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Let me ask you this: Berlin may love you, but does anyone else?

After all: You moved to Berlin without much, stripping off money, worries, and—let’s face it—friends, on your quest to be something “more.” But sitting tight-lipped at your corner candlelit bar and Whatsapping your friends back home isn’t doing you any favors. You need to build a social group. Interaction is key.

Hobtime is a social app for those of us new-to-the-scene, offering the know-how of those of us who’ve been around the block a few times. As such, it doesn’t take as much stock in what your dead-eyed hipster flat-white brewer believes is in-vogue ATM and looks at the greater picture, painting a portrait of the spattering of colors and personalities this city brings.

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Essentially, Hobtime bridges the divide between many great already-existing apps, such as Yelp, Facebook, and Meetup—adding necessary elements to build a social-spider- web of sorts, without any restriction.

Hobtime gives you days and nights out in categories such as Games (from Motorsport to Card-games, for all you grandmas out there), Sport & Wellness, Culture & Travel, and Going Out & Dining, and each Meetup and Event is divided as such. They’re subsequently “rated” with a thumbs up, thumbs down by relevant players—and you can even save the Meetup or Event for later, when that fifth re-watch of Breaking Bad isn’t snuffing it anymore.

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(Hint: These “Events” are similar to the ones you’re often “Interested” in on Facebook, but come with a group of other Hobtimers also looking to latch onto some new friends whilst there. In that sea of a FB-million, all looking to head to Freiluftkino, you’d drown. Not so with Hobtime, which creates a personalized message board allowing you to build your own little raft.)

Much like Facebook or, say, that dying old bag, Twitter, Hobtime offers “Trending” locations and events to keep your finger on the pulse of the erratic Berlin scene. Current locations trending include Wilde Renate and Shiso Burger, that Asian burger place we’re drooling over, and each site has specific descriptions, average prices, any specific door requirements (probably even at the burger place), and the location. If you want to rustle up a few not-yet-friends into a Meetup group all your own, you can choose the location, create a Meetup, and then invite people. Those invited aren’t even forced to officially “Hobtime.” Sweet, sweet freedom.

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Perhaps best of all, Hobtime’ll chat back to you in your darkest moments with the Live Feed. Searching for pool parties? Hobtime’ll toss you a Badeschiff hint. Looking for jazz? Sure. Hobtime’ll basically slap a fedora on your head and shove your saxophone-loving self out the door. No word yet if the weeping I spun into the Live Feed will receive any answers, but with Hobtime’s know-how, I’m guessing I’ll receive a Spotify link to Enya in only a moment. It seems they always know.

The takeaway:

For a new or like-new Berliner, looking to build a social life or really dig the Berlin scene, Hobtime is a literal must-have. You can chat with like-minded loners, build your own Meetup groups, hunt for better salsa dance locations, and, essentially, create a map for the remainder of your Berlin life (or forever). Losing yourself in this, a large, frenetic city in a foreign country, can be easy. But Hobtime is something to cling to. Stay the course. There’s so much out there.

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About Author

Allison Krupp is a novelist and screenwriter, currently scouring the city for earnest conversations with other Berlin weirdos, writing about music, film, art, literature, and food. [email protected]

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