Looking for ways to meet new people?
You’re in the right place!
Maybe you’ve just moved to a new city and you’re looking to get out there and make new friends.
Maybe you’ve lived in your city for years, but you’ve been stuck in a routine.
Either way, here’s a list of 30+ ways to meet new people.
First: The secret to meeting new people? Consistency.
Before we dive into the list, here’s a pro-tip for meeting new people.
Most people go to one meetup, they don’t have an earth-shattering time making the best friends of their life. Then…they quit.
Don’t be like that.
To find people you LOVE hanging with, you’re going to have to meet several dozen people and go to events and meetups regularly.
The more time you spend trying new events and starting conversations while you’re there…the higher your chances of meeting new people go way up.
Repeat after me: “It takes time. And that’s okay.”
Okay, let’s dive in!
Volunteering is a fantastic way to do a little good in the community, and meet other volunteers at the same time.
Often, it can be easier to connect with people when connecting isn’t the sole reason for interacting with them.
When you have a shared reason for being around each other, connection can happen naturally.
2. Cooking classes
Cooking classes are a great way to level up your cooking skills, and meet new people at the same time!
Pro-Tip: If you hit it off with people at other events on this list, you can even show off your cooking skills and invite them to a dinner party!
3. Hiking club
Feel like getting outside? Hiking clubs are great for exploring the great outdoors, breaking a sweat, and meeting new people who are also into nature!
4. Martial arts classes
Kicking and punching your way to friendship!
There’s something about physical activity that help people break the ice in social situations. My hunch is that people are too tired to feel nervous.
5. Fitness classes
Could be Tae Bo (kidding) Zumba, CrossFit, HIIT classes, or anything else that gets the blood pumping.
6. Running groups
I used to be a competitive runner, and running groups are a great way to meet new people.
Many running groups will have people at all skill levels, so don’t worry about slowing down the group if you’re just getting into running.
After a few meetings, you’ll be going out for beer and tacos soon enough!
7. Group dance classes
My wife and I took swing dancing classes for a couple of years and it was fun learning new moves.
Most mid-size cities have dance events where people get together and dance the night away!
8. Yoga classes
Ah, yoga class!
It’s a very chill way to spend a Friday night.
Pro-Tip: If it’s your first time going, be sure to stay behind after class for a few minutes and start some conversations with the instructor and some fellow students!
9. Art classes
Maybe you want to level up your doodles to drawings, or you just want to paint and sip wine.
Either way, art classes are a great way to meet new people who are fun and creative.
This one is a go-to there are 1,000s of meetups on every conceivable topic.
Keep in mind that it can be a little bit of a process to find a Meetup that you LOVE.
A rule I picked up from a reader: “I’ll go once, just to see if I like it.” This is the best mindset to have as you meet new people.
Go once, just to see if you like it!
Click here to find a meetup near you.
11. Board game meetups
Board games. More than squabbling with your Dad who wants to lend you Monopoly money at 5% interest after you landed on Boardwalk AGAIN.
There are a bunch of board game meetups that range from simple to complex. Most meetups will have a theme or BYOB (Bring your own board) options.
12. Meet people in your neighborhood!
Don’t sleep on this one
If your neighborhood has events, great! If not, take some walks around your neighborhood and stop and chat with your neighbors!
(Optional: Get involved with your neighborhood association, assuming they aren’t full of old busybodies who complain about people who don’t mow their lawns every weekend.)
13. Book clubs
You might be into reading and sharing your interpretations of books!
This is a fantastic way to meet new people because you already have something to talk about. (the book!)
14. Book readings
Check out local bookstores for readings. Be sure to stick around and meet the author and other people who enjoy their work!
15. Say yes to invites!
This is another tip to not sleep on.
Be sure to say “yes” to as many invites as possible when you’re trying to meet new people.
Invites lead to more invites, so if you’re at a new job and someone invites you out to drinks with your coworkers: SAY YES!
Putting yourself in social situations is half the battle of being more social. Plus, you’re much more likely to get invites in the future if you say yes today.
16. Dog parks
I’m a well documented cat person, but for those people who enjoy having a pet love you unconditionally, I hear dog parks are great places to meet new people. “Which one’s yours?” is basically the last conversation starter you’ll need at the dog park.
Bonus: My town has something called a Bark Bar…it’s a bar where you can bring your pup. Maybe your city has one too. It’s probably in the trendy area of town.
17. Online Groups for your interest
Have a niche interest? Live in a tiny rural town? Online/Facebook/Reddit groups are a great option to meet new people.
Over time, you can even FaceTime them and deepen the relationship.
I know plenty of people who met great friends online years before they met them in real life. Just remember to be patient!
18. Trivia night at your local bar
Oh boy! Trivia night!
A great way to flex your knowledge of obscure geography after your second beer! Also, a great way to meet new people who aren’t on a trivia team of join an existing one.
