Romantic Date Ideas – Fun and Cheap Dates

Are you tired of the standard dinner and a movie date night? Looking for a romantic date idea that won't cost an arm and a leg?  Try one of these date ideas for a romantic evening the two of you will be sure to enjoy!


Wine & Cheese Under the Stars

romantic date ideas night skyOne of my favorite cheap date nights is to take my girlfriend to a beautiful lake in the desert near Phoenix and watch the stars. Throw a couple of sleeping pads, some big comfy pillows and a blanket in the back of the truck bed and you have the makings of a perfect romantic evening. To make your perfect evening even better, pack the cooler with a chilled bottle of Yellow Tail Riesling, smoked gouda , crackers, fresh fruit, and my favorite, Dove Chocolate.  Share the amazing night sky with your date, who you are snuggling with by the way, by loading a free stargazing app on your smartphone that lets you identify constellations by pointing your cellphone at the night sky.  After you have thoroughly impressed your date with your astronomical tour of the evening sky, have a glass of riesling while listening to that playlist of your dates favorite songs you put together. Did I mention that snuggling is the best way to keep warm on cool evenings?


 Take a Hike, Literally

hiking as a romantic date idea

West Fork Trail

Recently my girlfriend and I hiked the West Fork Trail in Oak Creek Canyon near Sedona Arizona.  It was a beautiful fall day and the leaves of the oaks and maples had just started to get some fall color. We packed a picnic lunch and ate on a large boulder along Oak Creek and enjoyed each other's company. A hike is technically a very long walk so you should be holding hands as often as you can and water breaks are a convenient opportunity for more touching of the lips, that would be kissing. Be sure to bring a camera and take lots of pictures that you can share in a thoughtful text message down the road!


Watch a Sunset Together

romantic date ideasSunsets are one of life's great joys and are made even more special when you can share them with someone close to you. Planning where to view a sunset is critical however. For Christmas last year I promised my girlfriend I would take her to California so that we could share a sunset over the Pacific Ocean together. We decided on Santa Barbara and were filled with anticipation as we setup our beach chairs for the perfect vantage point for viewing our magical sunset together, you know where this is going don't you? As the sun began to fall towards the horizon it quickly became apparent something was horribly wrong, the Pacific Ocean was in the wrong place!  We still enjoyed a magical sunset and chuckle together as the sun set over the northern Santa Barbara coastline.  The moral of this story? Being thoughtful may include some extra planning so don't forget the little details like the angle of the setting sun in relation to the California coastline. Santa Barbara actually faces South in case you were wondering!


Eat In

romantic date ideas backyard diningNext to snuggling and hugging, eating ranks high on the list for romantic activities for good reason.  Not only is it a great fun and frugal activity to share with your date, there is scientific data showing that certain foods increase feelings of pleasure and calmness.  Consuming foods high in fat cause the body's pituitary gland to secrete endorphins otherwise called endogenous opioids which give the feelings of pain relief and pleasure.  My girlfriend and I enjoy being together in the kitchen and helping each other prepare meals.  Not only is it much cheaper than eating out, it can be a great way to spend a romantic evening with your date. To create a romantic meal takes a little planning but is sure to be noticed and appreciated by your date. When the weather permits, set a table outside on the patio and use the good stemware and china. Add a good bottle of wine, lots of candles, and some of your favorite music to make your romantic evening memorable.


Take in a Drive In Movie

romantic date ideas drive in movieA drive in movie has all the makings for a perfect romantic date. Something to think about is where to park. There is an inverse relationship between the distance from the movie screen and the degree of romance. The front row is the most unromantic location in the drive in and is typically where you will find families with children running around with glow sticks, not the ideal setting for a romantic date now is it?  I would recommend parking towards the back of the drive in theatre where there will most likely be fewer families. All you need now are some of your favorite snacks and a comfy blanket and pillow for a great date night!

Readers: What romantic date ideas would you like to share? What was the best cheap date you ever had?


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13 Responses to Romantic Date Ideas – Fun and Cheap Dates

  1. Leticia Garcia 03/04/2017 at 11:16 am #

    Hey we’re planing on having a bed truck date. I cannot find a good, quite and private place. ( we need some privacy… ) Does anyone have any places to go in San Diego ?? Thank you.

  2. Paul 03/08/2015 at 10:18 pm #

    Love the drive-in! Great memories as a kid and we still get a kick out of going!

  3. Michelle 03/08/2015 at 10:25 am #

    We have a really cheap drive in movie theater. It is a bit of a drive, but totally worth it.

  4. Paul 11/01/2014 at 7:20 am #

    We just attended a Star Gazing Event in a nearby park that was put on by a local astronomy club. It was free and we had a great time!

  5. Jayson @ Monster Piggy Bank 10/31/2014 at 4:49 pm #

    Those are lovely. I and my wife have done eating it and hiking but not having wine and cheese under the sun. Surely we’ll do it with telescopes in hands as my wife is a bit of a fan of heavenly bodies.

  6. How To Save Money 10/20/2014 at 5:25 am #

    You can also do a cooking date over a bottle of wine! Makes it more intimate and save you bucks from expensive restaurants out there.

  7. Mike 10/15/2014 at 9:08 am #

    One of our favorites is to drive around the city on a slow Sunday afternoon and take couple’s selfie pics with famous landmarks, events, people, etc in the background.

  8. Paul 10/14/2014 at 9:21 pm #

    We have a great chaise that we lie on, watch the night sky and unwind at the end of the day. It is such a nice way to spend time with my girlfriend!

  9. Paul 10/14/2014 at 9:17 pm #

    I go camping with my daughter every summer. We always look forward to spending a week together and camping lets us disconnect the technology and reconnect.

  10. Autumn @ The Barefoot Budgeter 10/14/2014 at 6:01 pm #

    I love these ideas – I’d take any one of these over dinner out and a movie any day. Hiking is our favorite date – you just can’t beat a day of fresh air, exercise, and no distractions. I also write the dates of meteor showers on the calendar and we grab a blanket and a bottle of wine and sit in the backyard. Super romantic and all it costs is a bottle of wine.

  11. Money Beagle 10/14/2014 at 7:55 am #

    We do a lot of camping during the summertime on the west side of the state, on lake Michigan. It’s always a goal that my wife and I try to take in at least one sunset per trip. Very nice!


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