New in town and keen to meet people? Here's our tips for getting connected in the Big Durian
We know that leaving your comfort zone and old friends can be a bit unsettling. However, moving to a city as big and exciting as Jakarta can definitely be seen as a great adventure, especially with all the fun things the city has to offer. Strike up a conversation with someone at a fitness class, or maybe at one of the city’s best watering holes. After all, local or expat, Jakartans love welcoming new people. But if you’re shy, or just don’t know where to start, here are some tips for meeting people in Jakarta.
Through Social Media
Indonesia is huge on social media. Whether it’s a birthday party or an impromptu get-together, you can bet that the event will be announced on one type of forum or another. Want to make new friends at the touch of a button? Keep reading.
The Jakarta chapter of Meetup makes connecting with like-minded expats and Indonesians a breeze. Join an already established group – such as the Jakarta Fabulous Working Ladies, Golf Indonesia Meetup or Jakarta International Friends – or come up with your own. Most groups hold regular events to let members take their online friendships to a face-to-face level.
Alternatively, InterNations connects fellow expats in various locations around the globe. Check out the Jakarta chapter for upcoming events and activities.
The Living in Indonesia Expat Forum has a Noobie’s Nook section where newcomers can introduce themselves and make new friendships. The site also lists upcoming expat-centered events.
Through Expat Organizations
Open to both newcomers and those already familiar with Jakarta’s flow, the following organizations offer opportunities to mingle with both expats and locals.
Despite its name, the American Women’s Association of Indonesia welcomes women of all nationalities. Join the organization’s 200 or so members in a host of activities and social events.
When it comes to associations in the Big Durian, the ladies win on all fronts. With the motto “friendship through understanding,” the Women’s International Club connects women of all nationalities at regular events.
This one is for everybody, regardless of gender and nationality. The Australian and New Zealand Association offers weekly coffee morning get-togethers, as well as book, photography, bridge and salsa clubs. For those who enjoy breaking a sweat, yoga and tennis are also on offer.
Common interests make great basis for a friendship. What better way to get to know someone than bonding over something you feel passionate about. Here are a few suggestions for actors, singers and those eager to explore Indonesian heritage.
Learn about Indonesia’s rich cultural heritage, while you make new friends, by joining the Indonesian Heritage Society. Expats can join explorer tours of Jakarta, as well as study groups and evening lectures on topics such as Indonesian textiles and history.
Give your vocal cords a workout by joining the Jakarta International Community Choir. Not just a great way to show off your talent on stage, the 40-strong choir will ensure that your social calendar is full in no time.
Put your best face forward and let new friendships blossom by joining the Jakarta Players. The multinational theatre group, which stages regular productions, donates all its proceeds to charities that assist Indonesian families in need. Those not into acting can get involved in other aspects of theatre production such as lighting, sound or makeup.
Do you have any more suggestions on where to meet people in Jakarta? Write to us in the comment section below!
By Anita Surewicz