Making friends in Spain or in any foreign country might sound challenging. Moving to Spain may be scary, especially if you don’t know anybody yet. I’ve been there and I know it can be tricky at times. In this post, I’ll give you a few tips for making friends in Spain.
If you are in a big city like Madrid, there are a lot of people in the same situation as you are. Just think that every year there are more than 4,000 US citizens applying for the English teaching assistant program. They don’t know what their job will be like and have similar worries. However, they still want to have fun, travel and enjoy their time in Spain.
Having said that, here are a few ideas that can help you to make friends in Spain.
Use the internet
Making friends in Spain is easier if you use Facebook.
You can join several groups to find people in the same city. For example, in the teaching assistant facebook group in Madrid, you can find people suggesting group plans, storage room for your luggage, etc.
There are people looking for roommates —in case you want to find a room before you arrive in Spain. I’ve seen other auxiliares that went back to the States for a week and offered to bring some products back to Spain. So there’s a whole community out there.
If you are not part of the English teaching assistant program, don’t fret. There are plenty of expat groups full of people itching to do something.
Meet up is another interesting option to make friends in Spain.
It is easy to use, you just type the city you live in and tons of activities will come up. All you have to do is to search for an activity that interests you and you’ll start making friends in Spain
Making friends in Spain – Offline
The Internet has amazing opportunities but there are also things you can do outside of it.
Follow your interests
You can sign up for tennis lessons, Spanish courses or join your local gym. You could try art classes, sports or even pottery. Just find what you are passionate about and go for it.
Party: Spain is well known for its nightlife. A lot of people come to Spain to enjoy late nights out and traveling around Europe. People go out from 11:00 p.m. until 06:00 a.m.
In the city center, there are pub crawls almost every day.
Language exchange: nowadays, speaking English is a big thing in Spain. Almost everybody needs it for work and there are many others looking forward to improving their communication skills. You can make the most out of this situation and learn Spanish along the way. After all, learning Spanish will help you to make friends with Spaniards.
There are a few different bars that host language exchanges once a week or several times a week. You go, get a drink and talk to people. Most of the time they want to exchange 30 minutes of Spanish for 30 minutes of English.
Sometimes when the exchange is over, they go to a different bar to listen to live music or have another drink.
If you are a teaching assistant, there are a few extra things you can do to make friends in Spain.
If you are in Spain as a teaching assistant and you applied through their program there are a few orientation meetings at the beginning of the school year. Attending these meetings is a great opportunity to find people with the same interests.
There are usually a certain number of teaching assistants allocated at your school. That number might vary from 2 to 5 or even more depending on how big the school is. They’ll be your coworkers for the entire year and you’ll have quite a lot of time to spend with them because of the school schedule: lunch in the school lasts for 2 hours.
Remember that life happens outside. Making friends in Spain will be easier if you leave your apartment. Be proactive and step forward to any plan. Be persistent and do not give up!
Let me know in the comments what things worked for you.