Hacks for Meeting People While Traveling

By: Riley Brown | Published: Aug 18, 2022

Meeting new people while you’re traveling is one of the best ways to enrich your experience, especially if you’re traveling alone. The best way to learn about culture, language, food, and “must-see” attractions is through the locals! Meeting people abroad might sound intimidating, but we’ve got you covered. If you’re planning a trip and want to know the secrets to making new friends along the way, check out these hacks for meeting people while traveling. 

Learn a few words in the local language

If you’re traveling abroad and trying to meet new people, the first barrier you might find is the language. How can you become BFFs when you can’t communicate? We recommend trying to learn some common words and phrases in the local language.

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Language learning apps like Babbel or Duolingo are great tools to help learn and memorize the language of your destination. Just start with the basics. No one expects you to be an expert. But most often, locals will appreciate you trying to learn and will be happy to help you out!

Go to local coffee shops/places that encourage talking

Spend your time in places that encourage socializing. Hostels are usually a great option because they have common areas and you’ll meet other travelers from around the world. You already have something in common with these people: you’ve come to explore! 

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Coffee shops are another great environment to meet new people. In most places, independent coffee shops will have communicable tables that encourage chatting. Surround yourself with as many people as you can to give yourself more opportunities to connect. Explore your destination. The more people you talk to, the more insight you’ll get into the places to go and things to see.

Travel off the beaten path

You’ve traveled all the way to a new place to explore, learn, and meet new people. One way you can connect with other travelers is by going off the beaten path. Most travelers are more likely to talk to each other outside of “touristy” areas. You have a better chance of meeting like-minded people to share stories and advice about your travels so far.

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Find the things worth seeing that are not tourist traps. When you meet people on this path, you know you already have something in common with them. Chances are, they might have other recommendations for other adventures, too.

Smile

The best way to meet new people doesn’t require you to speak one single word. Just smile! No matter the country, culture, or language, smiling is the best way to make a new friend. It lets people know you’re happy, friendly, and open to chatting.

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While you’re walking around and exploring on your trip, remember to keep a smile on your face to invite conversation. Thinking about it. Are you more willing to approach a grouch or someone with a pleasant smile? Smiling is the same in every language. We can almost guarantee that this will open doors to new connections.

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