Here are 7 simple ways to make friends at the bar without breaking a sweat.
Whether you’ve just moved to a new city or you’re simply looking to broaden your current social circle, the bar is a great place to meet new people. Nervous? With these tips, the BOTY, and a little liquid courage, you’ll be making new friends in no time.
1. Check your body language
First things first, you need to show that you’re open to talking to someone. Ever notice the guy hunched over his drink, glued to his cell phone, completely closed off from the entire bar? Don’t be that guy. You won’t make any friends if you’re putting off “don’t bother” vibes. Instead, do your best to sit in a way that makes you more approachable. Don’t cross your arms, and try to sit in the position that faces slightly outwards towards the rest of the bar – and don’t forget to smile from time to time.
We’re not saying you should rent some expensive spy equipment, but listening to conversations that are happening nearby can create an opportunity for some social interaction. Hear someone talking about a topic you’re also interested in? Have something to add to a conversation that’s happening a table over? Go ahead and jump in! Just remember that the bar attracts all types of people, so be sure to read the room a little. It’s best not to interrupt a heated argument or come between a couple on a date.
3. Use a social app
Welcome to 2017, bar goer. While we don’t encourage never looking up from your phone, we do encourage using it for a purpose. Currently, there are dating apps (like Happn and Match) that let you message other people around you, but they focus on the romantic connection. That’s why people are turning to the BOTY. It lets you see other people that have checked into the bar you’re at, and message them. Of course, you can also send a flirty message if you happen to see someone attractive. The choice is yours – just download and start meeting the people around you.
4. Get the bartender on your side
Bartenders are the original confidants. There’s no shame in letting your bartender know that you’re there to mingle – chances are they’ll be more than happy to make a casual intro happen.
Best way to go about it? Be a cool customer. Start a conversation and get to know your bartender a bit, once you’re no longer a stranger they’ll have a better sense of who you are, and who to introduce you to.
5. Join a game
A lot of bars come equipped with entertainment; pool tables, dart boards, or even trivia – all are great ways to interact with other people at the pub. Ask to join a game or group up with a trivia team – they’re great ice breakers. And now there are even new ways to make a connection. The BOTY has mobile trivia, so you can connect with other players that are checked in at the same bar. Start with the app, and then get up and say hi in person – it’s a win win.
6. Start a conversation.
When tips one through five aren’t options, sometimes you have to bite the bullet and just say hi. This can be scary, but once you do it you’ll likely realize it’s not as big a deal as you thought. Comment on the game, compliment someone’s cool t-shirt, or ask where to get the best pizza in town. So long as you steer clear of anything that might be offensive, you can’t really go wrong here. Take a sip of your drink and go for it!
7. Follow through.
Once you’ve started something, don’t cop out. Maintain a level of interest and do your best to contribute to the conversation and ask questions – basically, be present. If you like the person or people you meet and you’re not already connected on the BOTY, why not suggest becoming friends on a social media channel you both use? Exchanging info means you won’t have to wait to bump into them again at random, you can actually plan to meet up.