Friday, March 1, 2013

Frugal Friday: Frugal Date Night Ideas

As you may know, on this blog I talk a lot about creating healthy families. One of the most important parts of a healthy family is a healthy marriage. Healthy marriages, like families, take work and effort and don't happen without planned time together. But dates can be expensive. If you count the cost of a babysitter, going out for dinner and tickets to a movie or other activity...that adds up! And often the cost is unrealistic for a couple trying to be frugal and live within their means. My husband and I have been married now for eleven plus years and we try to have at least one date every week, often more. I've come up with a list of over 50 frugal date night ideas that won't break the bank or the budget.
One of our "date night dinners" my husband and I have enjoyed. One of our favorite date night traditions is drinking homemade grape juice, which we save for special occasions only...
  1. Candlelight Dinner - This is one of our favorite dates. We send the kids to bed and cook a yummy dinner together (or my husband will cook it for me since it usually falls on Saturday - his night to cook)...
  2. Have a music or dance night - turn on the music and dance or if you're not the dancing type, then just listen and enjoy.
  3. Have a picnic in the backyard - You can even go stargazing afterward if it's a clear night.
  4. Go on a hike - Another favorite of ours. Get away from the crowds for a little while and enjoy nature together. Pack a lunch or dinner and have a fun get away.
  5. Be a tourist in your own town or a neighboring one - go see the sites you've heard about, but never taken time to see. Take pictures, talk to people, and learn some interesting stories about the area.
  6. Plan a dream vacation or your next anniversary celebration - If you're really serious about it, start talking finances and see how much you can save each month to make it happen.
  7. Fly a kite at the park - Make your own or go buy one for cheap at the dollar store.
  8. Dates don't always need to be at night. Get up early and watch a sunrise together
  9. Play Frisbee - a lot of parks have free Frisbee golf courses that you can use
  10. Make a puzzle together
  11. Play a card or board game - some of our favorite games for two are: monopoly deal and speed scrabble.
  12. Watch home videos and relive the happy and funny moments of your life together
  13. Spend time doing something you both enjoy together - Love art? Do it together. Love to read? Do it together. We both play the piano and love to play duets together.
  14. Go for a random drive, and then get out and go for a walk
  15. Browse together at a bookstore or library - create a list of books that you want to collect for your own home library someday.
  16. Write a script and create a funny video to show the kids later
  17. Return to your younger days...Play at the park, go sledding or build a snowman 
  18. Make a fire in the backyard - and cook your dinner or dessert over it.
  19. Work on a project together - A home repair or remodel project, working in the garden, folding laundry, or just something that just needs to get done.
  20. Go bird or animal watching - take pictures
  21. Go on a bike ride - this is one of our favorites
  22. Check out an origami book and fold some interesting figures
  23. Find a sandy beach and build a sandcastle
  24. Make something useful out of recylables - a toy for the kids or a work of art to display somewhere
  25. Play the penny game
  26. Have a pillow fight
  27. Check out a book or CD on a foreign language and start learning some words and phrases together
  28. Bundle up, get umbrellas and go for a walk in the rain or snow
  29. Have a loose change date - collect all your loose change in a jar and each week spend only that amount for the date.
  30. Bring your favorite treat and go watch the sunset somewhere - Watermelon is one of our favorite summer treats to enjoy on our dates.
  31. Go window shopping. Remember, don't buy, just look.
  32. Take a free community class together - often you can find free classes at hardware stores, garden centers, the library, etc.
  33. Go to the store and buy five random foods each (without showing the other person). Then blindfold each other at home and taste test the foods, trying to guess what they are.
  34. Bake cookies or your favorite treat together
  35. Go sit out in the garden or have a late night BBQ
  36. Make a map of places you've been or want to go
  37. Play basketball at the park
  38. Check out a movie at the library and watch it together after the kids go to bed - we do this one quite often as well because it's cheap and we don't have to find a babysitter.
  39. Drive the highest point in town in the early evening and watch the lights go on
  40. Go for a drive in the ritziest neighborhood around to see the beautiful homes, come back and plan your dream home
  41. Find a fountain and each throw in 10 pennies making wishes
  42. Set up a practical joke for the kids
  43. Make up a recipe for dinner using only ingredients that you already have in the house
  44. Buy a carton of ice-cream and make homemade sundaes
  45. Plan your next family vacation
  46. Take a walk down memory lane. Visit a place or places that you've gone together before as a couple. Relive the magic.
  47. Get lost in the woods. But be sure to bring a compass or gps to help you get home. :)
  48. Build something together, even if it's just out of legos.
  49. Cook a meal together for someone in need and then go deliver it
  50. Wash the car together and then have a water fight
Need more ideas? Here's a few more great lists that I found online:

My husband and I on some of our dates...
Or check out my lists for frugal family activities for different seasons. 
A lot of these would work for dates as well.

And now I'd love to hear from you. Do you have any ideas to share? What are your favorite frugal date nights? Happy Frugal Friday and I hope you have a wonderful weekend.

This week I'll be linking to some of these link parties.

3 comments:

Barb @ A Life in Balance said...

My favorite date recently - surprising my dh with a trip to a local recycled tree maze. We went at night and had a great time trying to figure out the maze.

Thanks for linking up at Fabulously Frugal Thursday! Hope to see you next time.

The Frugal Exerciser said...

Thanks for the great ideas. We do a lot of candlelight dinners. Before Sept 11 2001, we never used our dining room and now we make sure we have a least 3 date nights a month.

Ms. Figgy said...

Thank you for posting these. I showed my husband the list this evening and he is super excited, too.

We have been saving for five years for a trip to Rome this Fall, so we will definitely be using #6, 27, and 41.

~Anne

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