Hitchhiking in India – from Mandi to Shimla

Blog / Blog

road 154, Mandi, Himachal Pradesh, 175001
Listing ID: 34907820
Listing Description :

Hitchhiking is one of the cheapest ways of transport and it usually works in most countries around the world. However, there is not much information about hitchhiking in India - and if there is, it is usually not recommended by the online portals and forums. Why? According to one of the most well-known website for hitchhikers - hitchwiki, hitchhiking in India is challenging - In the words of users, "cars often became taxis without any notice" "we were usually dropped off at the nearest bus stop because they thought we were rich cause our skin colour" "we couldn't communicate with the driver because he couldn't read". The situation in India is slowly changing, of course it depends on which region you are in, but more and more people in India have access to a car, and general education is also growing at a steady pace. We decided that we will try to hitch on our way from mandi to Shimla. In our experience we can only recommend hitchhiking, we usually didn't wait too long to be picked up and we get a ride from many people, including local police 😊. From our experience we can give you the following recommendations:

  1. 1.       Hitchhike in a place where there are no taxis or rickshaws in large numbers.
  2. 2.       Try to always hitchhike on the exit road outside the city, so that it’s clear that you want to take this road.
  3. 3.       Make it clear before getting in the car that you will not pay.
  4. 4.       Hitch just on the main roads, on the smaller one you have low chance.
  5. 5.       Tell the driver a nearby destination at first and explain what you are doing in the car over time, then change a destination where you wanted to be dropped off according to the destinations you both need to get to - this can be quite difficult if the person you are travelling with does not speak English.

Hitchhiking with a sign is also an option but we haven't tried it out. Of course, you should folow some basic safety when hitchhiking, and women should be especially careful as they may unknowingly give Indian men the "hint" that they are interested in them. You can read more about safety in general on wikivoyage under Female travellers. A non-fair advantage when hitchhiking is definitely skin colour, Indians are courious what you are doing in the middle of nowhere by the side of the road and will often stop to ask questions or give you advice. When you're sitting in the car, they will sometimes invite you for a cup of local tea or a bite to eat. So, from our experience we can just recommend it.



Listing Location: