Dating can be one way that a typically frugal person can overspend, especially during the initial stages where people are aiming to impress through grandiose gestures. However, there are plenty of ways to be romantic without breaking the bank. Today I will share some date ideas that you can take that will cost you next to nothing, yet will provide you and your date with priceless memories.
Perhaps this was an obvious one but hiking can be a great way to get to know someone and it won’t cost you a cent. By going on a hike in a national park you not only get to go on an adventure and see some unique sights, but you also can get away from the noise of the city which will allow you to get to know your date a lot easier. With just you, your date and nature, you have an intimate yet relaxed setting where you can explore and create new experiences together.
Whether it be the beach, a lake, a waterhole, a waterfall, a dam or any other water source, these can be great options to cool off in summer and once again they are free. If you choose to pick a waterhole or a waterfall, you can even combine this one with the first option, as most of these places require some hiking to get to. Go rock pool hopping, have a walk on the beach, explore that lake, you really can’t go wrong with water (assuming you can swim).
Instead of going out to a restaurant, why not cook dinner at your house? It can be a much cheaper and more intimate atmosphere. If you can’t cook or have a tendency to burn things, try a slow cooker. There’s plenty of simple recipes out there that are very set and forget that taste delicious. If you can cook, then the sky’s the limit to what you make your date. Bonus points if you follow up with Netflix or a video rental, that way you get the classic dinner and a movie combo at a bargain price.
This one works with the first three options but you can do it literally anywhere, including your local park. Simply grab a picnic blanket, make some sandwiches at home and you get all the benefits of taking your date out for lunch without the unnecessary expenses of restaurants or being crammed into a small room.
Okay, for some of you out there who hate the outdoors, I’ve got another solution. In this era, there are hundreds of free, local events being held by a variety of people and institutions. Charity events, museums, art galleries, markets, local talent shows and the list goes on. There are plenty of events constantly being held for free, with enough variety that you and your date should be able to agree on something.
And there you have it, five cheap but memorable date ideas. While fine dining, expensive presents and other grandiose gestures can be good for getting brownie points, I think we can all agree that these gestures often get quickly forgotten about. By focussing your efforts on exploring, seeing unique natural features and checking out local events, you will be able to form life-long memories with your date. If it works out, you’ll be able to reflect on them years down the line and if you don’t, well you still got to go out and experience life without paying an arm and a leg. It’s the ultimate win/win.