Making friends while travelling and working remotely

Don’t you feel alone when working alone? This might be questions that come the most.

I’ve been working remotely at Buffer for 5 years now. I think I’d qualify myself as an “introvert”. I like spending time by myself. I’m actually doing it every time I’m going back to my parent’s place where not much happen , and without stepping much outside or seeing anyone else except my parent. However, there is sometimes that feeling of loneliness strikes all of sudden and when you’ll maybe want to meet.

I’m writting this from Bangkok where I arrived less than a day ago. Few minutes earlier, I shared a table for the breakfast at a hostel. Just said hi to that person in front of me, and asked how long he was staying. Someone else came along. It was his dad that came to visit him for few days (???). They told me they prefer staying at this hostel for some reasons I’ve forgot. His dad mentionned he was investing his retirement in 20 apartments he managed and enjoying the returns now. We exchanged Facebook contacts then they left.

I believe I’m an introvert but I like social interractions. Meeting new people made me more open, and I’m always intrigued by person I shouldn’t usually meet in a “usual” context. I’m not great at making new friends, but I believe there are some people around the corner with who you can “click” and where being friends is easier.

and I believe there is no secret sauce to make friends, but guidelines . it’s actually hard for me to. I’m still trying to figure out why sometimes when talking to new people the connection doesn’t happen. However, I believe after few interrractions on multiple days, it usually works better.

🏩 Stay at Hostels

I’m not a big fans of Hotels. Obviously I won’t say no to a free 4 or 5 stars hotel ;) but I believe you’re missing out so much when staying in a Hotel or an Airbnb.

It can also save you money.

When I say hostel, most of the people watch me with big eye, and see dirty, . You’ll be surprised how good they are in Asia. There is also different range , I usually opt for the medium or higher end ones.

☕️ Work from coffee shops

I always use the same questions. If I see somewone having. Sometimes they have some Excel spreadsheet open, or writting on wordpress. I saw you doing some fancy things on “whatever app the screen”, how long have you been doing it? If he’s typing some code, it’s usually : I saw you using “X”, how do you like it?

One of the Buffer’s Perk I’m grateful for. I was yesterday in Chiang Mai. Booked a Hotel room in the old city for 2 weeks, then moved a week in Ninman area.

👫 Online remote work communities: Nomadlist and Remotive

I’ve met Pieter from NomadList 2 years ago in Taipei. Randomly met and saw him again in Chiang Mai. Change the dynamic on how people. Discovered also the Indie Hacker community that are. It’s how I’ve also met Danielle @ Leave Me Alone. You’d also be surprised on how much when hanging out together people doesn’t really talk about Tech/Dev what is amazing. Contrarly to the Bay Area where this topic come within 2 minutes conversations

There is also a great alternative by Rodolphe you can check it out.

🕰 Stay at least a month in a city

I’m not a big fan of short stays. It’s often stressful, you try to do as much as you can in few days, you don’t really have time to “feel” the city and rest.

It’s hard to make real connection on a first . Some can do it (I’m still trying to learn the secret of it) but I can’t. If there is any “chemistry” on the first interraction, I usually ask for the contact (FB/Twitter/IG/WhatsApp …) and tell them we should hangout / work / do any kind of activity again together few days later. This is often where you know if you can keep, and meet again down the line anywhere else in the world.

👍 Saying yes

Had the chance to meet some people , Levels was there, had a really great. In a drinking context, it also feel easier to . I believe alcohol remove some kind of barrier, or make people more receiptive for some reasons. It’s also easier to be more interractive / expressive when you’re a bit tipsy.

👍 Sharing on social media

I’m not the a type of person sharing a lot on Facebook or Instagram. , and used to not do it. But I’ve figured out that posting 1 or 2 things on Instagram / Facebook Stories, . This is an opportunity to see them again and not really force anything. If they’re reaching out, I’d just say yes. If they’re not, probably the connections wasn’t strong, I won’t foce anything and that’s totally fine!

📚 Read books about social interractions

As an introvert, it sometimes hard for me to make sense. as I said before, . It can feel a bit “not natural” . I’ve read How To Make Friends And Influence People, a book that actually changed how I interract with people.

Diversity / advantages

If you hangout in co-working space . I believe the type of people. They are of course really interesting, but I believe most of them will be in tech, entrepreneurs having

This can sound silly, but I also like eating with someone else. The main reason? Because you can order more food . I mostly stay in Asia where it’s common to order dishes and share them all (I believe this is how it should be in Europe/US too 😁).

I’d prefer hanging out 100x times not hanging out with someone , than someone. Ob

This post isn

Over to you

How do you make friends when working remotely? Any tips? Any book recommendations?