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How to Make Friends in a New City

Moving to a new city can be overwhelming. Not only do you have to find a new home, unpack all your stuff, and learn your way around, you also have to make new friends from scratch. Establishing new friendships as an adult isn’t exactly easy — we don’t have the benefit of a high school or university setting to strike up spontaneous conversations. But don’t lose faith, because there are ways to meet new people in new surroundings. The key often lies in getting out of your comfort zone.

“Moving to a new city is an amazing opportunity to consciously curate the kind of friendships and relationships you have,” life coach Marcella Kelson tells us. “When you move to a new city, you get to decide, who do I want to be friends with? What kind of interests would I like my friends to have?”

Of course, the first step is always putting yourself out there. “Embrace the discomfort and know you are evolving as a person because of it,” she adds. Below, three ways you can make new friends in a new city.

Ask friends to connect you

Chances are someone in your circle of friends knows at least one person they could connect you with in your new city. Take advantage of these introductions. Don’t be afraid to ask mutual acquaintances out for coffee. Most of the time, that person has been in your shoes before and will be more than happy to show you around town. And remember, next time someone asks you to do the same, pay it forward.

Go online

There are plenty of social media apps that help take online relationships into the offline world. Bumble BFF helps match you up with people that share similar interests as your own. So next time you’re planning on attending a yoga class, why not check out if you someone else on the app is looking for a yoga buddy, too? Bumble BFF will remind you that, at any moment, there are tons of people out there who are just like you looking to make new friends. (Not sure where to start? Check out our recommendations for how to get convo flowing over coffee.)

Plan a date night with yourself

“Figure out what you love to do and go there,” suggests Kelson. “If you’re interested in wine, go take a wine tasting class, or cocktail mixing.” Other activities to consider: writing classes, art openings, cooking lessons, chess tournaments, and book clubs. Not only are the possibilities endless, these activities are an easy way to take the pressure off of meeting someone new cold turkey.

“Ideally, try to find a recurring class so that you have some natural exposure to the same people and from there, friendships have a more organic opportunity to grow,” Kelson explains. Also worth considering? Volunteer work. “Working at a pet shelter or some other organization you believe in is also a great way to meet a like-minded soul.”