It’s difficult to come up with date ideas that don’t put a hurt on your wallet, especially in today’s economy. If you’ve checked out a news website, turned on the TV, or picked up a paper, you’re probably aware that the economy isn’t doing so great at the moment. Whether you’ve lost your job or are just trying to save some extra money, you shouldn’t let your dating world crumble just to pinch a few pennies. In fact, it’s possible to woo your significant other on a budget, as long as you’re willing to get creative and plan ahead. You may even find that your date is more impressed with your clever plans than he or she would be with a pricey restaurant dinner.
You can make up for what you’re financially lacking, if you’re willing to put some thought into your dating plans. If you’re looking to get out of the house, start combing the internet for ideas. You’d be surprised at how many discounted and free events there are out there. If you live near a major city, publications like Time Out (either on the web or in magazine form) can be a great reference point. If you don’t, there are plenty of other similar publications and websites out there that can help. Your local newspaper probably has a nightlife or upcoming events section.
You can also go straight to the source. Try searching the internet for nearby places of interest to see if they have any discounts or special events listed on their websites. Taking your partner to half price night at your local museum or zoo for a first date is a lot more interesting than dinner and a movie. If you and your significant other are sports fans, look to see if there’s a minor league team near you. Tickets are often much more affordable, and you can enjoy discovering a new team together.
Search bars and venues for free or cheap music performances by local acts. You can still enjoy the feel of catching live music without paying the big bucks for tickets to a major artist’s concert. Some bars and restaurants also host free tasting nights or have special brunch, lunch or dinner deals well worth investigating. Sign up for email newsletters from all of these places, and you’ll always be in the loop on their discounts and freebies.
Heading out into the great outdoors can be another low or no cost alternative to traditional date ideas. Go for a walk in your local park or take a picnic there. Better yet, find a nearby place for a hike and make a day of it. You’ll get to enjoy nature, each other’s company, and a little exercise. If you and your date are sporty types, meet up for a game of one-on-one basketball when it’s warm out or go ice skating when it’s cold (save even more if you both own your own skates).
If you’re a pair of do-gooders, try volunteering together. A lot of parks and/or beaches need people to help with seasonal gardening and clean up. If you’re not outdoorsy, try volunteering for another cause you both believe in. Animal lovers can spend an afternoon helping out at a shelter or pet adoption fair. If you’re both bookworms, consider volunteering to read stories to kids at your local library or hospital. Doing good while flirting and chatting with your partner will let your sweetie see you in a whole new light while putting you both in a great mood.
A Date Doesn’t Have To Be Expensive To Be Fun
As you can see, there are so many options out there for fun but affordable dates. A little research can save you big bucks and win you lots of points with your boyfriend or girlfriend. Plus, if all else fails, you can always fall back on an old dating standby—dinner at your place, cooked with love by you.