When you are an adult, making new friends feels somehow harder. Your life spins around the same things everyday:
and the same all over again.
Most of the old friends have spread around the country and around the world looking for a job or love. It’s become difficult to start conversations with strangers.
Where could you even meet new people?
When you are on vacation, the mood is more relaxed: you are smiling more and there’s a spring in your step. On the road, you meet new people all the time, and they too seem to be in a good mood.
But how to start a conversation with an interesting person – in a foreign language?
On a trip it is easy to start with a practical question:
– Hey, do you happen to know any good car rental / campsite / nice restaurant around here?
– Could you show me the way?
When you master the basics of the local language, it is easier to approach local people. And who knows where a casual encounter on a trip will lead? With luck, you’ll get yourself a new friend for life!
If your travel plans for the summer are still open, one option to consider is to participate in an international volunteer program. What a great way to meet new people and experience something amazing! Some projects take volunteers for only a week or two, and it might be even possible to participate with family.
In addition to the cost of the flight tickets, there is usually a small fee that covers accommodation, meals, transportation and free-time activities in the destination.
If traveling is a bit beyond your means right now, here is another good (and free-of-charge) idea for making new international friends: get a good old-fashioned penpal. Correspondence is a great way to take your language skills into practice and polish them even further. Here are some places where you can find penpals:
A mighty mix of language learning professionals, engineers, designers, user interface developers, gamers and psychologists.