The rest of the world's gone digital, so why not friendship groups? As a newcomer, it's hard to know where to start. You're not looking for a romantic relationship, so a dating site
is out of the question. You aren't familiar with the city, so you have no idea where to go to meet people.
Fortunately, we've got three sites to help you meet friends online:
Meetin is a free online social group that has city listings in Canada and the U.S., as well as many other countries around the world. They promise a 'non-pickup-scene' for people looking to meet new friends. You have to register and login to see upcoming events, but there are photo albums of past events you can check out without signing up.
Some of their past activities in Vancouver have included picnics in parks around the city and a Polar Bear Swim
in the chilly waters of English Bay
. Besides the upcoming activities planned by Meetin, there's a message board where users post ads looking for friends to do things like:
Go to fitness bootcamp
Watch a Canucks game
in a pub
Go to the art gallery
Craigslist has a platonic friends section, which can be especially good for arranging last minute activities with people who share your interests. For example, people are often looking for a buddy to hit the clubs
with, or someone who wants to see a live music show that weekend. One drawback of the platonic friends section on Craigslist is that it can be sketchy once in awhile: some women complain that there are men who are really looking for a romantic relationship. Plus, it's a one-on-one connection, unlike most other online social groups in Vancouver, so always remember to stay safe and meet in a public place.
Meetup is a site that's a few years old and has grown leaps and bounds in a very short time. It has groups all over the U.S. and Canada, with 6.1 million members and 180,000 meetups every month. Anyone can start a Meetup group, and some have only a few members, while others have hundreds. Members meet (usually once a month) to talk, share ideas, or just go out and do something social. Meetup.com
is free to use, but there may be a fee for some of the activities. For example, you'll pay a cover charge if the group goes to see a live band at a bar.
A few of the top Meetup groups in Vancouver are:
Vancouver Tennis Club
Vancouver Live Music Fans
But the Vancouver Newcomers Group
beats those – it has nearly 300 members. People get together for planned events at bars
. Members seem to like this group, as it's rated 4.5 out of 5 stars.
It is possible to expand your social circle without having to try and befriend people one by one when you move to Vancouver. Meeting people online can bring you face-to-face with hundreds of people who share your interests and hobbies.