Looking to spruce up your relationship? Check out these 50 cheap date ideas!

Bonding with your hubby or significant other can be hard in today’s economy when we are trying to be frugal with our money. Looking for a way to spice up your love life without breaking the bank? Check out my ideas below!

1.) Go to a budget cinema

Here in Green Bay, our local budget cinema tickets are only $3!

2.) Go for a hike

Trevor and I love anything that has to do with the outdoors. Going for a hike is not only good exercise, but a good way to spend some quality time together.

3.) Have a Wine-Night In

Nothing is more relaxing than sharing a bottle of wine while bonding over conversation. In fact, just last Saturday night my fiancé and I stayed up til 1am with a bottle of wine chatting about school, work, and life in general. It was so nice to relax together and catch-up. In our busy, rushed lives, sometimes we just need to slow our worlds down and making sure we are creating time for another.

4.) Make dinner together

In theory, this should be a great way to bond with your significant other. What actually happens: (in my experience!) I get stressed out when the fiancé crowds my kitchen and I end up taking over. Hey…It’s the thought that counts, right?

5.) Have a picnic

Cheesy, but every girl’s dream.

6.) Have a Netflix Marathon 

Start a new show together! Trevor and I got hooked on Lost two summers ago and we literally had no lives. It was SUPER hard not to Netflix cheat on each other.

7.) Write each other a letter

Here’s mine to my fiancé.

8.) Go through old pictures together

The good, the bad, and the ugly.

9.) Go ice skating

Ice skating is fun no matter WHAT age you are.

10.)  Tour de Bars

Bar hop in style….via your Schwinn.

11.) Grab a cup of coffee together

We love getting coffee at our local shop in town. Bonus points if you support small businesses!

12.) Light sparklers at night

‘Cause life was better when we were kids anyways, right?

13.) Go to a cheap hockey game

Even if your seats are way up, it’s still a blast!

14.) If you have a fireplace, sleep on the floor in front of the fire

It’s like a scene out of the Notebook!

15.) Watch the sunset

We achieved watching an East Coast sunrise and a West Coast sunset.

16.) Have a bonfire

Put the phone away, roast some mallows, and soak up the peacefulness.

17.) Go fishing together

You and me goin’ fishin’ in the dark…

18.) Lay in bed and eat pie

You can accomplish this, right?

19.) Volunteer in your community 

Doing good is a lot more fun when your love is by your side.

20.) Go for a drive

Bring some snacks, some tunes, and enjoy the ride! (If you’re interested in road trips, be sure to check out these helpful hints for a stress-free (cheap!) road trip!)

21.) Go to a high school sporting event

It’s a nice way to get out of the house without paying more than $5.

22.) Have a game night

And no, Trivia Crack doesn’t count.

23.) Go to a museum

Trevor and I have been to loads of museums together, including our fave, the Smithsonian

24.) Have an ice cream sundae night

Invest in all kinds of difference sauces and toppings and go nuts.

25.) Go bowling

Bowling usually is pretty inexpensive!

26.) Go to the zoo

Channel your inner-child and plan a date to the zoo! It never gets old.

27.) Go Geocaching

I’ve actually never done this, but I hear it’s pretty awesome!

28.) Lay a blanket and watch the stars come out

Bonus points: Do it when it’s chilly outside so you have an excuse to cuddle up!

29.) Go sledding

Sledding is so much cheaper than skiing- plus you get exercise walking up those hills!

30.) Walk to a pier and drink coffee

Simple moments are often the best.

31.) Window shop

You can look, but you can’t touch!

32.) Go golfing

Make it a friendly competition. Loser buys dinner!

33.) Start a woodwork project together

The memories you make in the process may be more valuable than the actual furniture itself!

34.) Go to a local comedy club

This is on my bucket list. I’ve still actually have never been to a comedy club!

35.) Visit your local animal shelter

Just don’t be tempted to leave with a cute little furball unless that was your original plan!

