When it comes to dates, the sky’s the limit. You can spend a fortune on dinner, go for a helicopter ride, or attend a concert in the city. All these are expensive dates that may make you regret your financial decisions the next day.
Budget dates are the solution as they give you the room to be more creative, on top of saving you money. If you’re looking for something a little more adventurous – and a lot less expensive – check out our list of 39 cheap date ideas that will impress your partner!
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Cheap Ideas for First Dates
1. Have a picnic in the park
One cheap first date idea that’s perfect for spring or summer is having a picnic in the park. You can pack your own food, or buy some from a nearby cafe. Don’t forget that soft blanket!
2. Watch the sunset together
Among the most romantic things you can do with your significant other is watching the sunset together. It’s free, and you can do it just about anywhere. All you need is a blanket and some snacks, and you’re good to go!
3. Take a hike
If you’re both into fitness, why not go for a hike? It’s a great way to get some fresh air and spend time together. You can even make it a competition to see who can reach the ending point first, like the top of a hill.
4. Visit a museum
For a cheap date that’s also educational, visit a local museum. You can learn about different cultures and histories, and maybe even find a new favorite exhibit. Look whether the nearest museum has free or discounted entries on specific days and plan accordingly.
5. Have a game night
A cheap date idea that you can do at home is to have a game night. You can play your favorite board games or even make up your own. This is a great way to spend some quality time together without spending a lot of money.
6. Have a movie night
A cheap date idea that’s perfect for winter is to have a movie night. You can either rent a movie or stream one online. Keep the popcorn in mind!
If you’re looking for a romantic cheap date idea, go stargazing. You can find a spot in your backyard or even at a local park. This is a great way to spend some time together and admire the beauty of the night sky.
8. Explore the beach
For a cheap date idea that’s perfect for summer, explore the beach. You can go for a walk, build sandcastles, or even just sit and relax. You might want to bring some sunscreen!
9. Go to a cheap amusement park
Going to an amusement park doesn’t have to be expensive. There are many cheap amusement parks that you can visit.
You can also find coupons online or in the newspaper. Spending the day riding all sorts of stuff and playing games!
10. Caffenaite yourselves at the coffee shop
For a budget date that’s also low-key, visit a local coffee shop. You can chat and get to know each other over your favorite drinks. Plus, it’s a decent place where you can do some people-watching together.
11. Visit a farmers market
A great cheap date idea is to visit your local farmers market. You can stroll around and check out all the different stalls, and sample some of the produce on offer. You can also buy some ingredients and cook dinner together later.
12. Make dinner together
If you’re both into cooking, why not make dinner together? You can either cook something simple or try a new recipe.
This is a great way to spend some time together and get to know each other better. Plus, you get to save on groceries!
Cheap Date Ideas for Couples
13. Do a photoshoot
Photoshoots are quite affordable unless you’re paying a world-class photographer. Still, you can find skilled photographers nearby that can work with your budget. Have the pictures taken at home, in your garden, or in other scenic places near you.
14. Cycle with your partner
One inexpensive date idea for couples is to go cycling together. You can either cycle around your neighborhood or a different cycling route in your area, such as the forest. This is a great way to get some exercise and spend time with your partner.
15. Go for a drive
If you have a car, you can go for a scenic drive. Just drive out of town or into the hills while remembering to save on gas. It’s a great way to get out of the house, bond more with your significant other, and have fun.
16. Play tourist for the day
You can play tourist for the day in your own city or town. This cheap date idea involves visiting all the tourist attractions that you’ve never been to before. It’s a great way to learn more about your local area and spend time with your partner.
17. Walk your dog together
If you have a dog, you can go for a walk together. Maybe it’s something either of you always does alone. Doing it together is a great way to spend time with your partner while keeping fit. You can even make it a competition to see who can walk the dog the farthest.
18. Play hide and seek
Yes, couples can play hide and seek too. It’s a classic and fun game to make the relationship more exciting.
19. Revisit your bucket lists
You may be surprised that you have already achieved some things on your bucket lists together. But there are still many things that you have not done yet. You can spend some time together and plan what you want to do next.
20. Write each other love letters
This uncostly and creative date idea is quite romantic and will surely make your partner swoon. Just write down all the things you love about them and put the paper in an envelope.
Feel free to add a special drawing or doodle to make it more personal. Make the whole more fun by reading each other’s letters loud!
21. Workout together at home
Couples that sweat together, stay together. You can find workout music and videos online or buy an exercise DVD (the old-school way). There are also some fitness apps that you can use.
