We’ve all been there, maybe you’re a fresh enthusiast stoked on your new automotive passion, or maybe you’re a seasoned car nut in a new town trying to get plugged into the scene. You can always find other car guys by leaving notes on their cars, or by hopping on your local Facebook groups, but if you really want to just cut to the chase and see what the car scene is like you’ve only got one option, car meets!
Let me clarify some terms – when I say car meet we’re talking about the traditional format: a bunch of guys and girls, gathered in the parking lot with their cars – just talking about them. This is also known as cars and coffee, parking garage meets, and weekly car get-togethers. Car meets can also take the form of track days, or drift events. These are great ways to meet fellow enthusiasts, and often even a great way to see people for who they truly are.
I’m going to make it my goal to prep you for success at your next car meet, so let’s start with a few steps.
Step 1: Survey The Landscape
As a butcher once told me – “not all meats are created equal”. That’s certainly true here, odds are that more than one individual in your area has organized a car meet of some kind, and that gives you options.
Some meets might be geared more towards muscle cars, while some are geared towards lifted trucks do your research and use discretion.
Step 2: Prepare Your Car
As a child your mother may have told you that it’s what’s on the inside that counts, but she wasn’t talking about forged internals. Regardless of what you drive, give your car every chance it can to make a good first impression. This means washing, detailing, and making it look nice!
Step 3: Prepare Yourself
This isn’t speed dating and you don’t have to dress up, but just like any other social gathering you’re going to have to talk to people. Remember why you decided to come to the meet in the first place, to meet like-minded enthusiasts. Unless you’re the guy with the dopest car people probably aren’t going to making a beeline to shake your hand. Car enthusiasts aren’t always the most talkative or inviting, so we’re very often not the best at meeting new people.
You may have to be the one to walk up to somebody and start talking but typically people are very friendly and want to talk to you.
Overall it really is just common sense. Prepare your car, be friendly, and DO NOT try to show off. If you follow these steps you’re guaranteed to have a great time!