Moving to a new city can be equal parts exhilarating and intimidating. While it’s easy to Yelp places to see, eat and discover, finding friends to experience these new activities with isn’t quite as easy. If you’re worried about how to make new friends in a new place, here are a few easy ways to venture out of your comfort zone and forge new friendships.
1. Check Past Connections
First and foremost, check in with past connections to see if you know anyone in the area. Social media sites like Facebook and Instagram are great ways to connect with people you may have lost touch with either from high school, college or past jobs. Create a post letting your friends know that you’re relocating and would love to be connected with anyone who lives in the area. Most people are open to meeting up with new transplants and offering them tips and suggestions.
2. Join a Local Newcomers Club
Thousands of people relocate every year and more people than you think are probably in the same boat as you are. A simple Google search for newcomers clubs near you will bring up local groups with meetups designed to connect you with your local community members.
3. Look on Meetup.com
One of the best sites for newcomers is meetup.com where you can search for local meetups in the category of your choice. Whether you’re looking for an Outdoors & Adventure group or want to find a local fashion club, this site has anything and everything you could possible want in a meetup.
Another great way to get out of the house and meet new people is by volunteering. If you have children, look into volunteering at your kid’s school so you can not only meet the teachers, but you can also meet other parents and get more involved in the community. Other volunteering options you might want to explore are local charities, animal shelters or hospitals.
5. Introduce Yourself to Your Neighbors
While meetups and volunteer groups are great ways to meet people, there’s nothing quite like making friends with your neighbors. Not only do you already have common ground to talk about, but it’s also nice to have a community close by. Take initiative by inviting your neighbors over for a casual barbecue or luncheon to get to know them—it’s a great way to break the ice and start building a community of friends.
6. Join a Local Gym or Sports Club
There’s nothing quite like the love of the same sport to bring people together. When you were younger you used to make friends from your after-school activities; as an adult it’s not that much different! Whether it’s a local sports club, recreation league or a gym, be sure to explore all the fitness options in your area and see which would be best for you.
7. Go to Your Kids’ Activities
When your family moves somewhere new, you as well as your partner and children will want to foster a new community of friends. An easy way to do this is to meet other parents through sports games, practices or carpooling. Introduce yourself to fellow parents and check in to see if they could use an extra hand coordinating snacks or carpooling to and from practice. Not only will this help you meet other parents, but it can also help your children make friends faster.
8. Join a Facebook Group
While there are a lot of out-there Facebook groups, there are also a lot of great ones for making new friends. Whether it’s a local book club or a something a little more niche, it can never hurt to check out what local groups are in your community.