I think I have evolved into a more “social traveler.” Always looking to expand my friend’s list and not the friend’s list on Facebook, always approaching new people, either online or in person, and trying to create relationships with people I have never seen in my life before. Nobody deserves to trek this world alone.
And that’s made my traveling experience so much more interesting and desirable. There’s a spark that ignites in my soul that fills me with the passion for creating emotional connections between me and the cultures.
So, I have created this ultimate guide to help anyone make friends with locals and people abroad.
And it works.
Read today’s post:
How to Find the Perfect Travel Partner
Ask Friends or Family
Asking any family members or any friends if they would like to plan a trip together is the first step to finding your travel companion. The obvious reason why asking family or friends is because you guys already have a personal connection. Additionally, traveling with friends and family truly helps create lifelong memories that can be shared for years and years to come. Furthermore, you won’t have to feel so anxious when trying to make friends with locals because you will have someone there cheering you on!
For example, my father is probably my best travel partner simply because he is very talkative and never hesitates to make someone feel like a friend.
Make sure to match the energy levels of your potential companion to the itinerary of your planned trip. If you are going to Cancún to relax on the white sandy beaches and bask in the sun, don’t travel with someone who’s looking to continue walking. Instead, find someone who will want to enjoy the beach too.
If neither family or friends can tag along with you on your travels, try asking them if they know anybody who wants to travel with you or if they are looking for someone to travel with. Expanding your network is a good way to find travel companions. This can also be done on social media.
What makes meetups so useful is they group you with complete strangers and at the end of the day, you will find yourself having to add more friends to your list. This is the power of meetups. People who were strangers at 12 in the morning are now close friends at 3 in the afternoon.
There are two effective ways of using this method that will guarantee new friends and potential travel partners.
- Attend a meetup in your area that suits you, whether it’s hiking or photography, you choose. I attended an hour long hiking event, and it helped me find a few travel partners. For example, I met a guy who was sharing his stories from when he had been in the military, and we connected throughout the whole tiring hike simply by exchanging stories. It all felt so natural. There was no seclusion, and nobody felt left out. Additionally, the events you attend get your mind off of feeling nervous and antisocial, and instead, will make you feel connected to everyone because they share the same interests as you. And why do we choose the friends we have? Because we are able to relate to them personally, and we share similar passions which make conversations easier!
- Attend a meetup while traveling. If your friends or family can’t tag along on your travels and you already bought your ticket, try joining a meetup at the country/city you are visiting. This is great if you can’t speak the local language, for there are meetups that include English speaking people. Furthermore, you get rid of feeling pressured when trying to approach locals.
Meetups and online communities equal each other when trying to find a travel partner. The only difference is that online communities help those who are shy and reserved, whereas meetups involve face-to-face interactions. When I set my goal to interact with as many locals as I can, I came across a mental blockade. The feelings of anxiousness, fear, and nervousness overcame me. But it’s okay! We have all been there.
Luckily, with all these friendly, helpful communities, you can begin a relationship with someone over the internet in the safety and comfortability of your home. You can begin talking to someone and develop your relationship with that person more and more until you feel comfortable enough to invite them on a trip with you!
These are a few of my favorite online communities that are filled with wonderful and friendly people:
Nas Daily is a Facebook lover that uploads 1-minute videos every day talking about whatever the hell he chooses! But, what makes this internet group so amazing is the online environment he has created, and he has perfected such a sociable atmosphere that everyone is your friend, literally! Most of the comments on his videos are by people who welcome everyone into their country and even offer their help to show you around their city.
Here are some examples:
Those are just a few out of the thousands of examples of how these people exert a positive vibe as well as create a friendly community in the Nas Daily page. But like Nas told me, “Nas Daily makes it easy for you!”
While this Facebook group is exclusive to Nomadic Matt’s Superstar Blogging Business Course, there are numerous people who go beyond the formal course by creating a more personal connection with everyone. Every single person in this group tries their best to help you and their kindness, honestly, never ceases to amaze me.
Here’s an example of how you can find travel mates through this course:
Overall, joining online communities/groups is a great way to find new travel companions. All you have to do is search for a travel bloggers group on Facebook, and ask if anyone is traveling to “name of the country.” Almost all of the people will be eager to meet up and join you on your travels!
Here’s an example of how a good friend of mine, Chelsea (who has her own travel blog called, The Heart of Travel) was able to make a wonderful friend through an online group. This is the perfect way to show you how online groups can truly make your travel experience 100x times better!
I couldn’t have said it better myself Chelsea!
This a great online website that allows thousands of travelers to announce they are looking for travel companions in the country they are visiting. All you have to do is create an account and start searching for new travel buddies.
Lonely Planet is one of the largest and well-known travel websites in the world. With thousands to millions of daily users, not joining their online community is ridiculous. The users include a short paragraph about them and include where they are staying, which helps when trying to find the right person to travel with. The internet is full of people with the same interests as you, searching for new people to meet and make new friends with.
Simply Approach the Locals in the Country You Are Visiting
If you have seamlessly failed to attend meetups or join online communities, there is still one option on the table for you to find the perfect travel friend! This is no secret, but it does require the overcoming of mental blockades. I know how frightening it is to walk up to a stranger and ask for help or to ask for any recommendations, or if they would like to show you around their beloved city. So, here are a few tips on how to find a travel buddy in a country you know nothing about:
- Ask them what kind of food they like to eat – Food is the one thing that truly engages you in a culture. Food is what retains the hints of the authentic culture. Food allows us to digest a country’s culture, figuratively and literally. Asking a local what they like to eat shows you are determined to learn about their culture while showing curiosity towards them personally.
- Ask how to become a local – Showing that you are sincerely interested in their culture will surely help you create friends and even a travel buddy, who will show you what it means to be a local.
- Approach individuals or small groups – Approaching individuals or small groups help destroy that mental blockade that’s making you doubt whether or not you should approach them. Furthermore, you get to take advantage of the 1-on-1 interaction which will increase your chances of making them your new friend!
These are the best tips to finding the travel partner you’ve always wanted. Utilizing this guide will help you find someone to travel with, either before or during your amazing trip!
As travelers, we come across a feeling of disconnection during our vacations. There comes a time where you will miss everything that completed your daily routine. Taking the same route home, shopping at the same store, and grabbing your coffee at the same café. That’s all gone.
But, you don’t have to feel alone! You can always travel with someone, or make friends abroad. Traveling with friends makes every trip much more memorable. You will never feel lonely, and you will always have a smile on your face. It’s that moment that you think to yourself, “Traveling couldn’t be better!”
P.S. You can follow me on Facebook and help me create a global community for everyone to make new friends!