How to make friends fast in a new town

Being the new person is always a bit tough but after moving four times in the last two years I’ve discovered ways to make friends fast in a new town.

  1. Get a job. A sure fire way to meet people in town is to get a job.  The first friends you make will be your workmates (hopefully!).  Find out what their interests and leisure activities are.   If you have a common interest tag along to their netball, gym, running etc session. Most people like to be able to introduce a new face.   Chances are your new job will also have you dealing with customers or other businesses.  Already you’ve found three sources of new friends.  What do you do if you are mum to some other cheeky monkeys…
  2. Contact the human resources coodinators at your partners work.  They relocate people all the times. Chances are they can put you in touch with key community group contacts like childcare or at least point you in the right direction.
  3. Join a community group.  Does the area you’ve moved to have a Lions, Scouts, or Rotary group?  Give them a call, go along to a meeting and meet the people who are part of your new community.
  4. Volunteer your time at an educational institution.  Schools, daycare and kindergarten’s are always underfunded and understaffed and often on the lookout for volunteers for reading, tuckshop, workbees, fundraising and other activities.
  5. Join the gym, sporting group or special interest group.  Gyms and sporting groups like netball, Rugby league, basketball are great for meeting people, keeping fit and staying sane.
  6. Got kids? join a playgroup. Playgroup is an association that is in most Australian states and territories.  Some groups run a once a week session, others may run every day.  The sessions usually go for two hours and the first two times you go are free.  After that it’s $40 for the year. The not-for-profit group meet in a community buildings and some have their own dedicated centres. Parents and carers take turns coordinating weekly activates and bringing tasty treats for morning tea.
  7. Utilise social networking websites.  Facebook, twitter, online forums are great places to meet people in your new area.  Search the name of your new town and see what groups come up, mothers groups, buy, swap, sell are common ones.
  8. Visit you local council.  Get on line and visit your new coucil website or better still visit there office and see what information is available for newcomers.  Councils are great places for finding out about the community health centre, registering your dog and other local services.
  9. Keep up-to-date with local media.  Buy the local paper, watch and listen to the local news channels, find the community noticeboards.  All of these sources will provide regular information through news stories, bulletins and information on what’s going on in your town.
  10. Talk to everyone and get involved.  Have a chat standing in the bank queue, at the post office, to shop assistants and go to the local events.  You just never know where your next new friend is hiding!