The economy may be struggling, but it doesn’t mean that your love life has to follow suit. Here are 50 inexpensive date ideas that will leave your date feeling like a million bucks.
- In Leonardo’s Footsteps
If you love art, try to paint something together. For instance, you can do one side of Mona Lisa’s face and torso while your date does the other. Don’t be too worried if the result is more crow than woman; the goal is to have fun, not compete with Leonardo da Vinci.
- Cheap Cook
Compete to find out who can cook the tastiest food using the least amount of money. Bring a touch of romance to your dinner table with a few candles.
- Explore Your City
How much of your city do you really know? Because a large number of people spend most of their time either working or at home, they rarely get to know the places they inhabit. Combine a tour of your neighborhood or city with a date.
- Go to a movie
Statistics show that the price of movie tickets has risen to an average of $8.16 per ticket in the United States. However, that is cheaper than most restaurant dinners, which will set you back at least $55 for meals and drinks.
Chivalry is not dead; prove it by serenading her. Remember to inform her neighbors first, as they may not be partial to loud voices in the middle of the night. Some may even be willing to help you. Get a friend to record the experience on video for posterity.
- Day at the Museum
Lovers of history should have a visit to the museum on top of their aggregated list. Use the opportunity to share experiences from your past.
- Animal Lovers
A visit to the zoo is a fun way of whiling away the day. Remember to carry snacks in case you get hungry.
- The Beach
Few places surpass the beach for romance. Carry a book, some snacks, sunscreen, hats and an iPod, and spend the day lazing. Wait for the sunset; it makes for a great end to a romantic date.
- Karaoke Night
Visit your favorite joint and impress your date with your singing prowess. Make up some romantic lines and incorporate your date’s name. No matter how bad your voice is, you will have a great time.
- Tennis Double Date
Find a couple that shares your passion and go for a double tennis date. Carry drinks and some snacks, as hungry dates tend to have short fuses.
- Game Night
Find a game you both like, and spend the evening having fun. If you do not have a console or a gaming computer, a smartphone or a tablet will do. You wouldn’t believe the amount of fun you can have trying to outdo each other’s Angry Birds’ high scores. However, don’t forget to make time to talk; that’s why you are having a date in the first place.
- Watch the Stars
If the night is warm and dry, grab a blanket and some snacks, and spend the night stargazing in your backyard.
- Swing Low
Find a swing seat and spend the day rocking to the beat of your partner’s heart. If you can’t find a swing seat, get a rocking chair that’s big enough for two.
- Back of Your House
Cook some great food and go for a picnic…in your backyard! Don’t forget a hat and some sunscreen in case it gets uncomfortably sunny. Strengthen the connection by cleaning up together.
- Board Meeting
Monopoly, chess, checkers, and other board games are a great way of building rapport without breaking the bank.
- Invite Friends Over for a Drink
Invite your date and a few of your mutual friends to your place for an evening of conversation and fun. Drinks and snacks will help keep energy levels high.
- Water Sports
If you love water sports, drive to the beach and spend the day playing. This may be what you need to really connect. Don’t spend the whole day surfing; find some time to talk.
- Ask Your Family Over
If the relationship shows signs of getting serious, invite your family for an evening of introductions, fun, food, drinks and conversation.
Do you enjoy cycling? Do you live in an area that’s safe for cyclists? If the answer to both questions is yes, a biking date should be part of your plans. Don’t forget to carry something to drink.
- Dirty Dancing
Learn a few sexy moves and impress your date. Learn a few more if there’s a pole around the house that can safely hold your weight.
- Go for a Hike
If you live in an area of the world that’s blessed with parks and nature reserves, then go for a hike. You will not just get closer to nature, but also to each other.
- Amateur Astronomy
Grab a pair of telescopes and find your way around the solar system. A clear view of Venus may be what you need to set your date’s heart ablaze. A few snacks and a cup of coffee should keep the conversation going.
- Visit a Theme Park
Find a theme park and spend the day talking and walking around. Carry some cash for a cup of coffee.
- Go for a Drive
Grab a map, find an area you’ve never visited and go for a drive. With fuel prices being what they are these days, make sure its not too far away, or your cheap date will turn expensive very quickly. You could combine the drive with a picnic.
