Last Updated on October 6, 2021
Dates, like weddings, don’t have to cost a fortune. It’s natural to want to treat your partner to a charming date night. But you shouldn’t come out of the date wondering how you’ll pay your next rent.
The good news is that there are plenty of cheap date ideas to explore when you’re strapped for cash. You just need to know where to look.
Fortunately, we’ve done the homework for you and rounded up 45 unique date ideas that won’t break the bank.
1. Go Out to Breakfast
Not only is breakfast the most important meal of the day. It’s also way cheaper than dinner, which happens to be the meal synonymous with dates. With a breakfast date, you can treat your partner to all the bacon, eggs, and pancake as you brainstorm other affordable ways to spend the day ahead.
2. Go On A Scenic Road Drive
A car and some gas money are all you need to embark on a scintillating road drive with your partner. To make the most of it, set off with no specific destination in mind. And don’t forget to pack some snacks.
3. Explore Your Local City or Town
A perfect date doesn’t have to be in a faraway city. Not when you can explore your local town on a quick drive or bike ride.
4. Take a Hike
The primary thing required for a successful hike is a pair of sneakers (which I can bet you already have). So, throw on your sneakers and explore nearby trails around your town or neighborhood.
5. Go Camping
Contrary to what you may think, you don’t need expensive camping gear to have a memorable camping experience. Just get yourself a modest tent, warm clothing, a couple of sleeping bags, and you’re good to go.
6. Go On a Picnic
A picnic is a traditional cheap date idea that has kept its appeal over the years. Depending on where you’re going for the picnic, you can pack some food or grab pizza from a cheap pizzeria near you.
7. Hang Out At a Coffee Shop
A coffee date is perfect when you’re still getting to know each other or want to do some catching up.
8. Consider a Staycation
Stay in and binge-watch your favorite Netflix as you cuddle up on the couch. And while at it, try to read your partner’s body language. If they’re up for some steamy sex, don’t hesitate to give it to them.
9. Play House
If you’re staying in but don’t fancy the idea of a movie, why not play this childhood game with your partner? Playing house is recommended for couples that haven’t moved in together.
10. Listen To Throwback Records
Take turns listening to songs that evoke nostalgic memories, preferably memories of when the two of you began dating.
11. Browse At a Bookstore
You don’t have to be avid readers to find this cheap date idea attractive. What matters is that you could spend quality time together.
12. Read Each Other’s Tarot Cards
Want to know your partner’s general life direction and whether you’re a perfect match for one another? Why not take turns reading each other’s tarot cards?
13. Swap Hobbies
Hobby swapping is a great way to understand why your partner loves their hobby and what it means for them. As a date idea, hobby swapping costs almost nothing.
14. Compete At a Karaoke
If you’re both into music, this is a chance to put your vocal skills to the test as you spend quality time with your boo.
15. Find a Free Concert
There are always free concerts happening around you. Whether it’s a music concert or drama festival, plan your date around it and take advantage of free entry, cheap booze, and endless fun.
16. Volunteer Together
For couples who’re passionate about volunteerism, there are plenty of humanitarian causes to take part in together. You can plant a tree, donate blood, clean up the neighborhood, or visit a correctional facility on your date.
17. Take a Community Education Class
Not only does a community education class allow you to spend quality time with your dear one. You also get to learn valuable skills by the end of the class.
18. Test-drive Your Dream Car
Don your most glamorous outfits and check into a showroom like a couple ready to walk away with their dream car. But after you’re done test-driving the car, make up some silly (but believable) excuse why you won’t pay for it just yet.
19. Go Window-shopping
The fact that you don’t have cash to splurge on a date doesn’t mean you can’t window-shop for fine clothing or exquisite jewelry in stores down the blocks.
20. Have a Fun Photo Shoot
Armed with your smartphone, head to a favorite photo spot in your city and spend a few hours taking amazing photos of you together.
21. Give Each Other Massages
All you need for a spa treatment are some candles and essential oils. Take turns massaging each other’s backs and reminiscing about all the good times.
