Someone I know who is fairly sociable, prefers unbusy (i.e no crowds) environments when they're outside.

They prefer to go, say shopping, in the late hours in order to avoid other shoppers. Or they prefer commuting in empty streets. And they act on their preference and do the above.

Is there a word/phrase to describe such a person?

  • A man that irrationally fears the crowd is "ochlophobic". But, it is not really applicable if unbusy environments are a simple preference.
    – Graffito
    Sep 2, 2015 at 16:13

5 Answers 5


Sociable introvert? Sociable loner? Introverted sociable human being?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loner Loner seems to be pretty close. Loner does not mean you hate others or cannot be sociable. It just means you like or prefer spending time alone avoiding other people or crowds that annoy you, unless you have no other chance or you particularily like the other person(s) and like to spend time with them.


In an extreme sense the person is demophobic. Which is a fear of crowds, and usually these people are introverted. This varies from what you described to a person that can barely function.


While not a common term, consider thoreauvian

relating to or like or in the manner of Henry David Thoreau

Thoreau was a 19th century American author, poet, philosopher, abolitionist, and naturalist, best known for his book Walden, a reflection upon simple living in natural surroundings.

While appreciating the serenity of Walden Pond, Thoreau was not a wallflower, taking up causes loudly when inspired, including resistance to taxes, slavery, and overbearing government.


Perhaps a phrase, tranquility seeker. It in no way denies sociability, but indicates an avoidence of hubbub. Hey, maybe hubbub avoider? Or turmoil rejecter?

  • I've never heard this term used to describe people, just their living styles, so I just wanted to get some clarification: if a person is considered thoreauvian, do they necessarily have to be simple? When you talk about thoreauvian living styles, the word is almost always used like the word "simple" or "natural", but do you think that is different when we apply it to people?
    – Ice-9
    Mar 5, 2014 at 14:27
  • @Ice-9 To be honest, I have no exposure to actual use for a person. It just leapt to mind when I saw the question, and I have heard it applied to settings.
    – bib
    Mar 5, 2014 at 15:02

Wouldn't we all prefer commuting on empty streets and shopping in empty stores?

I'd call that person "practical" and separate that behavior from their social tendencies since neither commuting nor shopping are particularly social occasions (except malling which can be very social, but I'm not sure that is what is implied here).

  • 1
    I don't know if we all "prefer", but if everyone acted on their preference, there wouldn't be any time of day where shops were empty.
    – Mansour
    Mar 8, 2014 at 13:03

An expression often used for travellers is peace and quiet seeker.

Peace and quiet definition: Tranquillity and freedom from disturbance. This phrase's redundancy (quiet here does not mean “lack of sound” but “peacefulness”) gives added emphasis. It often is used in wishes for this condition, as in All I want is a little peace and quiet.


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