Facebook: Travelers to Brazil during World Cup saw 15% gain in international friendship


“Hey, can I add you on Facebook?”

It seems those words were spoken quite a bit during the World Cup. Facebook’s Data Science team studied check-ins and international friend requests in Brazil, finding that travelers to Brazil saw a 15 percent rise during the tournament in friend connections from another country. On average, international visitors to Brazil during the World Cup made 2 friends — one from the host country and one from another country.

Facebook blogged about the check-in and friend connection data they collected throughout the World Cup:

As international visitors spent time in Brazil and attended the World Cup matches, they met and socialized with other passionate soccer fans from around the world. We were curious to see if the fans were making friends with people they wouldn’t ordinarily meet at home, so we looked at new friendships between people who checked into Brazil that spanned across countries.

We can see a steady increase the probability that a new Facebook friend is from a different country among World Cup visitors.  Travelers to Brazil begin June with a relatively high 10% probability of a new friend living in a different country but it increases to about 15% during the tournament.

Facebook also put together a fascinating map showing the friend connections made in Brazil during the World Cup. (Click to enlarge.)


People who visited from these countries formed the most new friendships with Brazilians during the World Cup:

  1. United States
  2. Australia
  3. Argentina
  4. Mexico
  5. UK

People who visited from these countries formed the most new friendships with Americans during the World Cup:

  1. UK
  2. Australia
  3. Mexico
  4. Colombia
  5. Canada

Friendships between people in these country pairs were the most common among non-Brazilian and non-Americans:

  1. UK and Australia
  2. Mexico and Colombia
  3. Columbia and Chile
  4. Australia and Canada
  5. UK and Canada

Here’s a look at the top World Cup stadiums, in terms of check-ins:

  1. Maracanã, Rio de Janeiro
  2. Estádio Nacional Mané Garrincha, Brasília
  3. Arena de São Paulo, São Paulo
  4. Estádio Castelão, Fortaleza
  5. Estádio Mineirão, Belo Horizonte

Which games were the most checked-into?

  1. Germany vs Argentina (final match) – July 13, Maracanã, Rio de Janeiro
  2. Brazil vs Croatia (opening match) - June 12, Arena de São Paulo, São Paulo
  3. Chile vs Spain – June 18, Maracanã, Rio de Janeiro
  4. Colombia vs Uruguay - June 28, Maracanã, Rio de Janeiro
  5. Brazil vs Cameroon - June 23, Estádio Nacional Mané Garrincha, Brasília

According to Facebook, Brazilians checked into World Cup stadiums the most, followed by visitors from the United States, Mexico, Colombia and Argentina.

Top image courtesy of ANDRE DURAO / Shutterstock.com.

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