The idea of hitchhiking may sound absurd to some, but I believe that one should try hitchhiking while travelling as much as they can. Though of course, you must have your wits about it and should be able to sense people before trusting them and decide to go along with them, but the fact that some of the best travel experiences (at least for me) are when you trust people, hitchhiking and other such things should not be disregarded.
I have had my best share of travel memories when I hitchhiked or stayed with a local in their house. Here are my 10 reasons for…
Why everyone should try hitchhiking
Hitchhiking is a great way to travel places: I have hitchhiked pretty much everywhere in the world, even on some of the remotest parts of the Himalayas – and every time I did, I was reminded what a great form of transport hitching is.
Hitchhiking is safe: Hitching is no riskier than crossing the road, or stopping by next to someone and asking for directions. There is a chance you will meet a crazy psychopath maniac but you face this risk every time you step outside, don’t you?
Hitchhiking is free: This is one of the reasons why I recommend Hitchhiking. Hitchhiking is free and helps you travel on a budget. In some poor countries, such as Bosnia and Serbia, you are expected to make a contribution to fuel costs but in most countries, no one even thinks about it. Hitchhiking is free and fun!
Hitchhiking makes your trip memorable: I have hitched across the Himalayas when I started travelling, with one time ending up crossing the border and returning. And such memories last a lifetime. If it were not for hitchhiking, I would have never been able to cross the border, but since I was travelling with a local, and I trusted them, I ended up doing something super wicked. When you hitchhike, such memorable instances are more likely to happen.
Hitchhiking is a great way to meet people: Hitchhiking is the easiest way to meet local people in the land you are travelling through. In Cambodia, I met a coal miner, a retired air force commander who served in the war, a housewife and her two charming kids, a retired couple and the driver of an excavator. I had interesting conversations with each of them and understood the history of the country I never could had I not been hitchhiking.
Hitchhiking is a great way to learn languages: Because most of the lifts you get are given by local people, you end up learning a bit of the local language too. When you’re travelling in public buses or trains, such a thing is less likely to happen.
Hitchhiking makes you more confident: And last but not the least, hitchhiking boosts your confidence and helps you adjust in the local community well. Overcoming the taboos of ‘hitchhiking not being safe’ gives us more confidence in life. Conquer your fear of hitching and it may help you conquer fear.