Definitely a viable option for good looking and fresh-smelling backpackers.
I think that anyone can get a ride if they are patient and do it right. I personally have gotten lots of rides when I was whatever the opposite of good-looking and fresh-smelling is, like after 10 days and 250 miles of backpacking since my last shower. It helps to:
- stand in a spot with good visibility and room to pull over
- smile and make eye contact
- take off hat/sunglasses so people can see your face
- some people say that signs with big letters help ("HIKER TO MY CAR: 8 MILES"), but every time I've used a sign, the person who picked me up never saw it
- be patient: everyone gets a ride eventually (except this guy: theguardian.com/wor ... lift
I'm guessing he didn't follow my suggestions!)