The plight of making friends in London!
Meeting people in London is hard! And if you're like me and are coming to London knowing absolutely no one, it's really quite frightening. I'll admit that my first month in London was an emotional roller coaster - I cried alot! and I even contemplated giving up and going home. I'm so glad now that I didn't. Pondering moving abroad? and/or travelling the world?… take the leap and do it!
It's important to have a group of mates over here that you can do life with and consider as your London family, we all know that life is made so much better with friends. This is one of the reasons that getting on with your housemates is so important. My housemates were my first friends in London, they helped me get through that first rocky month. If I hadn't bonded with them, I may well have left. You'll also meet people through work. Going to get togethers with your housemates and work mates broadens the scope for making new friends so if you get an invite, particularly if it's the first invite, don't you dare turn it down! There are other ways of meeting people too in the instance that your job is unsociable and your housemates are hermits! Gumtree being one of them. People often post ads on gumtree seeking new friends, people who like yourself have moved abroad and know no-one. https://www.gumtree.com Obviously be wary though, don't go meeting anyone on your own and if you do go down that route always arrange to meet up in a public place like Leicester square. If you're Aussie like myself and want to meet some fellow southerners, the walkabout is a great place to start. It's an Australian pub that transforms into a mini club later in the evening where as you can imagine everything gets pretty messy and wild. The place is packed with likeminded Aussies, safas, kiwis and every other culture under the sun! all here in London doing the same thing you're doing. So get a few snakebites into you and get chatting! if you don't know what a snakebite is you're going to be left pondering your life choices after you've tried one. Another great way of weasling your way into a social group is joining a club such as a sports club. If you enjoy running there is hundreds of running clubs around London that you can join, it's a brilliant way of meeting people and forming bonds. Interested in triathlon? Check this club out www.riversidetriclub.co.uk not all of them are free, but this one is! it's not a serious one either, you can just enjoy exercising with a group of mates.
Even after you've met someone that you can see a friendship blossoming with, the next hurdle is keeping in contact with said person so that a friendship can in fact blossom! because even though you live in the same city, London is an enormous place and so you can be an hour and a half journey or more away from each other - annoying. The only way around this is to put in the extra effort that it takes to catch up, picking somewhere inbetween that you can meet up.
The other difficult thing about maintaining friendships in London is the fact that people are constantly coming and going. I've met so many people here over the years who I've got on with like a house on fire and who I've formed quite close friendships with, but unfortunately those friendships haven't lasted because visas run out and people have to leave. The few friends I've made were here for a sweet but short 6 months before they had to go *cue sobbing.