I recently wrote a post about adjusting to life in a foreign country, based on my experience living in Colombia. One of the topics I covered was – how can men make friends in foreign lands?
I sort of glossed over it then, because as of that writing I’d made zero friends in Medellín!
Well, as an introverted guy, making new buddies isn’t always easy for me. And that’s doubly true as a foreigner, since language and cultural barriers can be daunting.
But the funny thing is?
After I published that post, I actually started making male friends in Colombia. And having those bros around definitely made things different.
So in today’s post, I’ll discuss the advantages of making friends in a foreign land.
And then, I’ll go over how introverted men can make male friends in a foreign country.
Advantages Of Foreign Male Friends
So, what are some advantages of making male friends in a foreign country?
Here are a few…
Traveling in another country, as a foreigner, can get lonely.
You’re isolated, alone, an outsider.
But just one friend changes that. With a buddy, suddenly your social options open.
And just one friend makes it easier to…
They’ll Teach You Their Culture
Of course you can learn a lot about a country and it’s culture just by visiting.
No friends needed.
But that type of understanding is kinda shallow…
But if really want to know a new country? You’ve gotta get intimate, and immerse yourself deep into the culture.
And the best way to do that is by making friends with locals.
More Adventure, See Off-Limits Areas
As a foreigner, there are certain things that are off-limits. Certain areas you’re simply never gonna see.
But that changes when you’re friends with a local.
Suddenly, you’ll have access to places that you normally couldn’t (or shouldn’t) go.
And that will give you unique insight and perspective into the country. And it’ll exponentially increase your chances for adventure!
Colombian buddy & I busted by cops in Medellín barrio. I was clean. They found his weed, coke, $$. Took 1/2 his coke & then let us go. LOL.
— Mario Favela (@realMarioFavela) April 29, 2016
Make More New Friends
That first friend connection will likely lead to more friends.
It’s the snowball effect. More people want to be friends with you, once they know you’ve got local buddies.
Of course, you’ll meet the friends of your new friend.
But you can also use the fact that you have a friend as social proof, to build mutually exclusive social circles.
Meet More Girls
Of course, an experienced player doesn’t need any bros to get laid.
But if you want to meet girls organically?
Then local guy friends are the way to go. Because they’ll have a built-in social circle, they’ll know local girls. And if you’re a friend of theirs, then you instantly gain social proof and access you didn’t have before.
Now, you’re the cool foreign guy with local buddies, instead of that weird lone extranjero just trying to get laid.
Free Language Lessons
Having local friends is like having free language tutors.
As long as you’ve got basic skill in the language and can communicate, then you’ll find that your new friends will want to help you get better at their language.
And there’s no time limit.
So, if you hang out with a foreign buddy all day, one who doesn’t speak your language, you’ve got an all-day free language lesson.
How To Make Foreign Friends
So, what’s the best way to make foreign buddies in a strange land?
Especially if you’re an introverted guy who don’t make friend easily?
In general, it takes introverted men longer to make friends. We’re unlikely to make connections in a just a week or two.
Maybe extroverts can do that, but not us.
So, if you’re an introvert who wants to make foreign friends?
Stay put in one place for a while.
This is known as slow travel, or staying one place for 3+ months. Slow travel gives you time to make real friends, since you’ll have time to build relationships.
Learn Language Basics
It’s gonna be almost impossible to make friends if you can’t communicate.
It’s no coincidence that I didn’t have any male friends for the first half of my time in Medellín.
My Spanish was terrible!
It wasn’t until the second half, when my Spanish was tighter, that bros started asking me to hang out. And that’s just common sense. You can’t befriend someone you can’t speak with.
So, if you want foreign friends you must learn the basics of their lingo, at least enough to have a basic conversation.
I recommend Pimsleur audio courses, they really helped me get up to speed.
Find Like-Minded Men
So, where can you find bros to befriend? In my opinion, it’s best to make friends with like-minded guys, men who like the same stuff you like. For me personally, I became good buds with guys at the park where I did my bodyweight training.
I worked out their for months. Got to know the guys who worked out there. Eventually, after a few months of showing my face (and getting respect by training hard) I started getting invites to go do stuff.
So if you have a hobby that you can do in public (like lifting weights or bodyweight training), make sure you regularly get out of the house to do it, to increase your exposure to local men.
Don’t Try Too Hard
This is a tricky part. Especially if you’re not used to making new friends.
On the one hand, you’ve gotta put some effort into making buddies, gotta put yourself out there.
But if you try too hard, you’ll seem desperate!
So put yourself in situations where guys will befriend you.
But don’t try too hard once you’re there…
Just like gaming women, you’ll strike out sometime. I met multiple dudes in Medellín that seemed like potential friends. We’d exchange info, but then nothing came of it.
If that happens to you, don’t take it personal. Realize that just like with women and sales, making male friends is a numbers game.
You’ll get rejected sometimes.
And that’s ok.
Because it allows you to move on and focus on guys who will be your friend.
Be Flexible & Say Yes
As an introvert, your natural inclination is to say no to social invites. Even if you know it’ll be good for you to go out, more than likely you’d rather stay home!
But if you wanna make buddies?
You’ve gotta step out of your comfort zone, and say yes to their invitations.
Many foreigners don’t have as much money as you.
One way to make them loyal?
So pick up the tab. Buy dinner and drinks.
Don’t get taken advantage of, of course.
But realize that by spending just a bit of money on your new friends, you’ll build tremendous goodwill.
Understand Their Customs
It helps to understand local customs, so you don’t get mad when your new bros don’t act like your buds at home.
For example, in Latin America, it’s common for people to just stop by your place. Un-invited!
In America, this is a huge faux pas!
You’d never just show up at someone’s house, and you’d be angry if your friends did that to you.
And that’s just one example. So make sure you understand local culture, and don’t get mad if they act outside your idea of ‘normal.’
So that’s it!
My comprehensive guide to making good buds in foreign lands.
It’s not an easy thing to make foreign friends, especially for quiet guys like me.
But it’s worth it.
So follow this guide, get out there, and make find some friends!
You’ll be glad you did.
Have you made friends with local bros in foreign lands? How’d you do it?