50 Ideas For Inexpensive Dating
1) An ice-skating rink, indoors or out, offers great excuses for holding hands, falling on each other “by accident,” and cuddling up together, hot chocolate in hand, to warm up.
2) Alternatively, the roller-skating rink lets you rev up your systems, lose your inhibitions, and enjoy being the oldest kids there.
3) Go pick fruits, either by yourselves or on a double or triple date. Then go home to the kitchen and make up recipes for the fruits. Judge one another’s results, as though it’s a reality TV competition.
4) Take in a baseball game. The cheap seats may be as little as $5 a piece. Bring enough extra cash for hot dogs and a few beers.
5) Rent bicycles, or maybe one tandem bike, and just go on a long ride in the park. Hit a hot dog stand when it’s break time, or bring along sandwiches and water.
6) Locate the nearest movie drive-in. Bring along your own fave supermarket snacks, pillows, and blankets. Let your guy choose the film. You’ll earn points for being agreeable, and you know you’re probably not going to see much of the movie anyway.
7) Browse at the bookstore, and find common ground by sharing favorite and unfavorite books. Leaf through the Kama Sutra for inspiration for later.
8 ) Go bowling. Tease him by pointing out how many strangers wore his rented bowling shoes before, and enter your pet name for him on the scoreboard for the world to see.
9) Instead of the upscale wine bar, go for beers at the corner bar. Pick a place with some games like darts or pool. The loser can pay the winner for a choice of jukebox tunes.
10) Get together and build something. Ask him for his help constructing a piece of furniture. Be a good sport if it falls apart easily.
11) Buy carnival tickets so you can be kids again. Ride the rides, share carnival food, and find out if he can win you a prize.
12) Keep track of local deals on dining out. Check websites like Restaurant.com and the websites of local bars you like for specials or promotional events on certain days.
13) Start a conversation about his dream car. Go to a local dealer and test-drive the object of desire. Take turns at the wheel, but don’t criticize each other’s driving.
14) Visit a chocolate factory or commercial bakery that gives tours. Search on the internet or call the ones in your local area. If you need a group to get a tour, call other couples to join you.
15) At that certain time of the year, visit a haunted house. See a scary movie beforehand to prepare your nerves.
16) Break out the aprons and cook a meal together. You may be successful, or you may resort to calling for Chinese delivery, but either way, it’ll be fun.
17) If you get good enough at cooking, ask another couple over for a potluck. Get them to bring over the appetizer and the sweets, and the two of you handle the entree.
18) Visit a petting zoo, with some bread for the critters. To get rid of the resultant animal smells, shower together when you get home.
19) Coerce him into going to the flea market, where you’ll prove there’s something for everybody, including things you didn’t know existed. You may find he has interests you were unaware of.
20) Playing 20 Questions can be an opportunity to learn more about one another. You each write down 20 questions to ask. Use open-ended questions that will have longer-than-one-word answers.
21) Go to an art show and converse in an ostentatious manner. You can locate shows year round at colleges, libraries, and community centers.
22) Go hiking. Bring cameras along. End the day lying on the hood of your car gazing up at the stars.
23) Have an indoor picnic on a blanket on the floor. No insects, plus you’re handily located on a blanket on the floor afterward.
24) For an inexpensive drinking option, go on a tour of a winery or brewery. You’ll learn things about wine or beer, too, while getting buzzed.
25) Sign up for a class together, to learn about something that’s new to both of you. There are many classes, ranging from food to martial arts, for you to choose from, offered by community continuing education programs, typically in 8-week sessions.
26) Most museums have one day a week with free admission or admission for a small donation. Decide which exhibits you each want to see there ahead of time. But experience each other’s choices together.
27) On a special occasion, journey to a bed and breakfast. You can get one night inexpensively during the colder off-season. Use the money you save for extras like a hot tub or breakfast in bed.
28) See a local band perform. You can find them on MySpace. Take turns picking the bands you each want to see. Save money on drinks by bringing your own.
29) Dress up like serious home buyers, leave your apartment, and visit realtors’ open houses. Be entertained by the decor of others. Talk about where you’d put the furniture.
30) Take a pottery class together. Then decorate your living space with your art works.
31) Get a psychic reading together. Practice keeping a straight face ahead of time, so your incredulousness won’t show. It will be fun to see how accurate or how ridiculous your reading turns out to be.
32) Go to an indoor rock-climbing gym. Have a race to the top. Sore muscles could be an excuse for a steaming shower together later.
33) Catch a theater production at a local college or high school. It can be a lot of fun to see a production of one of your favorite musicals or dramas for such a small price. Schools generally have a show in the fall and another in the spring.
34) Have a friendly competition at the rifle range. The loser of each round gets to buy the next round’s ammo, while the winner gets to gloat.
35) Go sledding. If you need sleds, use garbage can lids. Wear bike helmets because it’ll be geekier. Finish up the event with cups of cocoa.
36) Make your own spa night at home. Take a bubble bath and then give each other a full-body massage. Stay up all night and sleep the next day.
37) Stargaze in the warmth indoors at the planetarium. Sneak a blanket in to get cozier. Go when it’s not too busy, to be more alone. Call to inquire about off-peak times.
38) To see a play or musical on the cheap, sometimes you can get tickets to a dress rehearsal. Call theaters to inquire. It’s a fraction of the cost for the same production.
39) Volunteer together to do something you both care about, like working at the soup kitchen or the animal shelter.
40) For quiet together time, draw portraits of one another. You’ll need paper, art supplies, and a bottle of wine.
41) Go shopping together – at garage sales. For good merchandise cheap, try garage sales in high-income neighborhoods.
42) Get free one-day passes to that gym you can’t afford. Get him to spot you, or to compete with you. Don’t forget to use the pool or the sauna.
43) Take a weekend to learn more about each other’s hobbies. You teach him to do your thing and learn to do his.
44) Plan a trip you think you can’t afford. Plan exactly what you want to do, and use this as an incentive to save up your loose change for a period of time. See how much you actually save and what happens.
45) Borrow movies from the public library. Decide whose movie pick you’ll watch first with a coin toss. Be tolerant and don’t make fun of each other’s choices.
46) If you still live near to the places you grew up, visit each other’s childhoods. Take photos of yourselves at the important landmarks.
47) See the sights in your own town. There are probably tourist attractions there that you’ve just never happened to go to. Pretend you’re from out of town. Get a guidebook or look online for travel info about your city, plan an itinerary, and take lots of photos.
48) Go to open mic night at a local coffee house. There might be some great talent, or it might all be so terrible that it will be good for a laugh on the way home.
49) Attend a university event that’s open to the public. Visit the college’s website and find out about events like lectures and discussion panels, which may include some of your favorite brainy celebrities or authors.
50) Admission for amateur night at the local comedy club is usually free, except for having to buy two drinks per person. Whether the comedian’s bits are funny, or just his attempts at comedy are, it’ll be a good time.