Meeting fascinating people is one of the best things about traveling, but it takes time to develop a relationship — and that’s something you might not have a lot of if you’re on the road. The good thing about icebreakers is they can help you build rapport with strangers faster.
The best questions are original, or at least unusual. Greeting someone new with “how long have you been here” and “where next” is okay, but these openers can lead to some pretty repetitive conversation patterns because people use them all the time. It also leads the other person down an all-too-familiar route. Instead of using the same greetings as everyone else, take the plunge and offer a question that gives your new friend permission to open up in ways they haven’t done before. Asking something they aren’t expecting means you’ll get better thought-out answers, which keeps their energy level high and helps you work out if there’s chemistry.