5 Ways To Make Friends Abroad

The prospect may seem daunting at first, especially if you’re not a social butterfly but making friends abroad can be such a rewarding experience. You learn about others and yourselves in the process so I’ve teamed up with a guest blogger who will be sharing tips on how you can make friends while you are on your travels:
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Every year, more travellers are choosing not to wait for a suitable travel companion, instead of going on a solo adventure and meet travel companions along the way. The number of solo bookings made on the site hostelworld increased by 42% between 2015 and 2017, a more drastic spike than in any other sector of the site. Although, the fear of not making friends and spending many weeks alone can be scary and still puts off many travellers. But there is no need to worry! There are many different ways to make friends on solo travels, below are just a few:
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Dorm style rooms
Backpacker hostels offer dormitory style rooms where you can bunk with fellow travellers. It is impossible not to chat and meet other travellers when you are all living together. As soon as you arrive and start unpacking, other travellers will begin asking questions about where you are from, where you’ve travelled and how long you’re staying, making friends instantly. Some travellers prefer to stay in luxury, with their own private hostel or hotel room, but this can make it much harder to meet people. When staying on your own, travellers have to make an effort knocking on other traveller’s rooms, which may not always be welcomed.
Local Tours
Check out Trip Advisor or ask at your accommodation for local backpacker-friendly tours. During peak seasons there will usually be a handful of other travellers on the same tour, all like-minded and looking to meet others. As soon as you join a tour, be sure to ask everyone’s name and give them yours. Everyone is more comfortable speaking with people they know the name of, compared to someone who hasn’t introduced themselves.
Volunteer
One of the easiest ways to meet other travellers is to spend days working together on a
volunteer project. Travellers can organise volunteering independently, contacting a charity while they’re abroad or with the help of a volunteer organisation. I found that deeper friendships are made on volunteer projects organised through an organisation, as typically all of the volunteers work and live together. It is difficult spending 24/7 with other travellers working, living and exploring a new country together and not make any lifelong friendships. Even the shyest of travellers are guaranteed to make friends. Whereas on independently organised projects, volunteers dropped in and out, around one day then gone the next.
Use Apps
Couch surfing is arguably the number one travel app to help make friends abroad. Helping solo travellers find accommodation with locals offering a spare room or couch. However, the app is not just used to find accommodation, there are many hang outs and meet ups posted on the app, where tourists can meet up with other travellers and explore the city or simply hang out together.
Not just camp space which is great for finding friends abroad, there are many others to
download! When meeting strangers off the internet, always meet in a public place and
always let someone know where you are going and what your plans are, to be safe.
Here are some travel apps which include features to make friends and meet fellow
travellers:
Facebook Groups
We3 Ap
City Socializer
Backpackr
Tourlina
Travel Overland
Travellers on flights tend to keep to themselves, it is rare to sit down to another passenger and start talking about all of your interests and reasons for travel. Whereas travelling overland has a very different approach, travellers are more open and happy to chat with each other. Perhaps because there is less entertainment provided on overland transport compared to airline providing films, TV and games on the back of every chair, so travellers are forced to entertain themselves by talking to each other. On the road for long hours, travelling for country to country means that travellers can really get to know each other.
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I hope you enjoyed this post. In 2019, I will make more of an effort to have guest bloggers on IKS. Since the blog’s launch, I’ve only done one guest post, which you can find here, but I definitely plan to do some more.
How do you feel about making friends abroad? Have you made any friends while on your travels? What would put you off making a friend abroad?
I love to hear from you all so let me know what you think of this post and make sure you like and subscribe!
Kel xo

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10 Comments
  • sayeedahsparkles
    February 13, 2019

    Apps are a good idea! will defintiely look into those!

  • elenxmai
    February 16, 2019

    These are such interesting tips! I’ve never travelled solo but will definitely keep these things in mind as solo travel is definitely something I want to try someday. x
    El | Welsh Wanderer

    • Its Kelle's Space
      February 16, 2019

      Thank you! Yes they really are, as someone who has travelled solo, I hadn’t thought of any of these things.
      As for solo travel, I think everyone should do it once, it’s such an amazing experience x

  • Ashanty Alves
    February 18, 2019

    Very great tips! I co-sign the volunteering tip. I’ve kept in contact with people that I volunteered with years ago. It’s nice knowing that if I wanted to travel somewhere that there’s people I can visit them. I am definitely gojng to try the App tip next time I’m abroad 💕

    • itskellesspace
      February 19, 2019

      Hi Ashanty,

      Thanks for your comment. I agree, there are some very good tips in the post. I’ll be checking out the app as well. I’m glad you liked the post x

  • Jenisha
    February 19, 2019

    Nice ideas, I’m looking forward for mini vacation outside my country.

    • itskellesspace
      February 19, 2019

      Thanks! I’m glad you liked the post.
      Enjoy your vacation 😊

  • Shehan
    April 10, 2019

    Hi, it is nicely written. I have solo travelled a lot and found similar things. Also after all my travels, I created an app for travellers as well. Please check it and sign up here. May be you will find it helpful as a solo traveller. If you like to become an ambassador in my platform, I will have good deals coming soon. https://trevolin.com/

    • itskellesspace
      April 10, 2019

      Thanks Shehan!
      It’s great to see that you have an app for solo travellers.
      I will definitely check it out.

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