36.) If you live in a metropolitan area, take a walk downtown

I love people-watching. If you’re not in a metro area, drive to the nearest one!

37.) Pull your money together and spend a night in a cheap hotel with a Jacuzzi

This is one of my favorite things to do. I love staycations! I feel like I’m far away from home even if I’m not.

38.) Give each other a massage

Use lotions, oils, etc. Make it fun!

39.) Make a bucket list together

Talk about how you wish to accomplish the items on your list.

40.) Spend a day at the beach

Pop a couple of brew-skis and it’s a perfect day!

41.) Go rock-climbing indoors

There’s a lot of places that offer cheap rock-climbing for my day. My university used to open their rock wall to the public. Check out your local community center and see what they offer!

42.) Grill out

Hamburgers and brats. ‘Murica.

43.) Take a community photography class together

Inspire each other and get creative!

44.) Put the phone on self-timer and do a photo shoot

Some day you’re going to look back at those photos and be glad you did it!

45.) Go kayaking

Kayaking is a sport that has really taken off recently! We kayaked so much this past summer and had a blast.

46.) Go to your local community theater

Get cultured!

47.) Have a bake-off

You have one hour. Take turns making a secret recipe and see whose turns out better!

48.) Job shadow your partner, if allowed

My fiancé is an EMT, and the ambulance service here in town lets people ride-along if they are interested in learning more about the service. I’ve been meaning to shadow him for years now. I believe it would give me a greater appreciation of him and the work he does.

49.) Be a tourist in your own city.

Tour your city’s NFL stadium. Tour a brewery. Shop a bookstore. Sometimes we are blindly unaware of how awesome our own city or town is.

50.) Sweat it out

Studies have shown that working out together creates intimacy. Hit up the weight room, go for a swim, or run it out!

What’s the coolest (cheap!) date you’ve ever been on? Leave me a comment below!


I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.


  • I love the idea of looking through old pictures! I love pictures anyway, and it would be so fun to reminis and laugh together over that.

    • I’m the same way, Kristin! I love looking through old pictures and remembering the past :)

  • Very cool ideas. Definitely keep them. We love to watch The Voice and rarely watch anything else, so we record both nights and then watch them while snuggling on the couch. Perfect for us.

    • I LOVE THE VOICE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Leslie Soto

    These are all awesome ideas! I love making a bucket list together and having a bake off! I think my hubby & I need to adopt a few of these ideas ourselves!

    • Glad you enjoyed them, Leslie! :) Thanks for reading!

  • Lindsay Katherine

    This is such a sweet list. And can you be any cuter? I can’t even stand it! We had a bon fire a few weeks ago with Ginny, and it was great! I love that you act like you can’t skate so he holds your hand : ) Justin and I can definitely still do a lot of these with the baby or to get a babysitter for so we can have some alone time. Great list.

    • I’m happy to hear that you two still take time for yourself to go on dates! I think that’s especially important with a baby. Thanks Lindsay!

  • These are all great ideas! These are great tips for changing things up too!

  • Teanna

    I love this post! My husband and I try to do a lot of cheap dates, and we’ve done a lot of this list. I’ll save it for future reference!


    • Thanks for saving and reading, Teanna!

  • Liz

    So many fun ideas! We’re always looking for new things to do on date night :)

    • Thanks Liz! Hope they help!

  • Sara Strand

    There is this thing I found awhile ago called The Penny Date. Look for it on Google. It’s an image that was floating around on Facebook for awhile and it’s like, get in your car and based on heads/tails of the penny that’s the direction you turn. After so many turns you stop, and figure out what to do right where you are. Matt and I are going to try that on one of our kid-free nights.

    • That is such an amazing, spontaneous idea! That’s something we would love to do.

