This post's overview:
- 1 Is it hard to make new friends in London?
- 2 How to make friends in London (Expat guide to making friends)
- 2.1 Start your own blog / YouTube channel
- 2.2 Get in touch with bloggers you follow
- 2.3 Join various Facebook groups
- 2.4 Attend events on Meetup.com or Locals.org
- 2.5 Join a book club
- 2.6 Browse the posting board in a local cafe
- 2.7 Join your neighbourhood on Nextdoor
- 2.8 Join a local religious community
- 2.9 Join a Telegram community
- 2.10 Join a sports group / club
- 3 Summary of 10 best ways to make friends in London
- 4 Here are some articles about London that you might find useful:
Are you moving to London, or perhaps you recently moved here and wondering how to make friends in London? In this expat guide to making friends, I’ll give you some tips and advice on how to find new friends in London!
London is a vibrant and multicultural city that attracts people from all over the world. With its rich history, diverse culture, and endless opportunities for adventure and excitement, it’s no wonder that so many people choose to make it their home. However, finding friends in a big city can be challenging, especially if you’re shy or introverted. In this guide, I’ll provide some tips and advice on how to make friends in London. Whether you’re looking to meet like-minded people, find a workout buddy, or simply make new connections, I hope this guide will help you make the most of your time in the city, meet interesting people, have a lot of meaningful conversations and make new friends.
Is it hard to make new friends in London?
Making new friends in any city can be challenging, including London. However, London is a large and diverse city with a population of over 9 million people, so there are plenty of opportunities to meet new people and make friends. The main advantage of London is the fact that it’s very multicultural. If you’re an expat, you will likely find many people from your country there. If you’re from the UK, there is a high chance that some of your classmates or childhood friends also ended up in London!
However, on the other hand, I think that people in London are very reserved and usually mind their own business. People don’t strike up conversations too often. I’ve been going to the same fitness studio for months, and on my watch, pretty much no one ever talked to each other and made new friends there.
When we were in Berlin, we went to a gym class once and somehow, my husband managed to chat with two different people there and even got an invite to a party!
That’s why I think that the usual ways of making friends abroad don’t always work in London – but I will make sure to provide some common and also some unusual ways to make friends in London that worked for me!
How to make friends in London (Expat guide to making friends)
Start your own blog / YouTube channel
The thing that helped me to meet most of my friends in London was actually my YouTube channel. I started it over 6 years ago when I moved to London, and since then, I have been sharing useful tips for living in London, from finding the best area to live to passing your driving test and getting a UK licence.
I made sure to mention in many videos that I’m always open to meeting new people, even if it’s just for a coffee and to discuss some tops like renting a house or finding a job.
Moreover, I had a chance to meet dozens of interesting people, and a few of these people became my close friends. I’m eternally grateful to my YouTube channel for that!
Get in touch with bloggers you follow
If you don’t feel like starting a blog yourself (I get it, it’s a lot of work, and not everyone enjoys it actually), you can do just what my friends did – find some small bloggers from your city that you like and feel like you could get along with – and message them. You’ll be surprised how many people will be happy to meet!
Of course, not everyone will answer; some people are like that. But don’t let it put you off – maybe if you message 7 people and meet with 5, 2 or 3 of them will become your close friends in the future.
If we decide to move to another place at some point in the future, that’s something I would definitely be doing.
Join various Facebook groups
Another way of making friends or at least meeting new people would be joining plenty of different Facebook communities that exist in London. If you type “London” on Facebook, you will be able to find quite a few. If you’re a woman, groups like Girls vs Globe and Girls Gone International have very active communities of people, who are all scattered across the globe, and they often have people posting and suggesting to meet for brunch or a coffee there.
Attend events on Meetup.com or Locals.org
A very nice way of meeting people is through websites and apps like Meetup.com or Locals.org – both of them are similar. Some of the communities there exist on a paid basis, but lots of them are free. Meetup.com is a global platform that has been live for a very long time, while Locals.org is much newer and attracts a slightly different crowd.
Join a book club
If you like reading and would love to meet with like-minded people and discuss new books, complete reading challenges and meet new friends, I recommend joining a book club. Book clubs are usually open to people of all ages and backgrounds, and it’s a great way of spending quality time with lovely people.
Browse the posting board in a local cafe
Every neighbourhood has a local cafe or pub. I’ve seen posting boards with lots of local adverts in pretty much all local cafes – if you’re looking for a cleaner, tutor for your kids (or, perhaps, yourself), yoga teacher or a handyman – you will usually find a lot of these adverts on the local posting boards. However, sometimes, you will find information about local events and meetings – you can join and meet some of your neighbours, which is lovely!
Join your neighbourhood on Nextdoor
Nextdoor is an app that requires you to confirm your home address and therefore makes the use of the app safer than Facebook and almost spam-free. Once you confirm your address, Nextdoor will place you in your local community, where you can ask questions, answer someone else’s questions, rant about the problems in the area or organise meetings with your neighbours.
Join a local religious community
If you’re religious, then you can join your local church (or mosque, or synagogue – whichever your belief is) and meet people with similar culture and values. Some of my friends go to a local church, and they’ve met so many of their friends there!
Join a Telegram community
Telegram is a famous messaging app that is incredibly popular in eastern Europe. However, it’s gaining popularity in London as well. There are various channels that you can find there that are dedicated to life in London. Telegram communities work in very in a very different way compared to WhatsApp groups. They resemble Facebook groups in a ways; however, there are also channels that bloggers own. If they allow comments, people often have discussions and threads in the comments of these particular posts.
Join a sports group / club
Finally, another good way to meet people with similar interests, so yours, is by joining a sports group or a sports club. For example, if you like playing tennis, there are plenty of tennis clubs you can join in your area or maybe in neighbourhood areas where you can meet like-minded people and play tennis with them. Usually, this kind of clubs have a membership fee, but it’s normally not too expensive, and also, of course, that also includes time on the court.
I also know a few people who are part of the CrossFit gym. Those gyms are famous for being close-knit, like-minded communities. People go there pretty much every day and become close with other members of the cross fit club.
Maybe in some cases, you could also meet people at a local gym, especially if you often go to various classes and you don’t have any problems striking a conversation with a stranger. However, more often, it’s easier to meet people at really small fitness studios outside Central London.
Finally, for example, if you like football, also clubs in lots of areas, all around London. Even if you are a huge fan of a rare sport like figure skating, there are classes and small group classes as well as communities you can join at your local ice-skating rink. For example, Alexandra Palace or Lee Valley Club.
Summary of 10 best ways to make friends in London
I know that making friends is difficult otherwise, he wouldn’t be looking for this article online! But I really hope that I have given you some valuable tips and advice on how to make friends in this beautiful city. I tried to recommend the ways that really helped me to meet all my friends in London and that I know worked for other people I know in this city.
Even if you are the biggest introvert on Earth but still would like to make friends and go out with people from time to time someone, I’m confident that some of these ways would work for you! I hope that you will manage to find like-minded people and make friends in London!