Last week, I flew from Buenos Aires to Rio Gallegos, Argentina with no intention of going to Rio Gallegos, Argentina. Instead, my plan was to walk out of the airport, stick my thumb out, and try to get a ride to Puerto Natales, Chile, where I met my friend to hike Torres del Paine National Park.
Why hitchhike last week?
- It was a goal of mine to try hitchhiking once in my life.
- Rio Gallegos airport is 3:22 driving from Puerto Natales, Chile. The nearest airport in Chile, Punta Arenas is 2:45 driving, only 37 minutes closer.However, to fly to Punta Arenas one way from Buenos Aires, the ticket was $750 with a connection in Santiago. No award space was available. To fly to Rio Gallegos was 12,500 Delta miles + $3.50 on a direct Aerolineas Argentinas flight.
- From some online research, it looked like many people successfully hitchhike in Patagonia. The consensus is that it is an easy, safe place to hitchhike.
So I stayed up all night and took an Uber to Buenos Aires Aeroparque (AEP) at 3:45 AM last Friday to catch my flight south.
Here’s what happened next: