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Hitchhiking is a thing of the past around the world !!

Most “rides” are offered only in more remote rural areas, where public transportation is bad.

If you’re thinking of hitching, take all the precautions you would at home, such as not accepting a ride with someone who has been drinking or, if you’re female, not accepting a ride from a carload of guys. It’s always best to travel in pairs, but if you’re hitchhiking that may mean a longer wait.

Gringos are in the habit of passing you up and most Costa Ricans might think you’re rich enough to take the bus which, given the low cost and safety, is probably a much better idea.

Picking up locals is another thing, especially in remote areas. We sometimes offer rides to people walking alongside the road, usually uphill, in order to practice our Spanish until the next village. When you let them off, it’s a custom – at least among older folk, who may be as poor as church mice – to dig their hand into a well-worn pocket and ask, Cuanto cuesta? How much? Simply smile and reply, Por nada (for nothing).

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