Certainly one of the neatest ways of getting where you want to go for nothing is to hitch. In the city it’s a real snap. Just position yourself at a busy intersection and ask the drivers for a lift when they stop for the red light. If you’re hitching on a road where the traffic zooms by pretty fast, be sure to stand where the car will have room to safely pull off the road. Traveling long distances, even cross-country, can be easy if you have some sense of what you are doing.
A lone hitch-hiker will do much better than two or more. A man and woman will do very well together. Single women are certain to get propositioned and possibly worse. Amerikan males have endless sexual fantasies about picking up a poor lonesome damsel in distress. Unless your karate and head are in top form, women should avoid hitching alone. Telling men you have V.D. might help in difficult situations.
New England and the entire West Coast are the best sections for easy hitches. The South and Midwest can sometimes be a real hassle. Easy Rider and all that. The best season to hitch is in the summer. Daytime is much better than night. If you have to hitch at night, get under some type of illumination where you’ll be seen.
Hitch-hiking is legal in most states, but remember you always can get a “say-so” bust. A “say-so” arrest is to police what Catch-22 is to the Army. When you ask why you’re under arrest, the pig answers, “cause I say-so.” If you stand on the shoulder of the road, the pigs won’t give you too bad a time. If you’ve got long hair, cops will often stop to play games. You can wear a hat with your hair tucked under to avoid hassles. However this might hurt your ability to get rides, since many straights will pick up hippies out of curiosity who would not pick up a straight scruffy looking kid. Freak drivers usually only pick up other freaks.
Once in a while you hear stories of fines levied or even a few arrests for hitching (Flagstaff, Arizona is notorious), but even in the states where it is illegal, the law is rarely enforced. If you’re stopped by the pigs, play dumb and they’ll just tell you to move along. You can wait until they leave and then let your thumb hang out again.
Hitchin on super highways is really far out. It’s illegal but you won’t get hassled if you hitch at the entrances. On a fucked-up exit, take your chances hitching right on the road, but keep a sharp eye out for porkers. When you get a ride be discriminating. Find out where the driver is headed. If you are at a good spot, don’t take a ride under a hundred miles that won’t end up in a location just as good. When the driver is headed to an out-of-the-way place, ask him to let you off where you can get the best rides. If he’s going to a particularly small town, ask him to drive you to the other side of thy town line. It’s usually only a mile or two. Small towns often enforce all sorts of “say-so” ordinances. If you get stuck on the wrong side of town, it would be wise to even hoof it through the place. Getting to a point on the road where the cars are inter-city rather than local traffic is always preferable.
When you hit the road you should have a good idea of how to get where you are going. You can pick up a free map at any gas station. Long distance routes, road conditions, weather and all sorts of information can be gotten free by calling the American Automobile Association in any city. Say that you are a member driving to Phoenix, Arizona or wherever your destination is, and find out what you want to know. Always carry a sign indicating where you are going. If you get stranded on the road without one, ask in a diner or gas station for a piece of cardboard and a magic marker. Make the letters bold and fill them in so they can be seen by drivers from a distance. If your destination is a small town, the sign should indicate the state. For really long distances, EAST or WEST is best. Unless, of course, you’re going north or south. A phony foreign flag sewed on your pack also helps.
Carrying dope is not advisable, and although searching you is illegal, few pigs can read the Constitution. If you are carrying when the patrol car pulls up, tell them you are Kanadian and hitching through Amerika. Highway patrols are very uptight about promoting incidents with foreigners. The foreign bit goes over especially well with small-town types, and is also amazingly good for avoiding hassles with greasers. If you can’t hack this one, tell them you are a reporter for a newspaper writing a feature story on hitching around the country. This story has averted many a bust.
Don’t be shy when you hitch. Go into diners and gas stations and ask people if they’re heading East or to Texas. Sometimes gas station attendants will help. When in the car be friendly as hell. Offer to share the driving if you’ve got a license. If you’re broke, you can usually bum a meal or a few bucks, maybe even a free night’s lodging. Never be intimidated into giving money for a ride.
As for what to carry when hitching, the advice is to travel light. The rule is to make up a pack of the absolute minimum, then cut that in half. Hitching is an art form as is all survival. Master it and you’ll travel on a free trip forever.