  • Heather Gee Davis

    Great ideas for date night and I will share it with my teenagers

  • Ariel Pingault

    These are all AWESOME ideas! My boyfriend and I can definitely check a lot of these off of our list! :) Thanks for giving me more ideas too! 😉

  • So many fun ideas! I’ve been married for almost 20 years and still go on dates. :)

    • Good for you. I think that’s important!

  • Christy Fleener

    Love these!!!! Thanks for sharing! I will definitely use these as a reference for future ideas!

  • Maggie Waid

    My husband and I love to go Ice skating, bowling, and hiking together. These are so fun and you can act really silly with each other and it really builds a good relationship. We also like to visit the local animal shelter and volunteer. These are such good ideas!

    • Thanks Maggie! We just love to get out of the house and have a good time!

  • Awesome tips, girl! Dave and I love finding new date ideas :) We definitely need to do better though. Madison has SO many amazing things to offer, and we don’t take advantage of them nearly enough!

    • That is a valid point; you two live in a gorgeous area! I haven’t been to Madison in three years. I really need to get over there soon!

  • That is quite a list…geocaching is a lot of fun…I have a hand held GPS, but now they have apps for it

    • So cool. I’d love to try it!!

  • Great list! I may have to get a bottle of wine and catch up with hubby tonight. Thanks for the ideas.

    • Yay! That’s a perfect night for me!!

  • Erica Wagenhauser

    What a great list… we have done many of these but lots of new ideas too thanks!

  • New goal in life:

    18.) Lay in bed and eat pie

    I have a date night challenge post at the beginning of every month, so important to connect!

    • That was my favorite one as well ;P

  • Netflix marathons are my favorite thing ever, especially when you totally fall in love with the show and can’t wait to keep watching!

    • I know! We are looking for a new show together! Any suggestions?

  • Dana Brillante-Peller

    I love all of your ideas! You both look so happy in all of the pics too!!

    • I am :) Thanks for noticing!

  • Patricia @ Grab a Plate

    Love all these awesome ideas! Volunteering, hockey game, zoo! Fun stuff! When my hubs and I were first married we’d go to the budget/discount movies every Sunday night. We still (after 20 years – whoa!) talk about that!

    • Good for you guys! Trevor and I vowed to always keep date night alive!

  • Shann Eva

    Great ideas! You guys are such a cute couple. I’m super jealous that you got to hold that baby Kangaroo…adorable. And, we’re having a wine night tonight after we get the last kiddo in bed! Woo hoo!

    • Thanks Shann! Yay, I’m happy for you two! Enjoy your night of relaxation :)

  • Rhiannon Skeen

    What fun ideas! The hubs and I are long overdue for a date night and now that our family is plus one, cheap is perfect! Great suggestions!

    • Aw congrats on the addition to the family! Thanks for reading :)

  • These are great ideas! They all sound like so much fun. My husband and I have started making dinner together once a week and it’s so much fun. We both enjoy it.

    All the Best,
    Allison | http://www.LiveLifeWellBlog.com

    • Thanks, Allison! I’m happy to hear that you two bond over making dinner! It’s a great way to connect :)

  • These are all great ideas that I’d love to try sometime.
    I always like doing something other than the typical dinner and a movie thing.

    xoxo, Jenny

    • Same here! That gets so old.

  • Toni Rynne

    I love these ideas. I will have to try some for my dating blog.

    Thanks so much for sharing.
    Toni – http://loveinbrisbane.weebly.com

    • Thanks so much for reading!

  • So many awesome ideas! Whenever I tell my husband I want a date night, he automatically assumes it’s going to be expensive haha I’ll have to keep these in mind! :)

    • Nope, doesn’t have to be that way!! 😉

  • Awesome list of dates! I love to go wine and dining!

    • Same here! Thanks Ashley! We are huge wine lovers in this fam :)

  • Ashley Jo Althoff

    This is a great list! Thanks for the advice :) But I am pretty sure that is not a baby kangaroo! Haha 😉

    • It seriously is! I wouldn’t lie 😉