Everyone knows it is much more difficult to meet new friends and social contacts when living abroad. As soon as you move overseas, you are in a new culture and social environment that makes gaining new social connections all the more strenuous. Whether you are an extrovert or introvert, we have put together eight tips on how to make more expat and local citizen friends.
1. Meetup Groups
Meetup groups are a great way to make friends abroad. These organizations provide a convenient setting to get to know people with similar interests and hobbies. There are also a wide variety of clubs available. It is also easy to start a conversation with others interested in the same things that interest you. Not only are you getting to meet new people, but you also are finding people with similar interests in a new environment.
2. Cooking Local Cuisine
Cooking can speak to anyone, and it is possible to establish friendships with people through shared meals by learning to make the local cuisine. Going to a local cooking class can create an excellent opportunity to meet new people and bond over a shared love of food. Another option is inviting your coworkers and neighbours to your home for a meal.
3. Joining a Club
Joining a club about a hobby you are interested in is great because it helps you meet people who enjoy the same hobbies as you. Whether it’s a cooking class, book club, or sports team, these clubs can help you with making friends and meeting a lot of people. If you have a hobby you are devoted to, search for clubs within your new city. This is the perfect moment to create amazing friendships.
4. Attending Events
Attending local events is one of the best ways to get to know locals, learn about a new culture, and make new friends. Some events to attend are art exhibitions, concerts, nightclubs, and farmers’ markets. Through following these activities, you can meet an extensive range of people while getting to know the culture and lifestyle of the people in your new city. Keep an eye open for neighbourhood events that draw your interest once you have settled into your new home. These are great places to meet people and get to know the community better.
Volunteering is a great way to make new friends overseas in your new community. Whether it is a food bank, animal shelter, and recreation center, searching for volunteering activities that are related to your favourite hobbies is a great way to make great friends.
6. Learn the Local Language
Learning the local language is helpful for your day-to-day life and helps increase your chances of getting to meet new people. The ability to start conversations with the locals in their language gives you an advantage. Also, learning a new language can be stressful and challenging, but understanding the language with others trying to get to know it can be enjoyable. Additionality, attempting to speak the local language to the locals can result in interactions that will be worthwhile and create excellent connections, even if your attempt is not perfect.
7. Go to a Local Bar
The bars and cafes in your new city are a great social center to meet new people. By frequenting a local bar or cafe, you can have the chance to make many new friends with the locals and foreigners over drinks or food. Another expat or your work colleagues may be able to list the best places to meet new people in your new expat destination country.
8. Say Hello to your Neighbours
Remember that your neighbours can become great friends, which can be achieved by saying “hello” to your neighbours. These short encounters can slowly be developed into beautiful conversations, shared meals, and feeling a sense of belonging over time
This article was written by Mark T