Connecting with Others Through Travel

QRC tourism and hospitality Bay of Islands

People are the heart of Kiwi culture

New Zealanders are known for being a relaxed and social bunch, with a strong community spirit and are always ready for a friendly yarn (chat). This comradery was strengthened by the COVID-19 pandemic and through recent weather events such as Cyclone Gabrielle with communities coming together to check on each other’s well-being and offer a helping hand with community efforts like clean-ups and collecting donations.

Travellers to New Zealand have many opportunities available to them to meet locals, experience the Kiwi culture first hand and maybe make some friends along the way.

Connecting makes us better people

Travelling, whether with friends or solo, encourages us to become more adventurous and outgoing, we get out of our comfort zones, experiencing and learning new things.

When we connect with people from different cultures and backgrounds we increase our social, communication and listening skills, broaden our perspectives and become more understanding.

“Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating that all people cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die, it can introduce the idea that if we try and understand each other, we may even become friends.” — Maya Angelou

Here’s a list of ways you can meet local people while you’re travelling:

  • Join a club or sports team (most clubs encourage short-stay visitors and walk-ins!)
  • Attend a community event – these are often advertised locally via local newspapers, Facebook groups or at eventfinda.co.nz
  • Shop at small local businesses and eateries – you’ll rub shoulders with the locals 
  • Volunteer in the community – check out the volunteering opportunities on BeKiwi or Volunteering NZ
  • Just say hi – Kiwis are a friendly bunch so say hello when you buy a coffee or go for your walk and you might be surprised where the conversation goes!
  • Call in and say ‘kia ora’ at a local marae
  • Book a BeKiwi experience

Do more than
just visit

Take a look at BeKiwi’s learning experiences.

BeKiwi Experiences
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