How To Make Friends While Travelling Australia

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Whether you’re an introverted solo traveller or an outgoing backpacker, or perhaps a bit of both, it can be nerve-wracking coming to a foreign country in the hopes of making new friends. But rest assured, as you traipse the golden coastline and dive into flourishing reefs, you’re bound to make some new mates on the way. Right from the backpacker's bible and our team’s own travels, leave Australia with incredible memories and friends to last a lifetime with these handy tips (that aren’t just liquid courage!).

Top 5 ways to make friends in Australia (even if you’re an introvert)

Stay in hostels

Put yourself in and amongst the action at a hostel or backpacker lodging. Wherever you are in Australia, this is where you will mostly find other young and fun travellers. Whether you have something in common with a roomie, meet someone at the downstairs bar or head out on a hostel pub crawl, make an effort to engage with those around you. An easy place to start is a conversation about where they’ve been or are going in Australia! And don’t be afraid to ask to tag along or join in… even if it takes a bit of gumption. We recommend cooking your own meals in hostels, not only is it a great way to save money, but you’ll also probably meet some fellow travellers in the communal kitchen! Why not share your food and pull up a chair for a new mate?

Check out our handy hostel hacks to ensure a good time while you save money on accommodation!

Two people in a dorm room on the East Coast hostel beds

Head out on a tour

Whitsundays, K’gari (Fraser Island), Cairns and everywhere in between are brimming with backpacker tours that will dazzle you with natural wonders and hidden local gems. You are also bound to meet other young travellers on their sightseeing journey! Particularly great if you’re a solo backpacker on an overnight camping or sailing tour, it’s super easy to strike up conversations and gravitate towards your kind of people. Tours are also an awesome setting to ask for travel recommendations and spots to add to your bucket list while you’re down under! To see the most incredible marvels of Australia, combine your tours, transport and accommodation with a value itinerary package.

Three people on a tour smiling with snorkels and goggles on

Ask good questions

When you’re making new friends during your travels, meeting so many new people can blend together if you’re not having meaningful interactions. Strive to ask good questions, to spark conversations about things you’re actually interested in. Travel, bucket lists, nature, music, science, politics, film, existentialism… whatever! Swap the surface-level questions for interesting ones; everyone will be better off for it! And when you part ways, don’t forget to grab your new friends’ socials to keep up with their totally Insta-worthy travel shots.

Two people playing pool in the hostel common room

Join backpacker Facebook & online groups

Millions of young travellers come to Australia every year; all that’s really left to do is find them. Make use of the many online and Facebook groups created to connect backpackers from all over the world during their Australian journey. On these forums and groups, you can find questions, advice, job opportunities for working holidaymakers, asks for road trip buddies and calls for friends! Whether you’re messaging for good travel tips, organising to hang out in a city like Sydney or Melbourne, or putting together a group of new mates for a camping trip, make friends in Australia like a true millennial - on the internet!

Three women at Kuranda station taking a selfie

Choose a guided itinerary 

Probably one of the easiest ways to get to know other backpackers in Australia is to choose a guided itinerary. A guided itinerary, or guided group tour, is a set tour package, in which you and your group explore the East Coast in a coach. You’re with the same bunch of 18 - 35-year-olds during the whole experience, meaning there’s plenty of time and long bus trips to get to know your new mates. Not to mention, your fun and passionate local travel guide is bound to set the scene while showing you the best beaches, rainforests and cities of the East Coast. Attracting avid travellers from all over the world, meet young and interesting people and see the wonders of Australia seamlessly with a guided itinerary!

A group of people by the pool

Check out our epic travel guide to get you inspired for your next backpacker adventure to Australia! 

Or, chat with one of our local travel experts to design your perfect trip to tropical paradise down under!

East Coast Tours acknowledges all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Traditional Owners of Country and recognises their continuing connection to land, sea, culture and community. We pay our respects to Elders past and present and extend that respect to all First Nations peoples.

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