How To Make Friends When You Move to a New City

{Me and my best friend from college at her wedding last summer}

As most of you know I was born and raised in Washington state, just north of Seattle. I’ve always loved the Pacific Northwest, rainy days and all! While many of my high school friends were applying to out of state colleges, I only applied to the University of Washington. It’s where my grandpa went, where my parents both went and where I always knew I wanted to go. I didn’t feel pressure from my family to go there; I just genuinely loved the school and wanted to stay in Seattle. I joined a sorority and made amazing friends and memories. Even after graduation I never saw myself living anywhere else…until I met my husband. He’s a pilot in the Air Force and was stationed at McChord Air Force Base when we met. When the time came for his next assignment it was an easy decision for me to pack up and move with him to Las Vegas. I knew I would miss my family, but I quickly learned that the thing I missed most was my group of girlfriends. I missed going to football games with them, having game nights and being there to celebrate milestones in life. We’re at the age where there are a lot of engagements, weddings and babies and I hate that I’m not there to share those special moments. The FOMO struggle is real!

However, moving away from home has been a great experience for me. It has forced me out of my comfort zone and I’ve learned a lot about myself along the way. I made some great friends through work, blogging and Air Force spouse events while we lived in Las Vegas, so I wasn’t excited to leave that environment to start fresh in Destin, FL. Having lived here for almost six months now, I’ve met quite a few girls through mutual friends and networking events. It’s hard to create the same bond as my college friends since we lived in close quarters for 4 years and experienced a lot together, but I’ve enjoyed meeting more people who have similar interests. Since I’ve moved a couple times now I thought I’d share my tips for making friends when you’re in a new city. If you’re in a similar situation, I hope you find these helpful :)


  1. Attend networking events. I have attended a couple Young Professionals events put on by our chamber of commerce and met a lot of great people! It is nice to chat with others who work in the community and also want to make connections. I’ll be honest, I don’t look forward to these events since I’m pretty introverted, but I’m always glad I went afterwards. If you know someone who might also be interested, ask if they want to go with you! That way you already have someone to talk to and don’t have to stand by yourself feeling awkward at first. My friend Christina from Little Mrs. Particular and I went to an event together recently and I felt much more comfortable having a sidekick.
  2. Get involved in community activities. If you want to make friends who have similar interests as you (which, duh, don’t we all?), get involved in those activities! Go to a yoga class, wine tasting or painting class, whatever it is you enjoy doing in your spare time! You could also volunteer with a local organization. I recently volunteered at a local non-profit called Food for Thought, where we packed backpacks with healthy food for students who are dependent on free school meals. It was nice to help the community and meet other people my age.
  3. Meet friends of friends. We were lucky to know another Air Force couple who already lived in Destin, so that made this move a little easier. We stayed with them for a few weeks before we could move into our house, so they showed us around and introduced us to their friends. She invited me to join her book club where I met even more women my age.
  4. Don’t be afraid to introduce yourself to others via social media. With social media it’s easy to feel like you “know” someone even if you’ve never met them in person. I reached out to several Vegas bloggers that I followed when we moved there and sent a message like “Hi, my name is Jamie and I recently moved to the area. I wanted to introduce myself because I love your blog and would love to meet up for coffee sometime!” Obviously it was a little more personal/well written than that, but you get my point ;) Most people are very welcoming! I’ve connected with a few bloggers here, like Molly from Destin Duchess and Marilu from Hello Marilu. We instantly had a lot in common being bloggers and living in the same area. Blogging has been the easiest way for me to make friends when we move.
  5. Push yourself outside of your comfort zone. I am 100% an introverted person, although I am pretty good at putting on an extroverted face when I need to. Sitting on my couch reading a good book sounds MUCH better than socializing with a big group of strangers. However, to make friends you have to put yourself in uncomfortable situations. Once you start meeting people and forming those connections you’ll be glad you did! And then those situations won’t feel like so much “work.”

I hope you found these tips helpful! Do you have in advice about how to make friends in a new city? Let me know in the comments!