Nobody likes to go on a cheap date – but a frugal date? That’s a different prospect entirely.
If you and your partner are looking to get more for less, then these 19 money-saving date ideas are a great way to spend more time – not money – together.
1. Go browsing at a bookstore. If you and your partner find something you both want to read, don’t grab your wallets out yet. See if the titles are available at your local library instead and read them for free! Reading a book together is a great shared experience – here are a few options to get you started.
2. Listen to your favourite throwback music. Pick the albums that were special to you while you were dating, or hit shuffle and see if you can find a new favourite jam!
3. Grab brunch or breakfast. Dinner dates are a classic but they can get expensive. Breakfast offers a more frugal option and morning dates are massively underrated ways to start your day.
4. Watch the sun rise or set. There’s a reason this crops up in practically every romantic movie ever. It’s sweet, simple, romantic – and free. What’s not to like? For bonus points, combine it with a picnic for a two-in-one cheap date night (or morning) idea.
5. Celebrate your special years. Find movies, music, photos from a year special to you both. This could be when you got married, started dating, or even when you were each born.
6. Volunteer together. Taking some time to work together at a homeless shelter might not sound like a typical date, but you might be surprised at how satisfying and effective it is at bringing you closer together.
7. Experience an open mic night. If you can front the two-drink minimum, heading to a local open mic night lets you discover the amazing talent right on your doorstep.
8. Go on a hike. If the weather is great and you’re feeling athletic, going on a hike with your partner (or just a stroll through a nature preserve) gives you the winning combination of beautiful views and special time together.
9. Go hunting for wild berries. Berries in summer and apples in fall are just begging to be turned into delicious pies and jams. The only thing better than fresh fruit is picking it with the person you love.
10. Take a stroll. There’s always more to explore in your local area. Head to a local cafe, grab a beverage, and take a stroll around your local community.
11. Find local free events. Depending on where you live, you may find that the local community puts on events like concerts in the park, free theatre nights, and so on. Take advantage!
12. Cook a meal together. It’s far cheaper to eat in than go to a restaurant and it’s a great chance to share your favourite recipes with one another – or try out something brand new.
13. Takeaway by candlelight. Even the cheap and cheerful local takeaway can be made fancy with the right application of candles! Best combined with soft background music.
14. Have your own happy hour. Pick out your favourite drinks (or pick them for each other) and make an evening of simply sitting and enjoying one another’s company with a tasty drink in hand.
15. Backyard stargazing. Grab a couple of sleeping bags and a picnic blanket, maybe some hot cocoa, and take in the wondrous night sky above you. This makes for an excellent surprise date night too.
16. Play board games. If you’ve already got a set of Monopoly or Clue, they make for a great cheap date night. If you want to try something new, you can sometimes rent board games from your local library.
17. Rent a movie. Seeing the latest and greatest out of Hollywood on the big screen is a great experience, but there’s a lot to be said for the intimacy of a private viewing in your own home. It’ll save a lot of money on both tickets and snacks, and you can rent your movie just as easily through YouTube or your preferred subscription service.
18. Plan your next date night. This one is a little meta. Planning fun things to do can be just as fun as actually doing them, and planning out your next set of date nights means you always have an idea in the can ready to go. No more humming and hawing. That’s why it’s a key part of our recommended method of planning date night.
19. Visit a virtual museum. Museums are great date night ideas and are often light on the wallet too. But if you don’t live near a museum, you can still enjoy them with your partner through a virtual visit! This is one of our favourite date night ideas to do at home, and it’s cheap (if not free) to boot.
Like one (or all!) of these ideas? Add it to your Cupla To-Do list to share it with your partner instantly and keep track of all the awesome that’s still to come. Or if you’re ready to book it in right now, use the app’s automatic date night time finder to set up a slot that works for both you and your partner instantly.What’s that? You’re not using Cupla yet? Well here’s a great excuse to try it. You can trial Cupla, the dedicated couple’s shared calendar app, for free on iOS or Android.