“Standard in-car travel manners apply. Offer sweets around before taking one yourself, hold farts in, speak when spoken to, never adjust the stereo from the passenger seat unless asked to and never smell your finger after itching your balls… unless asked to”
If travelling with your better half, get her thumbing curbside while you lurk in the undergrowth. If no one stops for her on a busy road within fifteen minutes, well you may want to consider breaking up with her. If you’ve got endless bundles of luggage, try to keep all that hidden too until after they’ve pulled over. Getting them to stop is half the battle.
2. Get your signal right
The thumb up is universally accepted method, but it doesn’t work everywhere. In South Africa for example, they point down at the road with the index finger. Seriously though, don’t hitch in South Africa. In parts of West Africa, South America, Iran, Iraq, and Sardinia, a thumb up is rude, literally meaning ‘up your arse’.
3. Try not to look unsightly, even if you are…
If your eyes are close together, keep your sunnies on. Try not to look pissed off, or hungry. Try not to look annoying. If you’ve got a Canadian maple leaf pin on your backpack, take it off. Throw it in the canal.
4. Pick your spot
Choose somewhere drivers can pull over safely and easily, and with good visibility, so they can see you. On the North Shore, folk like to hitch-hike at bus stops for these very reasons. Avoid motorways. Stick to national roads.
5. Leave your quiver
Try to avoid hitch-hiking with boards if at all possible. Otherwise, it’s a double whammy of reasons not to pick you up: i. Can’t (be arsed to) fit your board in ii). No one wants to encourage yet another turkey crowding up the surf.
If making it a regular shred commute, use your charm, wit and charisma to secure a stash spot for your board at the beach. In that glory summer of ’93, I left my 6’2″ Pearson Arrow at a surf shop in Pleasure Point each day, and in return all I had to do was whore myself by doing Dick van Dyke lines from Mary Poppins in my very best mockney accent. And I only had to tug them off a couple of times each all summer, max.
Once in, standard in-car travel manners apply. Offer sweets around before taking one yourself, hold farts in, speak when spoken to, never adjust the stereo from the passenger seat unless asked to and never smell your finger after itching your balls… unless asked to.