The first time I ever heard about hitch-hiking was in the movies. As a kid, or even as a teenager, I do not remember seeing people on the road waiting for a ride. Recently, I guess that due to the increasing touristic demand in Iceland, I constantly get asked about this mean of transportation. So I wondered, is Hitch-hiking in Iceland possible?
To begin with, let’s define what hitchhiking is, so we all know what exactly we are referring to. Hitchhiking is traveling from one place to another by getting free lifts in passing vehicles. A traveler stands by the road with their thumbs up so drivers know they are requesting a ride. I have never tried this method before, nor have I met any hitchhiker. That is exactly why I have been holding on to this article, I just wanted to get the right information for you. So without further due, let’s get started!
If you ever wondered if Hitch-hiking in Iceland was possible, the answer is yes. It is not illegal yet there are some points that would need further explaining. In Iceland, the thumb up method is indeed recognized. Wearing bright colors so you can easily be spotted and having a sign showing your destination might help as well.
We cannot discuss about hitchhiking without mentioning money. The reason why travelers go hitchhiking in Iceland is to save up money. It is one of the cheapest ways of traveling, and saving up money in Iceland is a huge advantage.
Although economizing is a very attractive idea, to most hitchhikers, the main advantage of this practice is the deep connection you get with local people. You get to know them, share hours of rise speaking about their own country, their culture and way of living. So who knows, this driver can be a friend forever!
Iceland is a friendly country; it seems that many people are willing to pick up travelers on the road. And if you are hitch-hiking in Iceland, it is good to know that most Icelanders speak English! This is a great opportunity to strike up a conversation and communicate with a local! Besides being friendly, Iceland is also one of the safest countries in the world. That is indeed an important thing when you will actually be waiting by the road to get a ride with strangers.
Iceland does not have a high population density. Current population of Iceland is 334.252 people and about half of them live within Reykjavik and the capital region. This means that there are many areas of Iceland where population is scarce and solitude is all around. When hitch-hiking in Iceland, be sure to choose those routes where the traffic is denser. You just do not want to wait for hours and hours without a single car passing by, right?
The weather also concerns hitchhikers. Icelandic weather is very unpredictable and regardless of the season, it is wet and windy. Always have a plan B if the weather does not help. There are official websites to check updated forecasts. We highly recommend them as storms in Iceland can be sudden and even dangerous.
Hitch-Hiking in Iceland – The Cheapest Mean Of Transportation
Make sure you carry enough food and drink just in case. Having a road atlas is also a great idea as in some areas mobile coverage can be poor. And probably the best advice we can give, always remember that safety comes first! Stand in a safe area of the road and make sure you can easily be seen by drivers.