Trevor Daneliuk has found a novel way to fund his travels - supporting himself by 'Twitchhiking', streaming his hitchhiking adventures on Twitch! Hitchhiking itself is far from a new way for people to see the world without putting too much strain on their wallets. For decades, travelers have stuck out a thumb to rely on friendly strangers to get them from A to B (or even part of the way there), despite the potential dangers of getting into a car with a complete stranger.
Twitch, meanwhile, is the popular live-streaming video service that allows users to stream anything they want to potential fans. It's primarily known for videogame live streams, but there are a subset of streamers known as IRL (in real life) streamers, who take their shows out into the real world. Daneliuk is one of these people - and because Twitch allows streamers to make money from their fans, live streaming his travels has given him a way to bankroll his latest adventure: hitchhiking across all fifty states.
Daneliuk has been 'twitchhiking' for over a hundred days so far, and has managed to hit forty-eight of the fifty states that he plans to cover on this trip. With only Alaska and Hawaii to go, things are going to get interesting as he has to 'hitch' plane rides (or a long drive up through Canada to reach Alaska), but having been hitching for four years over twenty-five countries, he is confident that this won't be a problem.
Talking to Business Insider, Daneliuk reveals that he prefers live streaming to blogging or posting videos because, quite simply, it's easier! Rather than having to edit and post content, he is done when the stream is over. And with around 21,000 followers on Twitch, he has plenty of fans happy to join in on the adventure - and to help him pay for it!
I wanted to show people what it was like to hitchhike, and wasn't sure what medium would be best for doing that. Livestreaming is so simple, you just hit the button to start the stream and hit another button to end the stream and then you have nothing to do at the end of the day.
Hitchhiking is an inherently social way to travel, and streaming has an extra social dynamic too it, so they sort of go together really well.
Of course, while Twitchhiking is working out well for Daneliuk, it's not something that would suit everyone! Although he has had nights in hotels (often thanks to generous fans), he often sleeps in a tent at the side of the road. He has also said that in over a thousand rides, he has yet to meet a bad person - but that doesn't mean that there aren't risks associated with hitchhiking (although these may be lessened slightly when a driver is aware that tens of thousands of people are watching the ride!). Still, his success may inspire other travelers to add live-streaming to the usual Instagram posts and YouTube videos, and opens up a new way for would-be travelers to do a little vicarious living...
Source: Business Insider