There is a way to hitch long distances that has certain advantages over letting your thumb hang out for hours on some two-laner. Learn about riding the trains and you’ll always have that alternative. Hitchhiking at night can be impossible, but hopping a is easier at night than by day. By hitchhiking days and hopping freights and sleeping on them at night, you can cover incredible distances rapidly and stay well rested. Every city and most large towns have a freight yard. You can find it by following the tracks or asking where the freight yard is located.
When you get to the yard, ask the workmen when the next train leaving in your direction will be pulling out. Unlike the phony Hollywood image, railroad men are nice to folks who drop by to grab a ride. Most yards don’t have a guard or a “bull” as they are called. Even if they do, he is generally not around. If there is a bull around, the most he’s going to do is tell you it’s private property and ask you to leave. There are exceptions to this rule, such as the notorious Lincoln, Nebraska, and Las Vegas, Nevada, but by asking you can find out. Even if he asks you to leave or throws you out, sneak back when your train is pulling out and jump aboard.
After you’ve located the right train for your trip, hunt for an empty boxcar to ride. The men in the yards will generally point one out if you ask. Pig-sties, flat cars and coal cars are definitely third class due to exposure to the elements. Boxcars are by far the best. They are clean and the roof over your head helps in bad weather and cuts down the wind. Boxcars with a hydro-cushion suspension system used for carrying fragile cargo make for the smoothest ride. Unless you get one, you should be prepared for a pretty bumpy and noisy voyage.
You should avoid cars with only one door open, because the pin may break, locking you in. A car with both doors open gives you one free chance. Pig-backs (trailers on flatcars) are generally considered unsafe. Most trains make a number of short hops, so if time is an important factor try to get on a “hot shot” express. A hot shot travels faster and has priority over other trains in crowded yards. You should favor a hot shot even if you have to wait an extra hour or two or more to get one going your way.
If you’re traveling at night, be sure to dress warmly. You can freeze your ass off. Trains might not offer the most comfortable ride, but they go through beautiful countryside that you’d never see from the highway or airway. There are no billboards, road signs, cops, Jack-in-the-Boxes, gas stations or other artifacts of honky culture. You’ll get dirty on the trains so wear old clothes. Don’t pass up this great way to travel cause some bullshit western scared you out of it.
If you know how to drive and want to travel long distances, the auto transportation agencies are a good deal. Look in the Yellow Pages under Automobile Transportation and Trucking or Driveway. Rules vary, but normally you must be over 21 and have a valid license. Call up and tell them when and where you want to go and they will let you know if they have a car available. They give you the car and a tank of gas free. You pay the rest. Go to pick up the car alone, then get some people to ride along and help with the driving and expenses. You can make New York to San Francisco for about eighty dollars in tolls and gas in four days without pushing. Usually you have the car for longer and can make a whole thing out of it. You must look straight when you go to the agency. This can be simply be done by wetting down your hair and shoving it under a cap.
Another good way to travel cheaply is to find somebody who has a car and is going your way. Usually underground newspapers list people who either want rides or riders. Another excellent place to find information is your local campus. Every campus has a bulletin board for rides. Head shops and other community-minded stores have notices up on the wall.
If you have a car and need some gas late at night you can get a quart and then some by emptying the hoses from the pumps into your tank. There is always a fair amount of surplus gas left when the pumps are shut off.
If your traveling in a car and don’t have enough money for gas and tolls, stop at the bus station and see if anybody wants a lift. If you find someone, explain your money situation and make a deal with him. Hitch-hikers also can be asked to chip in on the gas.
You can carry a piece of tubing in the trunk of your car and when the gas indicator gets low, pull up to a nice looking Cadillac on some dark street and syphon off some of his gas. Just park your car so the gas tank is next to the Caddy’s, or use a large can. Stick the hose into his tank, suck up enough to get things flowing, and stick the other end into your tank. Having a lower level of liquid, you tank will draw gas until you and the Caddy are equal. “To each according to his need, from each according to his ability,” wrote Marx. Bet you hadn’t realized until now that the law of gravity affects economics.
Another way is to park in a service station over their filler hole. Lift off one lid (like a small manhole cover), run down twenty feet of rubber tubing thru the hole you’ve cut in your floorboard, then turn on the electric pump which you have installed to feed into your gas tank. All they ever see is a parked car. This technique is especially rewarding when you have a bus.
