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Hitchhiking Statistics 2019

Each dot represents somewhere I started a hitchhiking day. The bigger/greener the dot, the more rides I got that day.


I compiled detailed hitchhiking statistics from my 269 rides in 2019, including some nerdy charts.

At 68 total days hitchhiking, this was a relatively light year for me compared to other years over the past decade, but the stats are interesting none the less. 2019 started in Fes, Morocco and spanned across a dozen countries within Africa, Europe and North America, ending in Flagstaff, Arizona.

I kept track of distances traveled, male vs female rides, police interactions, where I slept and more.

Let's take a look:



Of my 269 rides over 68 different days (nearly 4 rides per day, hitching 1.3 times per week) I traveled a total of 16,286 kilometers (10,120 miles) purely by hitchhiking. That doesn't count buses, planes or rides from friends and the like. That works out to about 240 km (149 miles) traveled per day of hitchhiking, or 60 km (37 miles) per individual ride.


The most rides I got in one day was 13, hitchhiking from Odem, Israel to Jerusalem in February, which was only 244 kilometers. The most common amount of rides I'd get in one day was two or three, which happened thirty times.



The longest I traveled in a single day by hitchhiking in 2019 was 867 km (538 miles) in April from Aytre, France to Madrid in Spain. The shortest was just 4 km (2.5 miles) across Arecibo this past December in Puerto Rico.

By far, a solo male was the most likely to pick me up. Next would be a group of two males or more, or a mixed group (like a couple). Just over 10% of my rides hitchhiking in 2019 came from twenty-nine different females driving on their own. The least likely gender combination was two or more females in a vehicle, which only happened four times in 2019. It's worth noting that I still counted babies as people, so if two women and a male baby picked me up, I still counted that as "mixed."

Many drivers are generous, and about a third of the days I hitchhiked in 2019 I was offered some kind of meal by at least one driver, or often a small snack, coffee or cold drink. These numbers might be slightly higher, as I may have spaced on a sandwich or two while documenting after a long day on the road.


Not just food, but 12% of the days I hitchhiked in 2019 I was offered beer or booze as we cruised down the road.


Being offered weed is also common in some parts of the world, which happened at least once on 11.9% of the days I hitchhiked in 2019. Oh yeah, and that one guy who offered me molly... that happens occasionally too. Like food and beer, these numbers are probably slightly higher as I'm sure I didn't remember every single time this happened.

Hitchhiking is largely legal, but that doesn't mean curious or confused police won't interact with me once in a while. Sometimes it's because I'm walking on the highway (which in fact is illegal in some places), but often these interactions are brief or even helpful when they give me a ride a few exits up. The longest ride I got from a cop in 2019 was 77 miles, and the most interactions in a single day was three times while hitching across the border from Israel to Egypt... yeah, some of you know how that story goes.



Of the 68 days I hitchhiked in 2019 I wound up in quite a few different situations come nightfall. As you can see, I visited quite a few friends in 2019. I also used hospitality websites like Couchsurfing (CS) 19.4% of those days as well as Trustroots (TR) 6% of my hitchhiking days. "House" indicates when a driver invited me to theirs, "bus" is when a driver generously got me an overnight bus ticket to complete my journey and "woods" was that one time I came to walking through the woods in the morning... yeah, it happens. Too small to be labeled are times where I met someone through a Couchsurfer or when I camped with someone who picked me up.

These are probably the most interesting stats I kept track of, and slowly but surely I'm going through my notes dating back to 2007 to compile the complete stats from every single ride I've ever gotten over the years. It's taking a while, as you can imagine, but I'll surely post those stats once I've completed the data entry.

Happy hitchhiking everyone!

Comments

  1. Those are interesting stats, thank you for sharing!

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