As online friendship has proliferated, there have been more and more people looking to the internet to meet new people. This is something many people do, and nowadays, it’s just as likely to have an online friend group as it is to have an in-person friend group. However, what do you do when you want to take that online friendship into the real world? Here’s how you can safely meet your internet friends IRL:
1. Make Sure You Really Know Your Online Friend
If you’re hoping to meet up with an online friend, you want to make sure you really know this person. Try to shy away from meeting someone if you’ve only known them for a few weeks; meeting up with internet friends that you’ve known for quite a long time is more likely to work out well.
Plus, this can actually help you avoid issues with safety, as you’re more likely to know whether someone is trustworthy if you’ve known them for months or even years. It’s true that even friends can cause harm to other friends, but if someone’s sole goal is to physically prey on someone they met online, they’re unlikely to cultivate a friendship with them over multiple months.
2. Meet Up in a Safe Place
When you do meet up with someone from the internet, it’s always a better idea to meet up with them in public before you meet up with them in private. Anywhere from the park to a local restaurant to a museum might be a great place to meet up with someone you’ve never met in person before.
Meeting in a public place can help everyone feel a little more comfortable with each other and it can reduce any security risks. Even if you’re planning to go somewhere private at some point, going to a public space first can break the ice.
3. Meet Up as a Group If Possible
Another way to make sure everyone is a little safer is to meet up as a group if at all possible. Meeting up one on one with someone can be extremely fun, and it’s not inherently unsafe, but meeting up with three, four, five, or even more people at once can make the process even more fun and a lot safer all at once.
If you’re hoping to meet up with your online friends, consider trying to organize this meetup with multiple friends at once for an even more exciting experience. Not only can it be more fun to meet up as a group rather than just with a single person, but it can also open up plenty of exciting opportunities that might not be available with one-on-one meetups.
4. Have Something Ready To Do
Having a plan for your meetup will make it much easier for you to meet up safely and have a good time while doing it. Whether that plan is simply to have a picnic in the park or it’s more complicated and has you driving to multiple locations, a plan will make sure you have something already prepared for your meetup.
This can help with the awkwardness that often occurs when meeting up with someone for the first time. Even if you’re extremely good friends with the other person, there’s going to be an element of awkwardness to the first in-person meetup. A plan can help you avoid much of that awkwardness.
5. Look Into Your Friend Carefully Before Meeting Up
If you want to be as safe as possible, one of the things you can do is delve deep into your friend’s background before you meet up with them in person. A great way to do this is to use PeopleFinders to run a reverse phone search even before you start making plans to meet up.
All you have to do is request your friend’s phone number, which you might already have if you regularly text them. Then plug that number into the PeopleFinders reverse phone lookup. You’ll find plenty of information about the person, including their name, details, general location, address and even public records like criminal history. That way, you can get the information you need before actually meeting up.
The process of meeting up with online friends is exciting and definitely enjoyable. There are many ways you might want to meet up with online friends, but one thing is always the same: You need to make sure you do it in a safe way. With the help of PeopleFinders, you can do just that.
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