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Things to do in Romania
- Hitchhiking is very common in Romania, and some experienced hitchhikers say it's the easiest country in eastern Europe. Usually, if you are in the right spot, you don't have to wait longer than 5 minutes. During weekends you may need a bit more patience, as roads are a little emptier. Locals also use this method on a regular basis, especially for shorter distances (up to 50km). It is not uncommon for people (especially students) to hitchhike intercity (Bucharest-Sibiu, Timisoara-Arad and Bucharest-Ploiesti are particularity common hitchhiking destinations).
Increase your chance to be picked up by using a paper with the city where you want to get to - it may save you some time especially if traveling intercity. A good spot is a bus station, road-split, or close to the city limits (see Hitchhiking Spots Romania ). Nevertheless, many if not most people will stop (provided they drive alone) - you may end up getting a ride in a 1970s rusty old Dacia or in a brand new Mercedes, in a semi-articulated truck or in a company car belonging to a big corporation. Hitchhiking is typically not dangerous (the highly aggressive, fast and disorderly driving style of Romanians may be more of a danger), but take usual precautions when using this conveyance. Inside city limits, it is not advisable to hitchhike using the traditional thumb-up hand signal, as many drivers may believe you are flagging a taxi or a route-taxi (mini-bus), and not stop. Use a destination paper instead. It is customary to leave some money for the ride (so called 'gas money', about 1-2 RON/10km), but if you are a foreigner you will not be expected to leave money and nobody will get upset. Further, most truck drivers and company car drivers will refuse payment altogether. Further, if you tell the driver where you want to get in a city, he or she will make a detour just to drop you off where it best suits you. Say "Multumesc"(|Mooltsoomesck|) (thank you) at the end. See Hitchhiking Spots Romania . Note that most Romanians are very talkative, and even if their English / French / German / whatever is extremely rusty, many will more likely than not tell you their entire life story, discuss the entire football season and/or talk politics (usually starting from discussing the poor state of roads even while on a freshly repaired road). In the end, however, hitchhiking is a mostly enjoyable experience, and, if lucky, you may even get yourself invited for lunch or dinner, offered a rum for a night, or just meet some very interesting people along the way