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For some of us, making friends is no easy task. When it comes to moving to a foreign country, it becomes even more challenging. It is our close surroundings that greatly facilitate adaptation, helping us to feel relaxed, secure and "in place", even in unfamiliar surroundings. And in case you're wondering how to make friends in a new city, this guide is sure to be helpful. Let's get started!

Let’s chat online: Communicating virtually when building connections in a new community

Communicating online is a great way to get to know people in a foreign country. Although it's hard to draw general conclusions about an entire nation, it's not out of the question to come across really interesting people who are easy to communicate with and who you would enjoy interacting with in person. Online meetings with locals can take place before your actual engagement. This allows you to create friendly relationships in advance, reducing the stress associated with your future adaptation to the new location. In the company of a friend from the local community, you would always feel more confident and relaxed.

Among the advantages of online communication are:

- It's easy;

- You can do it from the comfort of your home;

- You can choose the people you communicate with;

- You're just a button away from ending an awkward communication;

- You practice the language, and learn a lot of conversational phrases;

- You have the chance to pick people of similar age and interests;

- You can get an idea of the local people's character, their humour and their spirit.

Some platforms to make friends in a new city are InterNations, MeetUp and Findery.

Knowing the local language: Essential when wondering how to make friends in a new city

If you are planning a move to a foreign country, the investment in learning the language will definitely be worth it. As well as feeling more competitive and more confident in everyday communication, knowing traditional expressions could bring you closer to the locals. By knowing the language, you would demonstrate your respect for the local culture, which would leave no one indifferent. Furthermore, by having a good command of the language you show that you are making an effort to fit in with the new environment.

It is the ability to communicate smoothly with the people of the city you are moving to that will ensure that you can make friends easily in a new place. Direct communication with the local community would also help you when it comes to learning conversational phrases and aphorisms.

In case you are wondering how to learn a foreign language in an efficient way, here are our suggestions:

А group of friends taking pictures

Talk to real people

Don't hesitate to combine our previous advice on communicating online with enriching your language vocabulary. Attending a language course initiated in the country of relocation is also an opportunity to make friends with other students.

Watch films in your chosen language

We are sure that with today's wealth of streaming services, you will easily find interesting films and series that will not only improve your language knowledge and pronunciation, but also your knowledge of the local culture and the emotionality of your new surroundings.

Listen to music in the language you want to improve

Again, a great way to combine the useful with the enjoyable, making the most of your time when travelling or exercising, for example. The fact that the right music has a beneficial effect on stress and our overall mood cannot be underestimated.

Listen to podcasts

This is a step we recommend if you are more advanced in learning a particular language. Through podcasts, you would also gain useful experiences from successful and inspiring individuals: a topic that would definitely intrigue some of your future friends.

Knowing the local culture: An important step when networking in a new area

Naturally, knowing the language is also linked to knowing the local culture, traditions and even cuisine. An interest in the culture will make communication with the locals more natural, making it easier to maintain close relationships. As well as being useful, learning about the local culture could also be really fun. And here are some activities to give you a "peek" into the past and the traditions that have shaped a particular nation:

- Visiting a museum;

- Attending a local festival;

- Exploring traditional art;

- Practicing a traditional sport;

- Trying a traditional dish;

- Visiting a religious temple;

- Attending a parade or celebrating a national holiday;

- Visiting a historical site.

Our hobbies: A great hint when wondering how to make friends in a new city

We all know the feeling when we find out that a person who we've recently met is a football fan just like us, loves to read or usually spends the weekend watching their favourite TV shows. "You too?" is usually the happy phrase we utter, convinced that socialising with the person in question would be a pleasure rather than a challenge.

If you're still figuring out how to make friends in a new city, don't despair. One of the most logical steps to take is finding people with similar interests. This way, you'll achieve an organic communication, and the fact that you're from another nationality won't bother you.

Shared interests can be truly universal. Pets, gaming, cinema, dancing and common idols are the first we think of. When it comes to the adventures of moving with a pet to a new country, it's the people who also walk their dog early in the morning who will become the ones you have the most genuine talks with.

If you're wondering how to find people with similar interests, you can start by joining appropriate online communities, attending a themed event (group exercise class, painting workshop, or literary event) or signing up for a local club.

Making friends through communities of your compatriots

Culture shock, language barrier, loss of contact with some of the family, and differences in work culture, are among the most common challenges faced by those living outside their home country. According to a 2022 report on expat life, as many as 86% of nearly 12,000 respondents said they felt lonely and disconnected.

Immigrant communities are among the most obvious environments when trying to answer the question of how to make friends in a new city. Getting close to their members will reduce the nostalgic feelings you are likely to experience. In addition, the language barrier will not matter when communicating with them as you will be using your own language. In compatriots’ communities, you will have the opportunity to get involved in or even initiate various events such as celebrating traditional festivals of your home country.

Building close relationships with your colleagues

Despite the above-mentioned difficulties in getting used to the working culture in a new country, it is your colleagues whom you often spend the most time with. The next tip to help you understand how to make friends in a new city is quite simple: Get close to your colleagues. Don't be shy to seek their opinion and even ask for advice. Say 'yes' to lunch invitations and don't hesitate to give an idea for a company party.

Another alternative for making friends in a business environment is visiting the so-called coworking spaces. It is related to remote workers, a practice that is increasingly common in Europe and offers many positives. You can also work remotely from other locations - such as parks and cafes – again, locations that suggest the possibility of meeting new people.

As well as being open to creating close relationships with colleagues, you can also demonstrate a willingness to attend various business events - conferences, seminars and training sessions. This will not only help you develop professionally, but it will also be sure to expand your contacts - a good start to making new friends in the industry you are building a career in.

How to make friends in a new city when you are an introvert?

Moving to a foreign country is traditionally attributed to extroverted and adventurous people who usually win friends with ease. However, emigration may also be necessary for more introverted personalities. It can happen for a number of reasons, including a job promotion, a need for change, or out of curiosity about foreign culture and more.

And here are our suggestions for making contacts when moving to a new city:

Use your hobbies to make friends

As we mentioned earlier, shared hobbies often lead to instant likability and more natural communication - you exchange impressions and novelties affecting your interests without the communication happening out of obligation or politeness.

Communicate with your neighbours

Take a step towards the people living next to you. Surprise them with a kind gesture (a home-made treat, or a traditional item from your country) and take the opportunity to introduce yourself to your neighbours. You never know if an acquaintance won't turn into a real and lasting friendship.

Expanding your social circle in a new region through a friend

In case you have relatives in the city where you've moved, ask them to introduce you to their acquaintances. This way, you would hardly avoid the initial embarrassment of meeting new people, but it would certainly reduce it. Once you feel really comfortable around your new acquaintances, start spending more time with them and even take the initiative yourself by organising a get-together, or inviting them to a home-cooked dinner.

We trust that the tips provided will help you when creating a social circle in a new location. We, the professionals at Movega Removals, a company specializing in European removal services, are available for your questions and inquiries. Get in touch with us through the available contact form or chatbot feature.

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