I was six months in Paris, and then six months in Italy and there was always 1 question: How do I meet new people in a new or foreign city?
This article will show you a few ways to meet other people…since a lot makes more fun with other people!
The most difficult step is to get to know someone. From there on, everything gets easier.
There are examples of these places, so you can get a feeling on how they operate and that you might find similar ones in your area.
Facebook – Everyone is on it, and therefore you should too
The majority of events, groups and associations are on Facebook, whether you like it or not. It really is the easiest way to find people and to connect.
Event groups on Facebook
First of all, there are many event groups for each city all over the world. It depends on how active the curators of the group are, but you might find something.
Just search for ‘Event YourCity‘ and start to join the groups.
For instance, I joined all the groups in Paris when I was in France.
Search for what you are looking for!
Maybe you don’t like partying, hiking or any other activity. That is no problem, you just have to search for your interests.
In my case, I like playing board games and searching therefore on facebook ‘boardgames Bologna’. This should also work for climbing, hiking or other activities.
Public events equals more people
Public events, on Facebook or on a flyer, are another way to meet other people. If you don’t find any online, try to explore the city. Walk around and look at the walls, info panels or light poles and you should find something.
The evening is even better, because then you can hear where a lot of people are. Try to see what they are doing, maybe ask and if it doesn’t interest you, continue.
Next up are public spaces, like parks, squares or gardens. Oftentimes, there are public events happening that are free and you can just join them.
For example, I went once to a garden in Bologna and they were doing a theatrical performance. Afterwards, you can ask others where they are from, what it was, which association they belong to etc.
Organisations, where you can meet other like minded people
Organisations are a big contributor to public events, but often they can’t advertise a lot. The following are a variety of examples that show where you can meet people.
These ‘normal’ organizations plan events and other activities often for free and are also well known in the community. On Facebook, these places are under the categories Community Organization, Youth Organization, Cultural Center or simply Community.
Next are artistic organizations like Camere d’aria in Bologna. In fact, it is a lot more than the categories Performance Art Theatre, because it is a big artistic community. There are often events, theaters, workshops and more.
Non profit organisations (NGO)
When I was in Paris, I joined an organization that helped other students with food and other services. Through them, I was able to meet a lot of other people and at the same time do something good!
If you are a student, it’s even easier
If you are a student, it’s even easier to meet new people
Erasmus Groups on Facebook : ESN – Erasmus Student Network
The (European) Erasmus Student Network is here to offer excursions, events, sightseeing and much more. The huge benefit is that there you can meet other students, like you.
So if you are doing an Erasmus, you should totally join this network.
I’m sure that in some form this structure exists in other countries too.
Naturally, there is also your university where you can meet other students. However, you have to bi active and talk to them.
Workaway and Couchsurfing
This is, in my opinion, the single best method to get to know a new place. You either go to work in a family or you stay for a short time as a Couchsurfer.
What is Workaway: You work a few hours a day in a family and in return you don’t have to pay for accommodation. This is a perfect way to get to know the locals and their culture.
What is Couchsurfing: You can stay with someone for a few days for free, but it’s a lot more temporary. However, it also offers chances to meet new people.
An Event brings you to a Group, that brings you to your community
Finally, it takes some time to get to know new people. Normally, you join a lot of the groups and slowly you filter what you like. What you end up with are few, but close friends and places where you will spend your time.