Traveling alone has many benefits, but one of the challenges is the loneliness that creeps up after a few days solo. Luckily it’s easy to make new friends while on the road. My solo trip around the world taught me how to make friends while traveling alone and I’ll share what I discovered in this post.
Stay at the Party Hostel
You’ll never be alone if you stay at at hostel designed for making new friends. The idea of resting up at a place known for parties may seem a little off putting at first, but I’ve found that dorm rooms in these places are usually quiet while the common areas are packed with people just waiting to ask where you’re from. The hostel I stayed at in Copenhagen even served free dinner to get people to come together. I never left with a full stomach, but I always walked away with 3 or 4 new people to hang with.
Reach Out to Friends and Family
Mention you’re going away and everyone you know has a friend or family member nearby. When they say I have a cousin, aunt, ex-college roommate, do you want me to introduce you, say yes. You’ll be surprised how many people are up for entertaining someone traveling alone. Don’t be afraid to meet with people who are out of your age range or families with kids. Multi-generational fun warms a lonely heart fast and you’ll get to see a side of the culture that you wouldn’t otherwise.
Social Media is a Solo Traveler’s Best Friend
A picture of me with my backpack earned me two invitations to stay with friends I haven’t spoken to in a long time. They were both travelers I met on the road over six years ago! Had I kept the trip to myself, I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to reconnect with some great people.
Couch Surfing Events
Even if the idea of sleeping on a stranger’s couch is too much for you, couch-surfing is a great way to find events that cater to people who want to make friends while traveling alone. Most events are attended by locals and travelers looking to meet new people. All you have to do is turn up with a smile and you’ll be singing karaoke with your new bestie in no time.
Maybe you have used meet-ups to practice a foreign language or play team sports at home. It’s also a great way to find new friends in a new city. There’s always a tango, singles, or language exchange meet up going on in major cities across to globe. Pick a topic based on your interests and you’ll have no problem figuring out what to talk about.
Ask the Right Question
There is one opening line the works evertime. It never offends and the receiver can answer however they wish. And in most cases, it’ll open the door for a whole host of follow up question. The simple magic phrase is: Where are you from?
Have you ever made new friends while on vacation or traveling alone? We’d love to know how you did it.