Hitchhiking: Finding a Quick Ride

Keeping a positive attitude when hitchhiking is key if you plan to hitchhike during a long period of time. You never know what kind of day you are going to have, who is going to pick you up and how long you might wait. 

I heard it from everyone: “Sarah, the only reason you get a ride easily is because you are a girl traveling alone.” While there is truth to this, there are still things that you can do to make you can make increase your chances of getting picked up faster.

I hitchhiked around 170 cars throughout Europe across 30 countries and talked to hundreds of people on the road on the topic of hitchhiking.

Here I have created a list based on the things that these drivers have told me in order to help you get a ride faster. 

“How can I increase my chances of getting picked up faster?”

  • Location is EVERYTHING

Make sure you find a place where the traffic is slow and they have a safe place to pull over. 

  • Take a shower. 

Seems obvious right? I have heard horror stories from drivers, so do everyone a favor and find a shower before going. 

  • Put on clean and presentable clothes

Don’t look like you just rolled out of bed.

                                                 Appearance is key

  • Smile and make eye contact with the drivers as they pass. 
  • Take your the sunglasses, even if its in the middle of a summer day. 
  • Wear warm and welcoming colors

I wore light colors, pink, yellow or whatever appears to be friendly. Many drivers told me they have picked me up because I wore pink. 

  • Make a pretty sign 

If you can get some bright paper, I highly suggest that. Decorate it with smily  faces, flowers and even add a small greeting in the language of the country you are in (Ex: in Spain you can add “Hola, gracias or buenos dias.” 

  • Get enthusiastic. 

Let the people see that you are having fun. Wave with one hand or even do a small, silly dance.  

  • Give free cookies

 I hitchhiked with a man from South Africa with dark skin and he owed a lot of his success to writing “I give free cookies” on his sign.


Above all, stay smiling and be positive! 

Don’t forget to also check out: 


  • Do you have any tips on getting a ride faster?
  • Share below and don’t forget to check out the video in English or Spanish and subscribe to the channel. 


Sarah - thenomadicdreamer.comHitchhiking: Finding a Quick Ride