Getting the Most out of Life

How to Meet People in Your Area If You’re in a New State

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Moving to a new city isn’t easy, especially if you’re going alone and you don’t know anyone else there. If you’re out of college, not interested in hanging out with your colleagues, or just want to branch out a bit, it can be particularly difficult to make new friends.

Curious about how to meet people in your area? Check out the following tips and stories from a few folks who have recently walked the walk.

The Best Ways to Meet People

In general, the best way to meet new people is to get out of the house. It’s easier said than done, but you can’t kick-start your social life by sitting on your couch. Try joining volunteer programs, fitness classes, sports teams, and professional organizations.

Think it’s awkward to go out by yourself? Use Meetup to connect with others who share similar interests and are looking to meet new people. Whether you’re into movies, running, yoga, gaming, or just having a good time, you’re bound to find a group that’s right for you. There are groups specifically for people new to the city, and singles events for those looking to find something more than just friendship.

Making New Friends in Texas

Jasmine Crockett, president of Crockett Public Relations, moved from Alabama to Texas as a recent graduate. As a working professional, she found it hard to establish a social circle. She wasn’t satisfied with the options for meeting new people available to her, so she took making new friends to a new level by establishing the Dallas Blogger Collective.

“We’ve only been around less than a year and we have more than 200 bloggers from all niches in this group,” Crockett said. “I’ve made some really great friends through this, and it also helps other bloggers or new people moving in state to know there is a community here that shares their similar interests.”

Erika Smith, a mom of three who works in media relations for Personal Trainer Food, recently moved to Fort Worth, Texas, after a string of moves over the last decade. She has plenty of experience when it comes to how to meet people in your area, and she suggests joining groups on Meetup. She was able to quickly find a running group along with a few mom-oriented groups on the site.

“One great venue for meeting other moms is Central Market in Southlake, Texas,” Smith said. It has a separate area with an enclosed playground in which kids can play, which lets adults focus on forming new friendships while their kids have fun in a safe environment.

Making New Friends in Florida

Melissa Sweredoski of Kip Hunter Marketing moved from Maryland to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, after graduating from college, and she knew no one when she got there. Her approach was to sign up for Tinder and Coffee Meets Bagel, which are dating sites, even though she was expressly looking for new friends.

“Meeting people who already have a network can be beneficial and a little easier if you’re shy,” she says. “I also started to attend business network groups. In Fort Lauderdale, there is an abundance of nonprofit/networking groups where friendships can be made.”

Find a Common Interest

The easiest way to bond with people is to have a common interest. Whether it’s cheering for the same sports team at a bar, watching the same TV shows, playing an instrument, being a foodie or wine connoisseur, or volunteering for a cause, try to meet people who love the same things you do. You will be able to connect with them quickly, and meaningful friendships will surely follow.

Paula Pant is the founder of award-winning website and a journalist and blogger specializing in personal finance, real estate and lifestyle design. She has been featured more than three dozen publications, including Forbes, DailyFinance, Marketplace Money, Business Insider, Inc. Magazine, and many more.