Hitch-hiking in Poland: advantages and disadvantages
In many ways Poland is a hitch-hikers dream. A growing European power but with a lack of transport infastructure, Poland is a country crying out to be hitch-hiked. The positives are so numerous, hitch-hiking used to be very common in Poland and so people know the concept. The lack of motorways makes it easy to hitch-hike legally, with a constant flow of traffic. A large percentage of the population are bilingual to some degree, with a good level of English amongst the young. Even the undercurrent of religious devotion can work in your favour, as a good turn deserves another. Trains are a cheap, if slow, alternative if you ever find yourself running out of light or time. A remarkably useful route planner can be found by following the link here.
Polish cities tend to cover a large surface area and finding the edge of a city can be tough. This is especially true in the Silesian conglomerate as you might walk straight out of one city into another one. English may not be spoken outside the big cities’ young population, so be prepared for a lot of clumsy attempts at consonant clusters because Polish is not the easiest language to learn. In the winter, Poland, to put it mildly, is extremely cold, so be prepared for the worst if trying to hitch-hike in winter. Polish roads are also infamously bad, so also give up any notion of travelling long distances fast.
We hitch-hiked in Poland as part of our ‘Farewell to Poland’ trip in 2010. Ania lived in Poland from her birth until 2010. Jon lived in Poland between 2007 – 2010. We have crossed the border more times than we can remember and drunk a wide variety of vodka (we recommend Wódka Gorzka Żołądkowa ) and beer (Lech everytime).
When hitch-hiking in Poland we covered 886km.
This was our route:
If you have any questions, enquires or observations about Poland then feel free to contact us.