Finding and losing friends through travels
Traveling connects you with many people, while sometimes it leads to a disconnection with some other people you already have in your life.
On my travels, I meet many people and I love that - it is one of the main reasons I love to travel. Some of these encounters even turn into friendships for a lifetime. But to make new friends while traveling, you have to have an open mind.
If you tend to be one of those travelers who have every second of your travels already organized before even starting the trip, you will probably not have the time to meet anyone, unless they are on the same trip like you.
But if you are like me, only planning the most crucial steps along the way (like how to get there and back and maybe some ideas of what to see and where to go), a whole new world awaits you. You will wander around, talk to locals, talk to strangers, taking in the moments that are there and many opportunities will open up.
If it weren't for being open minded, my friend and I would have never went to that secluded beach in Zakynthos only locals knew about. Or I would not have been invited to go for lunch with some street musicians in Barcelona I was listening to, or have a spontaneous private party thrown by some barkeepers for my 20th birthday. And for sure, I would not have met this Russian girl from Amsterdam in Havanna who turned out to be one of my closest friends with many more travels together throughout the years (and many more to come).
Yes, sure, not everybody has the ability to be as liberal with things like that as me, some people are more reserved or just don't like or need to meet new people - and that is perfectly fine as well. But if you really want to get in touch with new people along your travels, here are some tips:
If you travel often and independently, you might arrive at a point where you also lose some friends along the way. It might be during your trip - because you don't agree on the hotel or the next stop. It might be long after the holiday, because things come up that were not ok for your friends but they never told you until then. Or it might be that you just simply grow apart during the holiday or after, because the travels changed your world view - you realize that you are not on the same page with your friend anymore. I "lost" one of my best friends who travelled with me many times on a holiday. We are still friends, but far from being that close as before. And up until today, I don't know the entire reason. Was it me, was it the destination that was maybe not what she was expecting or was it because she was freshly in love and rather wanted to be back home with him? I have struggled long with this, but at some point you just have to accept it and move on and focus on your own life.
Here maybe a few tips to avoid losing friends for the most simple reasons:
And most of all: never allow any of these points to keep you from traveling.
What are your experiences? Do you have more or different tips?
I am a swiss photographer (www.fmphotography.ch),
a travel, wildlife, volunteer and outdoors addict who cares about zero waste, the environment and simply our planet.