This article was originally published at Maastricht Region: to Live.
I’m no expert on getting a social life, but a recent email got me thinking about where I’ve met people during my stay in Maastricht. If you’re looking for a way to make fun connections with other expats (and Dutch folks), try one of these options.
One of my favorite events, Pecha Kucha is a quarterly series of short, snappy lectures. Before, at half time, and after the talks, there is a great chance to mingle and chat about what you just watched.
The classroom is always a good place to meet people and there are plenty of opportunities for continuing education or workout classes in Maastricht where you can meet people with share interests. Check out your local gym for class or try Kumulus if you’re into art.
Speaking of the classroom, you probably want to learn Dutch anyway. Dutch classes are a good way to meet other new expats and maybe even get some practice in. Or at least a beer or two with your new friends. Plus Dutch will help open the door to getting to know your neighbors and coworkers better. (Yeah, I know the Dutch never stuck with me, but some of the friends I made have.)
Maastricht is full of activities if you know where to look. In print, look for Week In, Week Uit, which has weekly events and an English page in the back. Online, try the events page here, movie house websites, UitBuro (Dutch only), and Stadium Generale (Dutch & English sections). No doubt there are more, but these are a good start.
For women only, the International Women’s Club of South Limburg is a great way to meet other expats. The local branch has a nice size and good mix of ages, careers, and interests. I’ve found that a majority of the members I’ve met are long-term expats or plan on be. The Junior IWC has a drinks night once a month and sometimes partners are welcome for that.
And if you hit it off with someone, don’t forget to follow up with an invitation for coffee or a beer. That seems to be the way things are done in Maastricht.
Thank you to Giulio for his email. Write to me again if you like; my reply bounced.