Frugal Living,  Lifestyle,  Money

19 Cheap & Frugal Date Ideas That Are Actually Good

Reading Time: 5 minutes

When trying to stick to a budget and your financial independence journey, occasions like Valentines Day or even date night can feel a little stressful. You don’t need to cave into peer pressure and do these overly expensive lavish things to show your partner that you love them. A nice meal and a trip to the cinema (including drinks and snacks) could end up costing you over £75.00, plus anything gifts you buy each other. It’s insane.

You don’t need to bankrupt yourself to show others how you feel and if you think you do … maybe you’re not with the best person for you.

Emma Woodhouse

Here are my 19 cheap and frugal date ideas

Going Out

1.Go out for breakfast or brunch. A large breakfast at Wetherspoons will cost you £5.29pp, and that includes a drink. So a meal out for two will only set you back just over £10.00.

2. Rent a rowing boat. It’ll be funny as hell, especially if you end up rowing in circles, which is something I would end up doing, and you can bring a picnic. 

3. Go for a walk. Visiting a local park and walking in the country is not only a romantic date idea but also great for your spirit. 

4. Go for a run together. This might sound like an odd one, and I used to think that. My boyfriend told me that he had a running date as the first date with a girl before he met me. If someone asked me to go for a run on a first date, I would say hell no. I can’t look all pretty sweating and gasping for breath. But if you have been with your partner a while, I think it’s a lovely thing to do together. You can encourage and motivate each other. For an added bonus, once you’ve completed your run, you can go out for breakfast together. That’s two ideas in one!

5. Go camping. Need a little quiet time away from the kids? Camping can cost as little as £15 at a campsite per night. 

6. Visit an open garden. Visiting an open garden is a lovely thing to do, especially in the Spring and Summer. You get to walk around a strangers garden for free and get inspiration for your own garden. 

7. Go feed the ducks. Spending time in nature is always good for the soul. You can buy a bag of seeds for as little as 50p.

8. Go to the cinema. Compare The Market offer 2-4-1 cinema tickets for a whole year when you buy a qualifying product through their website. This could be car or home insurance, travel insurance, switching your tv and broadband provider and even switching energy suppliers. There are so many products to choose from  

9. Go out for a meal with meerkat movies (2-4-1). Depending on where you live in the UK, you will have access to countless restaurants that offer 2-4-1 on starters, mains and desserts using Meerkat Meals. Another alternative to Meerkat Meals is buying a tastecard

A quick tip:  if you buy a tastecard through Top Cashback you will receive up to £8.00 cashback. Tastecard currently has a promotion on where you can try it out for 60 days for just £1.00. Imagine all the yummy low-cost meals you could have within that 60-day window. Once the 60 days are over, you can choose to renew or cancel. 

Current Cashback from

Staying in together

1.Cook your better half breakfast in bed. There’s nothing more romantic than waking up to breakfast in bed. and guys you will get a lot of points from your special lady if you do this … trust me.

2. Make a meal together. Cooking a meal with your better half is a great way to spend quality time together. You can try a new recipe or split who cooks which course and you can surprise each other. 

3. Have a floor picnic. You don’t need good weather to have a floor picnic. You can have one on the floor of your living room. 

4. Make cocktails together. It’s SO much cheaper than going out to a cocktail bar. 

5. Have a BBQ. Weather permitting, depending on where in the world you live.

6. Strip poker. Fun and a little naughty. 

7. Binge watch a series on Netflix or Amazon Prime. Gosh, there are so many series available on Netflix and Amazon Prime. You will have hours of fun readily available for a minimum of £8.99 per month. Already cheaper than going to the cinema.

Quick Tip: To get a 30 day FREE trial on Amazon Prime Click Here (UK)

Double Dating

1.Have a dinner party – Come Dine With Me style cooking or everyone brings a dish. Everyone can either chip in £10.00, and you buy the ingredients and cook, or everyone invited to the dinner party brings a dish for a selected course. You will get a three-course dinner for a fraction of the cost.

2. Play on the Wii, e.g., Wii bowling, golf etc. I do this regularly when other couple friends. It’s such a laugh and a great way to spend a Saturday night. 

3. Play board games. OMG, my current fave is Articulate. We had friends round at the weekend and OMG, it was so much fun. A complete icebreaker as well.

Remember you don’t need to spend a lot of money to have a fun and memorable date night. Remember these suggestions are cheap and sticking to your budget if the number 1 goal. So doing something cheap and fun doesn’t have to be boring. I have offered plenty of fun and guilt-free suggestions.

Looking to start a budget? Simply download our FREE Budget Template or sign up to YNAB if you are looking for another alternative.

Let me know in the comments your favourite low-cost date night activity.

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