How to make new friends in Lisbon

How to develop a social network
Updated 2023-11-12 08:39

It isn't easy to move to another country, be it alone or as a couple. Although no one makes such a life-changing decision light-heartedly, it can be challenging to meet different people and make friends when you are in a new city without mastering the language. Luckily, we have a few tips to get you out and about in Lisbon and interacting with natives and other expats in no time.

Get a houseshare in Lisbon

Yes, living on your own (or with a partner) is great. But as an expat flying around the world, the easiest way to meet new people is by living with them! There are plenty of opportunities to rent a room around Lisbon, and it is a particularly good way of getting social as you also get used to a new city.

Plus, it will help you save some much-needed money, as rent prices in Lisbon are through the roof!

Check social media in Lisbon

There are several Facebook groups that aim to connect and help expats in their new hometown. Lean In Women Lisbon International is one of them, a space where female expats can post their doubts and support each other. Plus, digital nomads based in the Portuguese capital can benefit from coworking spaces and activities (in English), as advertised on another Facebook group called Expats in Lisbon (or, alternatively, Lisbon Digital Nomads & Expats). There's even a specific group for runners! Technology is here to connect people, and you should definitely take advantage of that.

Attend events in Lisbon

There's a lot going on under Lisbon's quiet surface. Like, a lot! Get ready to mingle and start attending one of the many events around the city. For those interested in food, Culinary Backstreets organizes food and wine-related excursions and cooking classes around town. Are you a musician? Join one of the open mics. A writer? There are book clubs and writing groups available, etc. The options are endless, and if you don't know where to start, check out websites like Eventbrite and MeetUp: you will surely find something catering to your interests and meet like-minded people with whom you already have something in common.

Take a class in Lisbon

Think about your oldest friends. How did you meet them? Chances are it was at school or university, right? Why don't you recreate that experience as an expat as well? Maybe you want to learn Portuguese. Perhaps you want to explore EatWith to learn how to cook traditional dishes or even get your hands dirty with ceramics at (Together) by Anna Westerlund. The options are nearly endless, and it's not only an excellent way to be social, but you'll also be learning a new skill as well.

Talk to your coworkers in Lisbon

Expats working in an office or coworking space may also get acquainted with their coworkers. Enjoy a coffee break together, share lunch or even go for a Friday night imperial (pint) at the end of a long week. But be careful! Portuguese natives are very traditional and can get the wrong impression of an expat's friendliness.

What are you waiting for to get social? Get yourself out there, and maybe you will meet friends who will last you a lifetime.

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