Brussels

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Brussels (French: Bruxelles, Dutch: Brussel) is the capital of Belgium and the european capital.

Brussels is a very international city. While still walking around in the center you might be able to spot some cars from other countries. For instance, when heading to Paris, check the French numberplates with 75 or 90-something (Paris and its suburbs).

Hitching Out

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South-West towards Charleroi, Mons, Lille, Paris (E19)

On the Internationalelaan (Boulevard International) close to the motorway entrance, there is a lot of traffic and much space for cars to stop, even a gas station where you could ask people directly. To get there, take Bus #78 from the South Station in direction of Humanite and get out at the stop Bollinckx. Keep in mind that you are now in the middle of an industrial zone!

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Another spot would possibly be along the N261 (Brugmannlaan) in Ukkel.

Alternative destinations along the E19:

South towards Louvain-la-Neuve, Charleroi, Namur, Luxembourg (E411)

Reach the Station "Delta" in Ixelles, Metro 1A direction Herrmann-Debroux or bus 71 to Delta. The street surrounding the University Campus is called Triomflaan (Boulevard du Triomphe) and Pleinlaan (Boulevard de la Plaine). There is also a large Texaco gas station nearby, Delta is a spot where a lot of people hitchhike, especially to Louvain-la-Neuve.

At the station 'Delta', you will notice a sign marked 'Taxistop' on the Jules Cockxstraat which is used as a carsharing kiss'n ride spot. Just hitch from there.

Note that the E411 starting from there head direction South to Namur, Luxembourg, Lorraine in France and Rheinland-Pfalz in Germany. Many junctions, such as the southern ring near Jezus-Eik, gives the chance to reach the E19 (towards Charleroi, Mons and Paris) or the E42 just north of Namur. Using a sign would ease the journey but remember that none of these junctions are hitchhiking friendly.

South towards Waterloo (local hitching)

Public transport to the site of Waterloo battlefield are deficient, so hitch-hiking could be a solution for those who wish to do a day excursion to that historic site. The best is to reach 'Ter Cameren Bos' (Bois de la Cambre) at the border between Ixelles and Ukkel (Tram 94 - 23 - 24) and find a spot along the Chaussee de Waterloo.

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Find the spot!

North or East, towards Leuven, Antwerp, Liege, Germany, Netherlands (E40 - E314)

You can easily hitch out of Brussels in direction East from the European / Business Quarter.

The following option is unavailable due to road works (21/08/2008)

- The first option is to hitch at the entrance of the Tunnel located at the gate of the Jubelpark (Parc du Cinquentenaire) on the Blijde-Inkomst laan (Avenue de la Joyeuse-Entree) on the side of the 'Rond-Point Schuman' (metro access 1A/1B direction Herrmann-Debroux/Stokkel). There is a street light and a side parking just at the entrance of the tunnel, you may simply stand by the light with a sign and the cars can immediately pull to pick you. This hitching point is an easy start to go to Leuven or Liege or possibly reach the services in Leuven on the E40 or on the E314.

(Note: this spot works perfectly during business hours, but the traffic is low on Sundays or during holidays; note that it is also possible to catch a ride in direction North Antwerp from there too but a sign is required)


- Another , second , good option is to hitch at the red lights on the Rue du Belliard. Its a one way street with 4 lanes and most cars enter the Tunnel at the end of the street , that goes onto the motorway towards Leuven , Liege , Aachen. Make sure to ask your driver they go onto the motorway , and go towards Leuven. The first petrol station on the motorway is right after the exit to Leuven. If your driver goes to Leuven he can miss hes turn and still go to the town through the petrol station.

Nearby public transportation to this second hitch spot are Metro station "Trone/Troon" , and also several bus lines.

North towards Antwerp

There is no direct easy way to hitch from Brussels to Antwerp, although there is some alternative meant to reach the ring in the hope to catch a ride along the E19 or the A12. Sadly those are always in periphery of the city.

(A12)

Take the tram #4, #19 or #23 to the stop De Wand or Esplanade (#4) and walk along the Avenue de Meysse up to the Antwerpselaan, crossing the Romeinsesteenweg you can hitch along the Antwerpselaan to catch a car that would get onto the highway at the Exit #2 of the A12. It is still possible that the car join the ring and the E19 towards Antwerp as Exit #3 is the Ring of Brussels junction.

Note: hitching further south on the Vuurkruisenlaan is a bit jeopardised as there is no places for a car to pull aside before it reaches the A12. The only possibility, as there is side parking along the road, is if there is sufficient space due to the fact that no cars are parked. Which makes it definitely a bad spot.

(E19)
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Find a good spot at the E19

North-West towards Gent

Let people take you to the BASILIEK OF KOEKELBERG. Then ask them the direction for the highway. They'll indicate you to the back of the Basiliek of Koekelberg = Keizer Karel laan. Hike till for 1,4 km till on your right the Baselix Shopping Center, where you'll find 2 gas/fuel stations. Stay there as people fill up with gaz for going to e.g. Ghent. Just ask people.. won't take you more than 10' to get a hike.

Take Tram 82 from the South Station in direction of 'Berchem' until the stop 'Berchem Shopping'. From there walk up the Av. Charles Quint, reach the train bridge and you are at the beginning of the E40 in direction of Gent. Just hitch at the light and you have then got a vast area for a car to pull aside behind you. The circulation is dense but a car can easily pull aside and get back on the road quite safely.

There is two Services along the E40 between Brussels and Gent that you can always manage to reach, 'Groot Bijgaarden' is about 5km from the spot you are standing and 'Wetteren' is about 10km before Gent.

Hitching in

If you do not encounter a driver that goes inside the city but on the contrary takes the Northern Ring around the city, you can ask that he pulls aside on the highway-ring (E40) just beneath the viaduc of the Exit #7a/7b (Chaussee Romaine/Parc des Expositions/Tentoonstellingspark) (basically, the Atomium and Heysel Stadium area) or at Exit #8 (Wemmel). On both exit the highway shoulder is quite large and you can immediately climb the green median towards the viaduc, also at both exit, a driver has the possibility to immediately regain the highway easily from the shoulder or if he decides to get out and get back on the ring.

From there, you simply have to walk towards the Expo park to join the Tram (23 - 81 - 94) or Metro (1A) stations at Koning Boudewijn or Heysel.

East

If you arrive from the East, you might also ask to be left at the Services along the E40 in Leuven, before arriving in Brussels, with the mean of catching a local ride that would get into town. This might be necessery if your driver goes up along the E19 to Antwerp, as there won't be any places for him to drop you off.

West - South

If you arrive from the North-West, (Gent), you can ask to be dropped at the Services in Groot-Bijgaarden which is 5km before the ring of Brussels along the E40.

If your ride only takes the Western Ring anyhow (from Gent or the south), you can ask to be left at the Exit 16 and gain the Metro 1b, stations 'Eddy Merckx' or 'Ceria' which are at footsteps.