Being in Catalunya for some time now, I have made a few Catalan friends. It hasn’t been easy, but it is possible. If you are interested in mingling with the natives, here are a few things that I have learned since I came to live here:
1. Speak in Spanish: Although many people speak English, you have to remember that you are in Barcelona, SPAIN. People here either speak Spanish or Catalán. Speaking in English is ok for basic communication, but if you really want to understand and connect to the Spanish people, you need to find common ground and speak their language. Just a note: Speaking Catalán will give you even more plus points and give you just that little extra something to make friends because very few people speak Catalán who are not natives to Catalunya.
2. Go to where the Spanish people hang out: That is to say that the Ramblas is great but you wont find all that many real Spanish people there. You must search out the places that the Spanish people like to go to. Some places where I have had success have been in Luz de Gas and
Razzmatazz (both ‘discotecas’). Do your research online before coming to Barcelona. Look out for the little corner bars and bakeries close to your You Stylish apartment. All these little tips help.
3. Do not over drink when out at the nightclubs. No one likes an obnoxious drunk, nor someone that you can’t have a real conversation with. And in general the night crowd of Barcelona don’t go out to get
wasted, they tend to go out to hang out with the friends that they have grown up with since infancy. Drink with class, and you are sure to be able to strike up a conversation with any Spanish person in the bar.
4. Learn about futbol: Mainly FC Barcelona, who’s slogan “Mes que un club” (more than a club) speaks for itself. I myself am a diehard fan of Barça. If you want to make Catalan friends, its probably best not to mention that you are a Real Madrid fan!
5. Be patient: Making friends is never easy. Making friends in a foreign country is always part luck, part chemistry and part personality. If you don’t make friends in the first couple of days, don’t be sad. Just keep trying and try to enjoy yourself.
You are in BARCELONA, one of the most beautiful cities, after all.
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