22. Go to a Drive-in Movie
Drive-in movies may have lost some popularity over the years, but they’ve maintained their magic touch. Grab some blankets, pillows, drinks, and popcorns, then check into a drive-in for some old-school fun.
23. Go for a Swim
Gather your swimsuit and hit the nearest public pool around. Better yet, drive to the nearest lake, river, or ocean.
24. Visit a Botanical Garden
Most botanical gardens either operate on a free-entry policy or charge incredibly low admission fees. A visit to these gardens is a chance to marvel at the beauty of Mother Nature while chatting away with your significant other.
25. Visit Expensive Open Houses
Check up your local listings for spectacular houses on sale and visit them with your significant other, posing as potential buyers.
26. Take Advantage of a Free Museum Night
Many museums have free days or nights where they admit members of the public free of charge. Check to establish your local museum’s free days and take advantage of the occasion to sample some amazing local culture with your boo.
27. Go Through Old Photos
Another exciting way to take a walk down memory lane. Exchange photos of you when you were younger. If you’ve dated for a while, focus on photos from the earlier days of your love life.
28. Write Love Letters to Each Other
Is there a more romantic way to spend a date than by writing a love letter to someone sitting right next to you? Make the letter as profound as it can be, then exchange them to see who’s most romantically creative.
29. Take an Online Quiz
You can opt for a random set of quizzes, such as those touching on topical issues. Or, you can take things a notch higher by filling out online personality questionnaires.
30. Cook a New Meal Together
Search for a new recipe, look for the ingredients, and enjoy preparing a meal together. Mistakes are totally allowed!
31. Find a DIY YouTube Tutorial to Try
YouTube contains thousands of exciting tutorials that love birds can try out together on a date. They range from crocheting to painting, drawing, and gardening, to mention but a few.
32. Run Errands Together
Whether it’s babysitting, pet-sitting, or doing grocery shopping for others, there’s something romantic about love birds running errands together.
33. Sample Unique Cuisines at a Food Market
Head over to a food market with your significant other and sample all manner of delectable cuisines. Then walk away without buying a proper meal.
34. Go On a Free Brewing/Winery Tour
Many brewing and wine-tasting tours are free. So take advantage of these tours while planning your next date.
35. Watch the Sunset/Sunrise
A sunrise or sunset date? Give me that any day.
Not only is stargazing one of the most romantic date ideas, it’s also one of the cheapest. A glass of your favorite drink and a romantic story can help spice up the experience. Needless to mention, be sure to plan the date during starry nights.
37. Learn a New Language
Don’t even think you need to attend actual classes for this. Not when there are tons of language learning apps to help you master a foreign language.
38. Explore Crafts
There are plenty of crafts you can explore together, from crocheting and sewing to pottery and woodworking.
39. Sit by a Fire
Some of the fondest memories ever are those of love birds cuddling up by a crackling fire.
40. Create a Bucket List
Grab a pen and notepad and together, jot down the things you’d like to accomplish before kicking the proverbial bucket.
41. Play Truth or Dare
‘Truth or Dare’ is a classic party game that continues to feature prominently on many dates. The game allows you to uncover some interesting facts about your partner, including facts that they’d ordinarily not share with you.
42. Go to a Local Trivia Night
If your partner is uncomfortable playing ‘Truth or Dare,’ you might consider charming them to a trivia night instead. It’s also a great way to determine whether you have shared interests. Most questions at trivia nights touch on music, movies, history, and anything in between.
43. Play a Puzzle Game
Traditionally used to test mental aptitude, jigsaw puzzles can also serve as a perfect cheap date idea.
44. Camp Out in Your Backyard
It’s amazing just how you can convert your backyard into a camping site. All you need is a tent, campfire, and some warm clothing.
45. Draw Each Other
You don’t have to be a Leonardo Da Vinci or Picasso to pull this incredibly cheap date idea. In fact, perfection isn’t required here. What matters is that you two had fun.
Evidently, there are tons of ways to treat your significant other to an unforgettable experience without breaking the bank.
Just remember that cheap doesn’t have to be boring. So, whichever date idea you choose from the above collection, ensure you make the experience as exciting as it can be.