Just make sure to find a routine that’s not too challenging and one that you both will enjoy.
22. Create a romantic song with your partner
If you and your partner are into music, why not create a romantic song together? It can be about your love for each other or just a general love song.
You don’t need to be a professional musician to do this. Just have fun and enjoy making music with your partner. Remember to laugh hard at your significant other clumsy lyrics or vocals too!
23. Hold a karaoke night
This cheap date idea is perfect for couples that love to sing. Just turn on your karaoke player or app and start singing your heart out.
You can also invite some friends over to join in on the fun. Or if you want to keep it intimate, just sing to each other.
24. Try salsa dancing
If you’ve never done this with your other half, now would be a great time. No clues? Check a few tutorials online and put on the first Salsa song that you see on Google.
25. Do the yoga
Want another free date idea? Let your bodies do the yoga!
There are numerous yoga poses for couples that a quick search on Google will give you more info about. It’s time to strengthen your bond far beyond the usual levels.
26. Learn a new recipe in the kitchen
One low-budget date idea that you can do at home is to learn a new recipe together. You can either pick something that you’ve never cooked before or learn how to make your partner’s favorite dish. You can even take turns cooking for each other.
27. Check your wedding photos
If you’re married, you can go back and look at your wedding pictures for fun and bonding. You can also compare your wedding photos to your current photos and see how much you’ve both changed.
You can even look at other couples’ wedding photos and get some inspiration for new photos to take together. After all, marriage is all about continuing to date each other.
28. Take a trip down memory lane
Whether you’ve been together for two months or twenty years, it’s always fun to take a trip down memory lane. You can look at old photos, watch old home videos, and even visit the places where you first met or had your first date. Doing this will help you remember all the good times you’ve had together and will make you appreciate each other even more.
29. Read romance novels together
Maybe you and your partner love to read. So why not read romance novels together?
You can take turns reading aloud to each other, or you can both read silently and discuss the book afterward. This is a perfect way to even get some new ideas for your own relationship.
30. Test drive the car of your dreams
There’s no better thing than test-driving your dream car with the person of your dreams. It’s the cheap date idea that will make both of your hearts race.
Who knows? Maybe you’ll even buy the car together sometime!
31. Volunteer together
One cheap date idea that will make you and your partner feel good about yourselves is volunteering together. You can help out at a soup kitchen, animal shelter, or any other local organization.
Not only will you be chasing some good cause, but you’ll also be spending time together. It’s a win-win!
Cheap Date Ideas for College Students
32. Play truth or dare
This popular game is also a cheap date idea that’s perfect if you want to get to know your partner better. You can take turns asking each other questions or dares. Make sure to keep it light and fun so you don’t end up getting too embarrassed.
33. Binge-watch YouTube videos
You can find all kinds of videos on YouTube, from music videos to educational ones. You and your partner can spend some time watching together and bond over it.
34. Have an indoor picnic in your room
If you’re in college, chances are you’re living in a dorm room. But that doesn’t mean you can’t have a romantic picnic inside. Just spread a blanket on the floor, put out some snacks and drinks, and enjoy each other’s company.
35. Ride bikes
Have access to bikes? Get on the road with your date and go for a ride. Explore those woods near your campus or town if you’ve never been there before.
36. Visit a cheap arcade
If you’re looking for some cheap date ideas that are also fun, try visiting an arcade. You can play all kinds of games, from racing to shooting games. And if you get tired of playing, you can always get some cheap food from the vending machines.
37. Explore your taste in music
If you both are into music, consider the free date idea of exploring your taste in music. As a college student, visiting different music stores or going to yard sales to look for interesting records may be out of the question. So, you can also download some new songs that you’ve been meaning to listen to and have a mini dance party in your room.
38. Locate a free concert
In the summer, there are bound to be free concerts going on in your town or city. So, cheap date idea number one is to find out if there’s a free concert happening near you and take your date along.
Check out concert websites to see if there are any upcoming concerts in your area. Who knows, your favorite band or musician may be performing!
39. Take a walk in the park
This cheap date idea is perfect if you’re both nature lovers. Take a walk in the park and enjoy the scenery. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can even bring a picnic along and make a day of it.
Wrapping It up
As you’ve seen, there are plenty of cheap date ideas that you can try out. So, don’t let a lack of money stop you from having a good time with your partner. If you don’t believe in spending an arm and a leg on dates, these options suit you too.
The good thing is that you can even combine several activities on one date. An example from the list would be creating romantic songs and having karaoke or cycling and playing tourist in your area. It’s not hard to find the combo that works for you and takes the fun to the next level!