Living life on a budget doesn’t mean putting an end to date night.
Your relationship is still very important and it absolutely deserves your attention. Scheduling regular date nights with your partner is the best way for you to reconnect among an endless sea of work, kids, gym, eat, TV and more work.
Instead of expensive, long, wine-fuelled romantic dinners or tickets to a show, swap in some simple, but fun, date night ideas to keep you and your partner connected and happy.
Here are seven date ideas that are under $30 (and yes- that’s for two!):
The Drive-In Movies
Few and far between now, the drive-in movie theatre has all the romance of yesteryear and all the fun of being in your own little bubble of a private cinema. Pack blankets, pillows and gourmet snacks and enjoy a night under the stars watching the big screen.
Play Pool at a Dive Bar
Take a pocket of spare change and head to a dive bar that has a pool table and a jukebox. Many an hour can be whiled away together with a pool cue in hand and a jaunty tune in the background.
Breakfast is such an underrated date night option.
For a start, it’s budget friendly. Eggs can only cost so much, after all. There is also little temptation to hit the alcoholic beverages before noon, so that also contributes to the wallet-friendly factor.
Finally, you can sample some of your city’s best restaurants at breakfast time and soak up all the ambiance, service and gourmet fare that would usually cost a bomb – for under $30!
Find your nearest comedy club and check their gig guide for cheap and free entry nights – usually during the week. Go and enjoy a night of belly-laughs with your sweetie. All those feel-good endorphins are great for both of you and your relationship.
The Spare Change Date
This is a brilliant date idea on so many levels. You know that huge jar of spare change that you probably have lying around your house somewhere? Go get it! Before you do anything else, conduct a thorough search through every couch cushion, car ashtray and old handbag that you own to top it off. Then, get a huge bag and lug all your spare change to a bank that has a change-sorting machine.
You pour the change in and the machine tallies your total for you on a little docket. Take that to the bank teller who will exchange your coins real, paper money.
However much you end up with will determine your date for the night. Last time we did this we got $90, added our $30 budget to that and headed straight to a lovely restaurant for a nice meal out.
This is a great way of saving money that ensures that you still get to have an extra special date night every few months.
The Driving Range
Go with an adventurous spirit and you’ll love this one, even if you’ve never hit a golf ball before.
Head to the driving range where you can hire a bucket of balls and some golf clubs (or you may have your own). You can usually find yourselves a cold beverage or two as well!
If you’ve never played golf before, hassle the guys in the pro shop for some tips. Getting your swing right can be hard. If you have a partner that’s played before, then that’s even better. Get them to talk you though it and show you how it’s done.
Then, whack some golf balls! It’s therapeutic and practice makes perfect.
Italian Night at Home
You don’t even need to leave the house to have a date night! To differentiate from every other night at home, though, there are a few key things to do.
First of all, theme it. Italian night is an easy favorite. Get in the kitchen together and make some pizzas, open a bottle of Italian wine while you cook and finally, settle in to a movie set in Italy (think Roman Holiday, Under the Tuscan Sun or The Italian Job) with a bowl of gelato and two spoons. Bellissimo!
To make it really feel like a date night, you should also ensure the TV and computer remains off (until it’s time to watch the movie), that you don’t answer unimportant phone calls and that you both make the effort to dress up a little for your date. Put on soft music and light candles while you dine together.
Emma Merkas is the Relationships Go-to Girl and Co-founder of $30 Date Night. With over 1500 date ideas for under $30, your relationship should never get boring!