Moving to a new neighbourhood always comes with its challenges and may be daunting, especially as an expat in a dynamic city like Dubai with so many different cultures and conventions. Therefore, Hayi has a few tips on how to ease into your new community and make friends out of those who live closest to you.
Don’t say no! You want to embrace fellow neighbours who are trying to connect with you and invite you to gatherings, events or activities. Especially in the beginning you want to avoid making the impression of being a nay-sayer, accept any friendly invitations that come your way. Don’t be shy, even if your neighbour is inviting you to join a cultural event or celebration that is foreign to you, embrace it and use this an opportunity to get to know the culture of your fellow community members. That’s one of the beauties of living in Dubai!
Join a Class or Hobby group
One of the best ways of getting to know people in your neighbourhood with the same interests is to join a hobby group or class. There are so many groups and classes that regularly meet up in Dubai ranging from the most extreme sports like skydiving and surfing to more casual ones like yoga or chess. Some are even free! Go ahead and make a post on the Hayi app and ask around, I’m sure there are neighbours with plenty of recommendations!
Use technology to connect online and meet up offline. These days there are as many options as never before, we are the most connected generation that has ever been. Especially using an application like Hayi that is specifically tailored towards connecting neighbours makes diving into your local community from day one easier than ever before.
Your dog is your superpower!
There is no surer way to get to meet a fellow neighbour than to go for a walk with your beloved dog in your neighbourhood. Your dog will literally break the ice for you! And on top of that you’ll immediately have something in common to talk about to with the fellow dog walker you meet on the way.
Take the initiative
Be the friendly neighbour who reaches out and takes the initiative. It goes as far as hosting a small tea get together to just simply a friendly “hello” on your way to taking out the trash, people remember kindness!
Make use of friends of friends
Everyone has their friend groups, and everyone likes to make new introductions. A quick way of expanding your network is through meeting your friends of friends, and before you know it you will have a whole network of friends in Dubai!
Last but not least, there are always community initiatives in your neighbourhood. Be it simply by providing the hot dogs at the next primary school football tournament or through committing your time to a larger initiative to help develop the local community. Ask around or post in Hayi to find your local initiatives, people love a good samaritan!