The best part of travelling is not the sights you see but the memories you share with fellow travellers. So find our 15 tips on making new friends while travelling below.
1. Research your hostel’s fun factor before booking
Next to price and location ALWAYS check what your hostel is doing to create a fun and social atmosphere that is perfect for making friends. After all, the people you meet often make your trip unforgettable, not the bed you stayed in. At the Amstel House Berlin we prioritize this with our young enthusiast crew who love to travel themselves, facilities like our open bar and breakfast area, bike rental, our game room and by organizing many fun activities for everyone to join (see 3).
2. Stay in hostel dorm room
Once you selected the right hostel, book a dorm room. Staying in a hostel dorm is not only cheaper, it’s also the easiest way to make new friends while travelling. You’d have to do your best not to start a conversation with your roommates. At the Amstel we have plenty of dorms where we know many Berlin friendships started.
3. Check your hostel’s activities
Next to facilities and fun hostel staff, check what activities your hostel has in store. Checking a hostel’s facebook page and Tripadvisor is a great way to do that. At the Amstel House we like to organize fun stuff every day of the week, from free walking tours to pub crawls, from quiz nights to a daily happy hour at our Amstel House hostel Bar to all your can eat BBQs.
4. Cook in the hostel kitchen
Even if your cooking skills are not the best, new friends are easily made over the stove or sharing a meal. At Amstel House Berlin we just installed a nifty new kitchen. And best of all, we have our own simple and cheap backpacker recipes on our blog for you. No more excuses, get cookin’!
5. Hang out at the hostel bar
Hostel bars are where the fun happens. The Amstel bar is open 24/7 and we often organize fun social activities like karaoke, DJ night, pub quiz or watching sports game. Our happy hour is also famous for making lasting friendships. We even know of a Canadian couple that fell in love at our bar and are now getting hitched!!
6. Make friends on the way
A great way to make friends is on transit. Whether you’re on the same plane for 11 hours or waiting for a bus, you know you’re heading the same way. So what’s better then striking up a conversation before you get there? Exchange tips, places to stay and must-sees. Even if the trip doesn’t go as planned, there’s no better start for a new friendship than shared grieve of travel delays 😉
7. Do trips and excursions.
Look into the activities, trips and excursions offered at your destination. Whether you’re going on a cultural extravaganza, entering a ping pong tournament, a camping trip or a pub crawl, you’ll be sure to meet some people that have the same interest.
8. Go local
Want to make some local friends? Go local! The best way to get to know a new city is with a local by your side. There are many websites, but for instance Plus One Berlin (also available in Paris, Amsterdam, Barcelona and London) is a good way to make a new local friend and see the city from a local point of view.
9. Find a community of your interest
Are you a big fan of a local band or a soccer club in the city you are visiting? Are you part of an international organization? Do some research and contact the community before going.
10. Learn a new language
Signing yourself up for a few language classes is another great way to meet other travelers. Most language schools organize other fun activities outside the class room as well.
11. Check your own network
It is said that we all know everybody around the globe in 6 steps. Now make use of your own network and ask your friends if anyone knows someone fun to hang out with in the place you’re visiting. Post a message on your facebook timeline and everyone will be more then willing to help you with travel tips and local friends.
12. Bring an accessory
You’re into playing cards? You play the guitar? You draw well? You love playing soccer or throw the frisbee? Pack the needed accessories and make friends while travelling! Before you know it you’re playing a soccer match against the locals on a nice beach or a nice game of cards with new friends at the bar. Or drawing that beautiful guy/girl at the bar…. Guarenteed dating succes!
13. Write a travel blog
Writing a professional travel blog will not only get you discounts on your stays and excursions, it’s also a great way to make new friends and meet interesting people. For instance it allows you to interview other hostel guests or interesting locals for the best hot spot tips and you can always reach out to your community when heading to a new place.
Volunteering allows you to help the community, gain an impressive life experience, immerse in a new culture and make friends all at the same time.
15. Learn a new skill
Always wanted to learn how to play the guitar or how to salsa dance? Want to learn how to make the best local dishes? Why not combine travelling with learning a new skill? Plus you’ll meet fellow travellers and local tutors while you’re at it.