- Volunteer for a Cause
It may be tree planting every Saturday, free counselling every Sunday or handing out free clothes every Wednesday evening. Working together to support a cause that you are both passionate about will help build a strong connection between you.
- Learn a New Sport
It may be something as sedate as bowling, or as tough as riding a bull. Whatever it is, do it together; it will bring you closer.
- A Walk on the Wild Side
Bungee jumping, rolling downhill inside an inflatable ball, crossing a rickety rope bridge, rock climbing and similar activities will set your pulses racing, and the experiences will bring you closer together.
- Kissing Date
How many types of kisses are you familiar with? Research between dates, then practice when you meet. Try at least one different type of kiss on every date. In addition, try breaking the current kissing record, which stands at 58 hours, 35 minutes and 58 seconds.
- Lose Weight
If you have always struggled with extra weight, incorporate healthy eating and exercise into your dates. For example, meet in a gym, exercise, then go for a healthy treat afterwards, or go for a ‘jogging date.’
- Attend a Religious Ceremony
Attend a church service or any other religious ceremony in the company of your date. Discuss the sermon later over a cup of coffee.
- Book Reading Events
If you love the literary arts, attend a book reading event. Afterwards, share an ice cream and go over the details.
- Online Games
Play an online game together. With a fast internet connection, you can do this even when your partner is physically absent.
- Telephone Intimacy
A surprise call always works wonders. Spice your conversation with sweet nothings or turn up the heat with dirty talk.
- Virtually Written
Swap long, intimate emails. If you bump into something interesting during the course of your day, take a few photos and attach them to your virtual letter.
- He Kneads You
Get some massage oil and a few scented candles and give your date a full body massage. Cap the experience with a bath and several glasses of cheap wine.
- For Sale
Organize a garage sale together and use part of the proceeds to pay for a date. Save the rest for something really special.
- Flea Love
Visit a flea market and buy gifts. Whoever purchases the least interesting gift gets to pay for the coffee.
Start a collection. As long as you do it together, it doesn’t matter if its coins or insects. As your relationship grows, so will the collection.
- Home Improvement
Work up a sweat by sprucing up your house. The projects do not have to be complex; it can be something as simple as repainting the front door. Clean off by showering together later.
- Let’s Dance
Dance to your favorite songs. Make the experience more memorable by learning a new dance style on every date. Odori, anyone?
No karaoke please! Instead, spend the evening belting out your favorite romantic songs. Throw in a few foreign-language love songs to give the date an exotic touch.
- Watch a Talk Show
A few people will cringe at this one, but talk shows can be a wealth of knowledge, particularly on matters concerning romance. Improve your relationship by learning from other people’s successes and mistakes.
- Write a Poem
Handwritten poems are a great way of expressing your feelings even when they are written in a barely legible scrawl. Surprise your date by leaving them under a pillow, inside a pocket, or on the kitchen counter.
- Gone Fishing
Carry some snacks, find a quiet spot next to a river or a lake, and catch a few fish. Make a fire and roast them over hot coals. Cap the meal by swapping naughty stories over cheap wine.
- Oh, Shoot!
Find a shooting range and hone your gunnery skills. It is also a great stress management tool, so if your relationship is going through a rough patch, this may help. Talk to your date before implementing this idea as it may not be to everyone’s taste.
- A Chapter a Day
Take turns penning chapters of a romantic novel, with the two of you as the main characters. They shouldn’t too long, or you will spend the day doing nothing else but writing. A page or two per date should be enough.
- Works on the Skin
Draw tattoos on each other using non-toxic ink that can be easily washed off. The fun part comes afterwards; have a bath together and clean off those tattoos.
- Birthday Suit
Find a secluded swimming pool, lake or river and go skinny dipping. Laugh it off over a cup of hot coffee afterwards.
- Home Cinema
Get a movie and watch it at home. Alternatively, stream something from Netflix or Hulu. Try to pick something you’ve never watched.
- Days of Our Lives
Spend the evening laughing over old times. Photos and videos of your previous dates should come in handy at this point. Do you remember the coughing fit he had the first time he tried to serenade you?