12 Creative Date Night Ideas for Any Budget

12 Creative Date Night Ideas for Any Budget

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It’s been over 10 years now since I met my husband, David. That blows my mind! Sometimes it feels like we’ve gone on every date in the book. As fun as a dinner date can be, we like to mix it up with more creative date night ideas now and then to keep things interesting. We have date night at least once per week if not more, because we get creative and don’t need to spend a lot of money! Β Here are some unique date night ideas that you can incorporate into your week that won’t break the bank.

[related:Β Six Important Lessons for a Rock-Solid Relationship]

12 Creative Date Night Ideas for Any Budget

1. Recreate your first date

David and I met when we were fresh out of high school, so our first date was very simple. We met at Starbucks and then cruised around trying to get lost. We ended up finding a cute little park where we played on the swing sets together and took a nature walk. To this day, we still create our first date, 10 years later!

2. Float down the river

For a lazier afternoon, buy or rent a tube and float down the river together. Make sure you bring lots of water and sunscreen, and reapply frequently because you will get burnt otherwise! We like to bring a Bluetooth speaker and some adult beverages with us and just float. It’s a nice way to take in the beautiful weather together in a unique way. We bought this two-person tube on Amazon and it has been amazing!


3. Camp in your backyard

You don’t have to go very far for this date! Set up a tent in your backyard and grab some marshmallows and hot dogs to cook over the fire. Rent a projector from your library and set it up outside for an outdoor movie theater.

4. Be a tourist in your town

If you’ve lived in the same place for a while, date night might feel boring. Check out reviews for things to do in your town. Pick out all the tourist attractions recommended online and go check them out! When you’re done, go home and leave some funny reviews of what you discovered.

5. Buy a disposable camera and have a field day

Go buy a disposable camera. Yup, those little yellow Kodak ones, and yup, they still make them. You can find them at drugstores or in the checkout line of bigger stores like Target. Go out and take a bunch of pictures of the things you see, then go get them developed. Kick back and look through your masterpieces together!

6. Take a class together

Check out GrouponΒ and find a fun class to take together! I’m still a big fan of painting classes, especially over a bottle of wine, but we’ve also talked about wanting to take a pottery class before. If money is tight, teach each other something you’re good at!

7. Go on a picnic

Summer means it’s the perfect time to pack a lunch and go for a picnic! Start by making some amazing sandwiches. Sourdough bread is one of my favorites. Pack up some snacks and head out! We like to go kayak picnicking!

8. Check out a bar-cade

If you haven’t been to a bar-cade yet, you are missing out! A new one opened up in our city and it is packed with retro video games. Think Pacman and Frogger. Get a flight of craft beer and head out for some old-fashioned gaming together.

9. Support your local artists

Head out to your local art show, gallery, theater, or craft fair! Dress up a little and bring some cash to support your local artists. Get an ice cream cone and enjoy some live music while you’re there! If you go to a play, stick around to get autographs from the cast.

10. Go geocaching

Remember how big geocaching used to be? Download a geocaching app on your phone or print up some instructions online. Make sure you bring some tokens to stick in the treasure box when you find it! David and I found some tiny dinosaurs from the dollar store that are no bigger than a dime. To make it extra fun and a little spooky, try going geocaching at night.

11. Go to the pet store or animal shelter and play with the pets

Animal shelters need lots of love. Head to your local pet store first and buy some items on your animal shelter’s wish list. Some shelters have specific food requirements so you may want to look into that first. Check out all the fish, turtles, and gerbils while you’re there! Second stop: your local shelter. Bring in your bag of goodies for the animals, head into the cat room, and have fun!

12. Buy a new board or card game

It’s surprisingly hard to find games that are created for two people nowadays. Some of our favorites are Exploding Kittens (from the creator of The Oatmeal) and Pandemic. Exploding Kittens is a game we love to play when we need a good laugh. It’s quick to play and so original. Pandemic takes more thought and creativity, as it is a collaborative game. That’s right– you work together. We have only ever one the game one time! You can buy our go-to games from Amazon below!


What are some of your favorite date night ideas? Let me know in the comments!

