Dinner and a movie, concerts, a night at the bar – dating can be expensive! Even nominally inexpensive activities like bowling can add up when you have add-ons to pay for (lane rental, shoe rental, games, dinner, drinks, etc.). But a date isn’t about how you spend your money; it’s about how you spend your time. Here are 8 fun ideas for dates that will WOW your significant other – without breaking the bank.
8 Inexpensive Date Ideas
A romantic picnic in the park is an old stand-by for winning the love of your sweetheart. But it’s even easier to do than you might realize. If you don’t have a basket, you can use a backpack. Stop by the grocery store and pick up some easy-to-eat finger foods like cheese and crackers or hummus and carrot sticks, plus a bottle of inexpensive wine or sparkling grape juice. Add a blanket, pick out a location, and voila! Your afternoon of romance is all set.
- Nature Walk
Walking through a natural area is a great way to relax, especially with a companion by your side. It helps you commune with the world around you, and can even help lower your blood pressure and anxiety. A nature walk can be extremely educational, too, from seeing different species of plants and animals to discovering areas in your vicinity you didn’t even know existed. Plus, you and your significant other might find a new, secret place that’s special just for the two of you.
- Movie Marathon
Binge-watching TV shows is easy, but putting together a themed movie night? That takes planning. Start by picking a theme, such as foreign travel, noir classics, or childhood memories. Then, pick two or three movies to go along with the theme. In addition, don’t just choose typical movie snacks like popcorn and chocolate; pick a few food items that go along with your theme. For example, if you choose foreign travel, make some snack food from countries represented by the movies you pick.
- DIY Historical Tour
No matter where you live, history is all around you. From famous architecture to Native American settlements, any area can be full of history. The best way to find out the history near you is to do some research. You can always start by looking online, but if you have a hard time finding information on your area, try the library. Then, take your significant other to some cool historical spots!
- Free Classes
Many local libraries, community centers, and park districts offer a wide variety of free classes, from art and music to computers and even math. Find something fun that you and your significant other both enjoy doing and sign up!
- Open House Surfing
Just because you go to an open house doesn’t mean you need to buy. Come up with a pair of pretend names, dress up in nice clothes, and look up some local open houses. You may even get some free cookies out of it!
- Go Geocaching
Do you and your significant other enjoy treasure hunts, solving puzzles, or exploring new places? Then you’ll love geocaching! All you need is a smartphone and your searching caps. Download a geocaching app, and go looking – it’s a fun activity that will make you use your ingenuity and your instincts.
- Go Thrifting
Thrift stores and flea markets are the subject several of hit TV shows for a good reason: they’re full of fun, unique, and occasionally worthwhile finds. But even when you don’t find a rare coin worth a few thousand dollars, you can still often take a trip down memory lane by seeing clothes, music, jewelry, furniture, and more from years, decades, or, occasionally, centuries ago. Plus, just because you go into a thrift store doesn’t mean you have to buy anything. You can have a day of adventure and fun without it costing you a dime.!
Michelle is a 20-something new mom, dog lover, and freelance writer/solopreneur living in Chicago. She's currently fighting back to get in the black while learning how to make great financial decisions for the future. You can find her personal debt story at fitnpoor.com and her site for parents wanting to raise money-smart children at everylittlecent.com
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