If you’d rather leave the driving and the paying to them, try swiping a ride on the bus. Here’s a method that has worked well. Get a rough idea of where the bus has stopped before it arrived at your station. If you are not at the beginning or final stop on the route, wait until the bus you want pulls in and then out of the station. Make like the bus just pulled off without you while you went to the bathroom. If there is a station master, complain like crazy to him. Tell him you’re going to sue the company if your luggage gets stolen. He’ll put you on the next bus for free. If there is no station master, lay your sad tale on the next driver that comes along. If you know when the last bus left, just tell the driver you’ve been stranded there for eight hours and you left your kid sleeping on the other bus. Tell him you called ahead to the company and they said to grab the next bus and they would take care of it.
The next method isn’t totally free but close enough. It’s called the hopper-bopper. Find a bus that makes a few stops before it gets to where you want to go. The more stops with people getting in our out the better. Buy a ticket for the short hop and stay on the bus until you end up at your destination. You must develop a whole style in order to pull this off because the driver has to forget you are connected with the ticket you gave him. Dress unobtrusively or make sure the driver hasn’t seen your face. Pretend to be asleep when the short hop station is reached. If you get questioned, just act upset about sleeping through the stop you “really” want and ask if it’s possible to get a ride back.
Up and away, junior outlaws! If you really want to get where you’re going in a hurry, don’t forget skyjacker’s paradise. Don’t forget the airlines. They make an unbelievable amount of bread on their inflated prices, ruin the land with incredible amounts of polluting wastes and noise, and deliberately hold back aviation advances that would reduce prices and time of flight. We know two foolproof methods to fly free, but unfortunately we feel publishing them would cause the airlines to change their policy. The following methods have been talked about enough, so the time seems right to make them known to a larger circle of friends.
A word should be said right off about stolen tickets. Literally millions of dollars worth of airline tickets are stolen each year. If you have good underworld contacts, you can get a ticket to anywhere you want at one-fourth the regular price. If you are charged more, you are getting a slight rooking. In any case, you can get a ticket for any flight or date and just trade it in. They are actually as good as cash, except that it takes 30 days to get a refund, and by then they might have traced the stolen tickets. If you can get a stolen ticket, exchange or use it as soon as possible, and always fly under a phony name. A stolen ticket for a trip around the world currently goes for one hundred and fifty dollars in New York.
One successful scheme requires access to the mailbox of a person listed in the local phone book. Let’s use the name Ron Davis as an example. A woman calls one of the airlines with a very efficient sounding rap such as: “Hello, this is Mr. Davis’ secretary at Allied Chemical. He and his wife would like to fly to Chicago on Friday. Could you mail two first-class tickets to his 盈彩彩票 and bill us here at Allied?” Every major corporation probably has a Ron Davis, and the airlines rarely bother checking anyway. Order your tickets two days before you wish to travel, and pick them up at the mailbox or address you had them sent to. If you are uptight in the airport about the tickets, just go up to another airline and have the tickets exchanged.
One gutsy way to hitch a free ride is to board the plane without a ticket. This is how it works. Locate the flight you want and rummage through a wastebasket until you find an envelope for that particular airline. Shuffle by the counter men (which is fairly easy if it’s busy). When the boarding call is made, stand in line and get on the plane. Flash the empty envelope at the stewardess as you board the plane. Carry a number of packages as a decoy, so the stewardess won t ask you to open the envelope. If she does, which is rare, and sees you have no ticket, act surprised. “Oh my gosh, it must have fallen out in the wash room,” will do fine. Run back down the ramp as if you’re going to retrieve the ticket. Disappear and try later on a different airline. Nine out of ten revolutionaries say it’s the only way to fly. This trick works only on airlines that don’t use the boarding pass system.
If you want to be covered completely, use the hopper-bopper method described in the section on Buses, with this added security precaution. Buy two tickets from different cashiers, or better still, one from an agent in town. Both will be on the same flight. Only one ticket will be under a phony name and for the short hop, white the ticket under your real name will be for your actual destination. At the boarding counter, present the short hop ticket. You will be given an envelope with a white receipt in it. Actually, the white receipt is the last leaf in your ticket. Once you are securely seated and aloft, take out the ticket with your name and final destination. Gently peel away everything but the white receipt. Place the still valid ticket back in your pocket. Now remove from the envelope and destroy the short hop receipt. In its place, put the receipt for the ticket you have in your pocket.