19. Cultural events in your city
Museum openings, walking tours, interesting speakers, art exhibits, these are fun ways to meet new people who are out exploring their city (just like you are)
20. Beer tasting/Brewery Tours
If you’re into beer and want to learn more about how it’s brewed, hit up a beer tasting event or a brewery tour in your city.
Chances are, there are some cool local breweries in your town.
Years ago, I even helped a local brewery bottle their beer for a day. They paid me in beer…which was great for a 21 year old me.
21. Improv classes
You don’t have to be an aspiring SNL cast member to have a good time meeting new people at an improv class.
Silly situations, spur-of-the-moment topics and learning how to “yes and…” your way to making people laugh is a great way to push your comfort zone and hopefully meet some fun people along the way.
22. Adult sports leagues
A few years ago, my wife joined a kickball league, she had a great time meeting new people at games.
If you’re a athletic person who likes a little friendly competition, joining an adult sports league could be a great option to find new people to hang with.
23. Networking events
Not just for handing out business cards and talking up the 5 year vision for your career.
The secret to “networking” is being human, and having good conversations with people. The more people you have conversations with, the higher the chance is that you’ll meet new people that you really hit it off with!
Also, online networking is an option too:
In a similar vein as networking event, conferences can be fantastic places to meet new people. I especially like traveling to new places to go to conferences that focus on topics that I’m interested in.
Mandatory tip: The conference isn’t over at 5 PM! Make sure to go to local bars/restaurants with other attendees. This is where the real fun of conferences is to be had.
25. Toastmasters clubs
Polishing up your public speaking skills, and meeting new people who are doing the same, what’s not to like?
As with other places to meet new people, be sure to stay after for 5-10 minutes to introduce yourself to some people.
Click here to find a local Toastmasters club.
26. Speed Dating
This is a fun one that many people write-off. Will you end up meeting the love of your life at a speed dating event?
What’s more likely is that you’ll have a bunch of short conversations in rapid order with new people.
Part of improving your people skills is practicing, and speed dating is a great way to practice your conversation skills.
27. Bumble BFF
Bumble BFF is a uber-convenient way to meet new people. Create an account, upload a picture, and fill out your interests and profile and get to swiping. If you match with someone, you’ll have a limited amount of time to make the first move.
Pro-tip: Get good candid pictures preferably taken by a professional.
Friend of BMC and personal stylist Peter Nguyen does this for his personal styling clients, and it makes a huge difference.
28. Self-Development groups
This one’s a little broad, but if you’re into self-development, finding a group that meets regularly can be a great way to meet new people who are constantly trying to stay motivated and improve.
29. Language learning groups
Last year, my wife and I started learning American Sign Language (ASL) and she started an ASL meetup group where people could come, have lunch and practice their skills.
If you’re into learning a new language, this is a fantastic way to meet new people and improve your language skills at the same time! Win/win!
30. Dinner at the bar of a restaurant
This is another low-key awesome way to meet new people.
Find a restaurant that you love, and sit at the bar and have dinner there a couple of nights per week. You’ll meet the bartender, staff, and people hanging out nearby.
Pro tip: If you’re feeling a little nervous about going out alone.
Bring a book and read it casually at the bar. (Meaning taking frequent breaks from reading to sip your drink, eat some food, etc.)
People WILL ask you what you’re reading. This is an easy way for other people to start conversations with you.
31. Reach out to friends-of-friends
Super underrated tip here.
If you’ve met a friend of a friend a few times, reach out to them and ask them if they want to grab some coffee.
Making friends doesn’t mean you have to start from zero! Since you already have connections in common, it’s easier to break the ice and get the conversation started!
Pro tip: When asking people to hang out, it’s important to keep the ask low-pressure and give them an option to decline. Saying “We should grab some coffee sometime” and adding “If that doesn’t work for you, that’s totally cool, I’m sure I’ll see you around!”
32. Groupon deals
This is a really outside of the box idea, but you can check your city’s Groupon deals under the “Things to do” section to find some interesting things to do that might put you in a position to meet new people.
33. Get on your city’s subreddit and ask for recommendations.
This is another under-the-radar way to meet new people. Many cities that have over…say…150K population have a subreddit.
This can be a great way to get local recommendations for things to do from people that you may not have heard of.
And there are usually new people who are moving to town that are looking for people to hang out with.
Pro-tip for US folks: Here’s a list of a bunch of US city subreddits.
Bonus tip: How to Start a Conversation at a Meetup or Event
The following is taken from this post on starting conversations.
Meetups and classes have the benefit of being structured.
Everyone signed up to be there and came specifically to gather and learn or do something together.
This takes a lot of the pressure off you because you know the people around you signed up for this!
Try some of these conversation starters to pique interest and make new friends:
Want to work on your conversation & small talk skills before you hit up some of these events?
Here are three articles to help you along!
And here’s a video on conversation skills you might check out too:
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