Navigating Friendships Abroad: Florence, Italy
Margaret, Fall 2023, Florence
November 29, 2023

Mercato Di Santo Spirito

Embarking on a journey abroad can be an exciting adventure, but it can also come with the challenge of building new friendships in an unfamiliar environment. Making friends while abroad is a crucial aspect of creating a fulfilling and enriching experience. Here are some practical tips and strategies to help you forge meaningful connections and build a supportive social network in a new international setting.

Being open to new cultures, local customs, traditions, and social norms can help you to make new friends within the community. By attending local events, festivals, or gatherings can be a great way to connect with the culture. For an authentic experience, explore local markets like Mercato di Santo Spirito, Mercato di Sant’Ambrogio, or Mercato del Porcellino, where artisans and locals showcase handmade items and traditional goods, providing an opportunity to engage in authentic conversations.

SAI day trip to Perugia

Consider tapping into the wealth of opportunities offered by your program, such as SAI. From pizza-making extravaganzas to chocolate factory tours, these wonderfully curated events not only allow you to explore the beauty of Florence and its countryside but also provide a relaxed setting to connect with individuals closer in age, fostering friendships in a fun and dynamic environment.
In this digital age, leverage the power of social media platforms to extend your reach and connect with others in your area. Explore Facebook groups and community websites, which serve as virtual hubs for events and gatherings, providing an informal yet effective platform to meet new people and expand your social circle.

Making friends while abroad is an art that requires a blend of openness, initiative, and cultural sensitivity. Actively embracing local customs, seizing opportunities, and participating in community events are the stepping stones to constructing a robust support network that enhances your international experience.

Written by: Margaret, Fall 2023 Florence student from Miami University

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