.jpg|Sharing knowledge on spots to hitch In case of controlling you can say that you're out of Paris during the [[project 888|888]] event.Image:peagemoney and in most cases they will not send you a bill because it is to complicated for them to find you in your home country.jpg|A typical ''barrière de péage'' And even if you are in France.Image:larochellehitchbad luck and they will find you the price is not even higher than the ticket for the train.jpg|[[User:Chael777|Chael]] on his ''first'' hitch!</gallery>
== External links Resources =={{nomadwiki}}
* [ Mappy] is a good online map service for France in case you want to know where certain public transport goes to.
* [ Le Réseau ASF], a PDF file that shows all ''barrières de péage'' on major routes in Southern France.
* [ Service Stations Network], a pdf file that shows all service station on major routes in southern France.
{{Cities France}}
{{Regions France}}
{{IsIn|Western Europe}}

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