What’s the best thing about traveling and throwing yourself into another world without a safety net? The new experiences, of course! Nothing expands your worldview or stretches your mind like experiencing something entirely new. That goes for people, too. Whether you’re traveling solo and looking for some company, interested in talking to locals for the inside scoop and the non-tourist perspective, or just looking to meet some wonderful new people, some of the strongest and most unique friendships of your life will be forged far, far from home!
Sounds fun, right? But how do you actually meet people when you don’t know, well, anything about where you are? Look no further
Ask the Internet
With today’s technology, no problem is too difficult to solve. If you’re looking to meet people beyond your fellow tourists, download the Party With a Local app, a free resource that connects you with people who are interested in playing host to do just that.
Travel Buddies offers a similar service, but connects you with other travelers looking for friends and sorted by proximity
Airbnb can also be a great place to look. Did you know that they can connect you with amateur guides as well as available rooms? Many locals love showing you their city, and they can share some of the best hidden spots. Look for someone who shares your interests and is willing to spend a day as your companion.
Stay With Locals
Whether they’re listed as guides or not, making Airbnb or Couchsurfing your plan for the night can be a great way to dive deeper into the local culture. If you can find a program that will connect you with a host family for your stay, even better! It’s a rare privilege to see inside the homes and lives of people across the world, and it can lead to a very rich experience.
If you’d rather keep your own space at night, it’s still worth it to look for hotels and bed and breakfasts that are set off the beaten track and not marketed to vacationers. You’ll end up seeing parts of the city and meeting people you wouldn’t otherwise.
This can be one of the best ways to really throw yourself into a new place, while simultaneously giving back in thanks for the incredible experience you’re having. You’ll find that everyone is warm, welcoming, and helpful to visitors who are willing to pitch in to support the local community!
Keep Your Eyes Open
You never know what opportunity will present itself. If you see a game of pick up sports in the park, ask to join! If someone is struggling to carry an armful of shopping backs, lend a hand by carrying one to their car! Be aware, stay open, and get ready for a unique adventure!