8 ways to find like-minded friends online

Want to expand your social circle? There are apps for that. Take a look at these eight ways the digital world can help you make real-life pals.

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Are you struggling to persuade a friend to try a new bootcamp class, head to a modern art exhibition or binge watch a sci-fi boxset with you? Then it’s time to go online! The internet can be a great place to track down like-minded people who share your passions.

So try out these eight ways to connect with new friends on your wavelength. And let’s face it, you can never have too many…

1. Get social

Not just for catching up with the friends you already have, social media can help you uncover new buddies with the same interests as you. Different platforms work better in different ways – Facebook is perfect for finding events in your local area, Instagram can help you connect to people with similar niche interests (across fashion, fitness or art) while Twitter is ideal for striking up discussions with people who share your opinions.

2. Join a group (or start one)

Meetup is a brilliant resource used all over the world to connect people by their common interests. You can find everything in your area from yoga classes, singles walking groups, book clubs, or social evenings for friendly get-togethers. It’s invaluable if you’ve moved somewhere new and don’t know anyone.

3. Try friend dating

Not just for romantic hook-ups, there are plenty of dating-style apps that can now hook you up with a new friend. For instance, Friender lets you connect with people nearby who share the same interests as you. Some dating apps are even branching out to friendships too – like Bumble bff (Bumble for friends). Just swipe through until you find someone who you have something in common with, see if you match and set up a friend date. Easy.

4. Let’s eat

If you consider yourself a foodie, joining a local supper club is a great way to meet new people while enjoying incredible new dishes. To find one near you, Eatwith is a good place to start. It doesn’t matter if you’re a solo diner or bringing your other half, you’re sure to get stuck into some great conversation with fellow food-lovers.

5. Volunteer

Find charity work that appeals to you and make a difference while making new friends. Your favourite charity will most likely have a section on their website explaining how you can get involved, or look for databases such as VSO and WorkingAbroad to find volunteering opportunities around the world.

6. Get fit

Don’t try just one fitness class, try lots and see who you meet along the way. An easy way to become a gym butterfly is through groups like ClassPass which lets you try a variety of different fitness classes at lots of different studios for one monthly membership fee.

7. Team up

If you’re less of a gym bunny and more of a sports fanatic, joining a local team could be for you. Organisers like GO Mammoth hold regular social leagues in multiple sports for all ages. You can pick your ability level – so even if you’re a total newbie, everyone else will be in the same boat. And there’s nothing quite like the bond of a team to spark new friendships.

8. Find fellow dog walkers

Are you a dog owner or just wish you were? Borrowmydoggy.com matches dog owners with dog lovers in their area. So if you can’t have a dog but like the idea of walking one once a week, and helping someone out along the way, this is a great ‘dog borrowing’ resource. Plus, you might be surprised by how many fellow dog walkers chat to you when you’re out!

Have you made new friends online? Share what you bonded over in the comments below!