Everyone loves doing something with their boyfriend or husband on Valentine’s Day but sometimes our wallets don’t keep up with our desires.
What can you do to have fun with your significant other, but not break the bank?
Here are thirty ideas that can be done fairly inexpensively but will still create fun memories!
30 Cheap Valentine’s Day Date Ideas
I find that the key to dating on the cheap is being flexible on timing. If you MUST go out on a certain day at a certain time, you will be limited in options.
But if you can be flexible on timing, inexpensive dates are yours for the taking! If Valentine’s Day (or our anniversary, for that matter) falls on a weekday, we will often move our celebration to the weekend. And if Valentine’s Day events book up quickly, we will move our celebration to a less crowded time.
- Plan a dinner in before going out – Eat at home before you go to a movie or a club. This is a matter of saving a few dollars, but it’s great because it allows you to do both! Even if your dinner at home is something you eat all the time, make it special with candles, dim the lights and put on some music.
- Visit a museum or other cultural attractions – This can help you save money while still doing something fun. Museums and other cultural attractions may have special programs for Valentine’s Day. Look into community theater or other offbeat theater or music locations for things you may have never seen before. Some gourmet markets offer wine or food tastings — what a fun way to try new things!
- Volunteer – Find a place where the two of you can do something nice for someone or something else. Make a whole day of it and volunteer to serve those who are hungry a meal or work with at an animal shelter. You’ll spend time together and the charity will love you too!
- Create your own in-home spa experience – Run a bubble bath and light a few candles. While this sounds a little girly, many men would appreciate it as well! Trust me!
- Arcade competition – Find a local place that has arcade games and make it a competition – the loser has to buy the next round of drinks. You can play forever on a roll of quarters! Or if your significant other is a gamer, make an effort to try and learn a game the two of you can play together.
- Karaoke – Most restaurants have karaoke nights at least once a week and they are often free. The only cost for all that fun is whatever you are drinking and maybe a little embarrassment. Select songs that are sentimental to the two of you or choose a famous duet like Islands in the Stream or Paradise by the Dashboard Light.
- See the stars – Visit a planetarium or just spread a blanket on the ground and stare at the heavens. Either way you’ll be awed by the splendor that is and have quiet time to just be together. If it’s cold outside, even better! Take a sleeping bag and cuddle up under the stars. 🙂
- Winery tours – Check out local winery or brewery tours for a fun experience on the cheap. Many times if there is a charge for the tour, it includes a bottle of wine to memorialize the tour. Samples make this a popular choice for many and it’s a great way to get out into nature as well.
- Do what the other one likes – Let’s say he likes to go and play basketball with his friends every week. Make a real effort to have him teach you some of the tricks and rules of the game. Then actually demonstrate those skills and compete against each other. If she’s into manicures, let her show you how to get that done. Then someday soon, you’ll be able to pamper her with an at-home version.
- Bowling – Bowling alleys have specials for different nights of the week – some have Lady’s Night for free and then your mate can accompany you for a minimal charge. Make sure to call around and find out if they have late night specials too for nights when they might have league bowling in the early evening.
- Get fit together – Take a fitness class together at the gym or local recreational center. Try to find something that might push both of you a bit out of your comfort zone.
- Check out a dive bar – These are always fun and great ways to make memories. Pick a place you have never been before, find out what kind of crowd hangs out there and go have fun! Check out places that might have live music entertainment.
- Take a hike – Go for a walk in the great outdoors if the weather where you are for Valentine’s Day will allow. In snowier or colder climates, consider checking with your area Department of Natural Resources and trying snowshoeing or skiing.
- Comedy Club Amateur Night – Amateur nights at comedy clubs are often loser for the clubs, so they’ll offer discounted tickets, drinks and food. Sometimes the show might not be that great, but I bet the experience will be good for a few laughs.
- Mini Golf – The Ultimate cheap date!! Miniature golf is so much fun, the music, the obstacles – everything! It’s usually fairly inexpensive, but if you can’t afford to go to a course, you can create your own at home as well. Just plan out a course that goes around your home or yard.
- Potluck with other couples – This is an awesome way to get a great meal and only have to pay for one dish. If you have friends in a similar budget situation, invite them over for Valentine’s Day and share the load. Assign a dish if you want so that you have everything cover and you provide the location with dish ware. You’ll have some cleanup, but it’s a great way to get everyone together and have fun without breaking the bank.
- Do a restaurant hop – Sometimes my husband and I like to have drinks at one place, dinner at another, and dessert somewhere else. Choose your favorite place for all three and have fun just chatting the night away with one another.
- Rent bikes – Many cities now have started programs where you can rent a bicycle for around $20 for the whole day. The ride will give you time together, exercise and you can learn more about your community.
- Rock climbing – Whether you go to an indoor gym or find someone doing outdoor climbing lessons, this is a great workout, testing both balance and grip! There’s an element of trust involved as well, allowing you to connect more deeply!
- Roller skating – Go back to being a kid and try roller skating again. The music, the lights and the skates will have you laughing – plus it’s great exercise.
- Act like a tourist – Plan a trip around your city, looking at all of the things that you would want to see if you were seeing the town like a tourist. Visit all of the cheesy spots that you wouldn’t normally go because you’ve seen them before. Take pictures at each location and have fun making new memories.
- Play a board game – Pick one of your board games and play! You can even make things more interesting by changing the rules and adding new elements – like old-fashioned strip poker. Adults only for that one!
- Rent a boat – Check with your local parks department or natural resources department and see if boat rentals are available. This is one that might not work if you are in a cooler environment this time of year, but if you can, go out for a cruise or a workout on the water.
- Go thrift shopping or antiquing – Even if you don’t buy anything, this will be fun looking at all the things you can find that used to be the trendy or hip things to buy. It’s fun to look at the clothing trends that have come and gone, especially if you have been together for a while and remember them being together.
- Take a class together – Depending on the class, this may be more than one date. Get a copy of classes that are offered to the community by your city or local college. Many are offered by real professors who are extremely knowledgeable in their field. Learn a new language or how to do something with your computer. Some cooking classes are one-time events, while others last 3-4 months.
- People watch – Go to a mall or other location where there will be a number of people coming and going. Make up stories for some of the people and just enjoy spending time with each other. You don’t have to buy a thing but it’s fun to sometimes just do nothing.
- Build a fort in the living room – Take blankets and build a fort just like the kids do. Hide yourselves away from the world, make s’mores and other campfire foods and tell stories. What better place for a little make-out session than that blanket fort in the middle of your house?!
- Bingo – Check out local churches or other organizations to see if any host bingo games, especially if there is a charity involved. Visit a casino for more competitive action. Get cards and play together!
- Dollar date – Start with a main dish, then go to the store together and each person gets $1 (or $3 – how far can you get with $1 these days?). Purchase something to go with the main dish – so if it’s pizza, maybe you get salad and garlic bread and have a complete meal on a budget.
- Make something together – Make a fancy dessert from scratch or bake a specialty pizza at home. Anything that gets you together for an extended period of time and requires teamwork is perfect.
More Date Night Ideas!
If you need extra inspiration, you should definitely download this collection of 175 date ideas for you and your husband to try (175 of them! you will NEVER run out). Some of them are so creative & romantic! You can get the full list here for less than the cost of a fast food meal!! >>