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Friends in a New City

friendsLife is so much easier when you have friends. This is especially true if you’re moving to a new city or even when traveling. That’s why it’s imperative that you learn how to make friends quickly. Locals can help guide you and tell you the most important things in a particular area that you probably wouldn’t find on the Web.

Benefits of Having Friends in a New City

Now it may be a bit cynical to simply make friends because of the benefits you can get from doing so, but it’s still fact of life that they can make your life much easier.

    • They know where you can go for everything. Whether it’s the best bars, restaurants, coffee, book stores, or parks, they can point you to the right direction. This is truly helpful when you want to know where to go for the best prices. Tourists will surely appreciate this sort of information so they can avoid wasting their money on tourist traps.
    • They know which places to avoid. We aren’t just talking about the overpriced places or the areas that are boring. We’re also talking about the dangerous places where you don’t want to be walking alone at night. In fact, even in the US there are places where you don’t want to find yourself in even in broad daylight. They are that dangerous.
    • They make for great companions. Eating out or watching a movie seems pretty depressing when you’re alone. At least with friends, you have someone to talk to and have fun.
    • They can help in emergency situations. At least you won’t have to rely on your own devices when you get in trouble.
    • Friends can introduce you to new people, who can then become your friends too. Networking is a sure way of making new friends.

Now to be fair, it may be the best approach if you don’t make it obvious that you’re making friends simply for the benefits. Think of it as a quid pro quo arrangement. If you’re going to expect them to help, you should also expect them to ask help from you as well.

Making Friends after Moving to a New Home

001Moving to a new home can be a traumatic experience, and this is especially true when you move into a city where you don’t know anyone. It is one thing to change addresses in the same city, but it’s especially upsetting when it’s a new city.

So when you move to a new home, the first thing you need to do when learning how to make friends in a new city is to find out if you know anyone who lives there. Exactly why did you move to that new city? There are two typical reasons—either you want to be closer to friends and family, or it’s because of your job.

If you moved there because of friends and family, the job of knowing how to make friends in a new city is half done. You already have friends to begin with. Then these people can introduce you to new people, and you can become friends with them. Find out what you have in common besides knowing the same people. See if you share a particular interest.

Now if you moved because of work, start with your coworkers. Hopefully you can find someone there you can have a conversation with. Making friends is all about relating on a personal level, so if you want to make friends then you can try talking about non-work related topics during your breaks.

Your neighbours are also a good prospect. While some neighbours are aloof, most are rather congenial and they are actually welcoming of new people. Just be pleasant and polite when they approach you, even if you think you have nothing in common with your neighbours.

There’s also nothing stopping you from making the first move and saying hello to them. Tell them that you just moved in. Ask them about where to go for shopping and for groceries, and about the entertainment options nearby. That should spark a nice conversation. Avoid the divisive topics such as religion and politics.

Making Friends in College

Now this one is a bit easier. You really have to be anti-social not to end up having friends in college. After all, you’re already with people with whom you have lots in common.

002So talk to the people in your dorm and get to know them. Talk to your classmates and find out about their majors. Find a club, organization or group that shares your passion and join in. Go with them to parties and meet new people.

As time passes, friendships should develop naturally. Just don’t be a jerk, and you’ll be fine. And of course, make sure your studies are a priority. Besides, if you don’t study, you’ll be saying goodbye to all your new friends when you’re kicked out of school.

Making Friends on Vacation

003Now this can be a bit tricky. There’s always the risk of meeting and trusting the wrong people and this could lead to disastrous consequences. So you need to be prepared. You can ask people you know if they have friends in the new city you’re visiting, and you can email them or chat with them online beforehand. It’s still the “friends of friends” approach, although it’s done online. So by the time you get to this new city you’re traveling to, you already have people you know.

And while you’re there, go to online forums where other fellow Americans (if you’re travelling to another country) or people who used to live in your old city hang out. They can provide a lot of guidance too, and they can become your friends as well.

So it doesn’t matter if you’re moving to a new city or just visiting for a week or so. You really need to learn and master how to make friends in a new city. The thing about friends is that they can really help, and you will definitely need all the help you can get.

One Comment

  • Brita  says:

    I am not sure there is kind of universal recipe on how to make new friends in a new city… It does depends on personality in the first place. Of course, such things as a common hobby or common activity makes it easier to get along.