12 Creative Date Night Ideas for Any Budget

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  • I love your idea about floating down the river. That sounds like so much fun and it’s something very out of the ordinary- at least for us πŸ™‚

  • Alissa Carpenter

    On our list this summer is to camp in our backyard. We did it last year and it was a ton of fun and we could use our own bathroom!

  • Leslie Morrison

    We have a local touristy craft beer tour that my husband and I are dying to go on! All of these are great ideas! Thanks!

  • I love #1 and #5! So sweet πŸ™‚

  • I love the bar-code idea – had never thought of that, nor heard of them! These ideas are great – especially your recreated first date! SO CUTE πŸ™‚

  • Rachel Casey

    This is a post I’ve been needing! Me and my other half are saving for a holiday so don’t have much extra cash, and trying to come up with cheap date night ideas that don’t involve just staying in and watching a movie is so hard! I love the board game idea. And I’m intrigued by the idea of geocaching. Thanks for this πŸ™‚

    • You’re welcome! I know how it is to not have a lot of money to spend. We try to get as creative as possible. I’ve found that anything can be a date if you let it!

  • Lili Simmelink

    Loved your ideas! Many of them are very simple and I never thought of them! Thanks for sharing! I’ll use a few πŸ’œ
    Lili x

  • Mackenzie

    These are the cutest ideas!!! I’m definitely going to do some of these this summer. I’ve never heard of geocaching before but it totally sounds like an epic treasure hunt!


  • I love all of these ideas! Thanks for sharing!

  • Corey Wheeland

    I love the disposable camera idea – so retro πŸ™‚

  • These sounds like fun dates! I especially love the idea of recreating the first date!

  • Ayanna

    Great date ideas!! I am rarely a tourist in my own town unless I have guest in town. This will definitely be my next date night activity with my hubby.

  • I was just talking to my partner about doing a date night sometime soon. I really love this list! I am going show him this list!

  • Robin

    I love these ideas!! I love that your first date was in a Starbucks because my husband and I first met at a Starbucks – I was a barista, and he was a customer! We’ve been back into that Starbucks a few times in the many years since then, but I’ve always been rushing out before any old coworkers or customers could recognize me. 7 years later, I think it’s safe for us to return to recreate our first meeting in a way!

  • Elaine Faessler Stores

    Great ideas. Cannot wait to try geocaching. Keep hearing about it but have never done it. Thanks!

  • Bailey

    I absolutely adore the idea of recreating our first date.

  • I love these ideas!! I love going on picnics with my husband!

  • Such great suggestions for dates! I need to be more intentional at making time for dates more often!

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  • Lynn White

    These are great ideas. Love the bar-cade!

  • These are the best ideas! We used to love floating down the river but we haven’t done it in a few years so I think we might need to add that to the list for summer!

  • Maya Maceka

    Amanda this is such a sweet post! My boyfriend and I just tried geocaching last week and had loads of fun. Would highly recommend it for other couples! πŸ™‚

  • Great list !!! I love being a tourist in my own town. I love finding different things to do but also being so grateful for what is always right there too. πŸ™‚

    • That’s a really good point! I’ve lived in towns where there was literally nothing to do, so I totally appreciate what you mean about being grateful for what’s there.

  • skim82

    such fun date ideas, and affordable. thanks!

  • Love these! Totally sharing some with my boyfriend!


  • Celeste Wright

    I love the idea of recreating your first date. That is so romantic!


    • It’s super fun! A lot of people have commented that and you guys are all inspiring me to recreate my first date again πŸ™‚

  • Recreating your first date is such a fun idea!

  • Hannah Palamara

    Oh my gosh I LOVE the idea of recreating your first date! I so badly want to do this now with my husband!

  • Shani Ogden

    These are some really cute ideas! I love the animal shelter one but my husband wouldn’t do that one because he’s allergic to cats. πŸ™

  • Oyinkan Ogunleye

    Recreating your first date is very cute and I love the idea of being a tourist in your own town. It helps you learn something new about your city!

  • I’m always looking for new date ideas! Love these!