When you land at the short hop airport, stay on the plane. Usually the stewardesses just ask you if you are remaining on the flight. If you have to, you can actually show her your authentic receipt. When you get to your destination, you merely put the receipt back on the bonafide ticket that you still have in your pocket. It isn’t necessary that they be glued together. Present the ticket for a refund or exchange it for another ticket. This method works well even in foreign countries. You can actually fly around the world for $88.00 using the hopper-bopper method and switching receipts.
If you can’t hack these shucks you should at least get a Youth Card and travel for half fare. If you are over twenty-two but still in your twenties, you can easily pass. Get a card from a friend who has similar color hair and eyes. Your friend can easily get one from another airline. You can master your friend’s signature and get a supporting piece of identification from him to back up your youth card if you find it necessary. If you have a friend who works for an airline or travel agency, just get a card under your own name and an age below the limit. Your friend can validate the card. Flying youth fare is on stand-by, so it’s always a good idea to call ahead and book a number of reservations under fictitious names on the flight you’ll be taking. This will fuck up the booking of regular passengers and insure you a seat.
By the way, if you fly cross-country a number of times, swipe one of the plug-in head sets. Always remember to pack it in your traveling bag. This way you’ll save a two dollar fee charged for the in-flight movie. The headsets are interchangeable on all airlines.
One way to fly free is to actually hitch a ride. Look for the private plane area located at every airport, usually in some remote part of the field. You can find it by noticing where the small planes without airline markings take off and land. Go over to the runways and ask around. Often the mechanics will let you know when someone is leaving for your destination and point out a pilot. Tell him you lost your ticket and have to get back to school. Single pilots often like to have a passenger along and it’s a real gas flying in a small plane.
Some foreign countries have special arrangements for free air travel to visiting writers, artists or reporters. Brazil and Argentina are two we know of for sure. Call or write the embassy of the country you wish to visit in Washington or their mission to the United Nations in New York. Writing works best, especially if you can cop some stationery from a newspaper or publishing house. Tell them you will be writing a feature story for some magazine on the tourist spots or handcrafts of the country. The embassy will arrange for you to travel gratis aboard one of their air force planes. The planes leave only from Washington and New York at unscheduled times. Once you have the O.K. letter from the embassy you’re all set. This is definitely worth checking out if you want to vacation in a foreign country with all sorts of free bonuses thrown in.
A one-way ride is easy if you want to get into skyjacking. Keep the piece or knife in your shoe to avoid possible detection with the “metal scanner,” a long black tube that acts like a geiger counter. Or use a plastic knife or bomb. It’s also advisable to wrap your dope in a non-metallic material. Avoid tinfoil.
The crews have instructions to take you wherever you want to go even if they have to refuel, but watch out for air marshals. To avoid air marshals and searches pick an airline which flies short domestic hops. You should plan to end up in a country hostile to the United States or you’ll end up right back where you came from in some sturdy handcuffs. One dude wanted to travel in style so he demanded $100,000 as a going-away gift. The airlines quickly paid off. The guy then got greedy and demanded a hundred million dollars. When he returned to pick up the extra pocket money, he got nabbed. None the less, skyjacking appears to be the cheapest, fastest way to get away from it all.
IN CITY TRAVEL
Any of the public means of transportation can be ripped off easily. Get on the bus with a large bill and present it after the bus has left the stop. If the bus is crowded, slip in the back door when it opens to dispatch passengers.
Two people can easily get through the turnstile in a subway on one token by doubling up. In some subway systems cards are given out to high school kids or senior citizens or employees of the city. The next time you are in a subway station notice people flashing cards to the man in the booth and entering through the “exit” door. Notice the color of the card used by people in your age group. Get a piece of colored paper in a stationery store or find some card of the same color you need. Put this “card” in a plastic window of your wallet and flash it in the same way those with a bona fide pass do.
Before entering a turnstile, always test the swing bar. If someone during the day put in an extra token, it’s still in the machine waiting for you to enter free.
For every token and coin deposited in an automatic turnstile, there is a foreign coin the same size for much less that will work in the machine. (See the Yippie Currency Exchange, following, for more info.) Buy a cheap bag of assorted foreign coins from a dealer that you can locate in the Yellow Pages. Size up the coins with a token from your subway system. You can get any of these coins in bulk from a large dealer. Generally they are about l,000 for five dollars. Tell him you make jewelry out of them if he gets suspicious. Giving what almost amounts to free subway rides away is a communal act of love. The best outlaws in the world rip-off shit for a lot more people than just themselves. Robin Hood lives!