How do you have date nights when it seems that everything blows your budget to shreds?

We talk a lot about making time together a priority, but often the typical dinner-and-a-movie date night just isn’t budget-friendly. That’s why I’m so happy to have Kristi on the blog today talking about 10 date night ideas for couples on a budget. These are some great ideas, and if you’ve been looking for something new and fun to try, she’s got you covered!

Here’s Kristi:

All the experts say you should date your spouse. Sounds easy enough, right?


I know that four kids later, there sometimes just isn’t room in the budget for fancy date nights. Sometimes, there isn’t even room in the budget for a cheap date night. So what are you supposed to do?

Well I can tell you what not to do: do not stop dating your spouse! Instead, let’s get creative and think outside of the box. I’m going to share some of my favorite date ideas that are very affordable–some are even free!–that can help you and hubby connect without hurting the budget.

1. Have a Campout

This is hands-down one of my favorite affordable date night ideas. After the kids go to bed, head out to the backyard with your spouse. Enjoy a night under the stars chatting about your day, enjoying your favorite beverage and spending some time reconnecting with each other. My husband and I always leave our phones inside to ensure we don’t get distracted.

2. Lunchtime Dates

Hiring a babysitter isn’t always a budget-friendly option, so lately we’ve been opting for lunchtime dates. If you have school-aged children, this is a great option to avoid paying the high price tag of a babysitter. Plus, as a bonus, lunch is usually a lot cheaper than dinner! Visit one of your favorite restaurants and grab a few appetizers to share, it’s more than enough to keep you full till dinner.

3. Cook Together

Cooking is such a great activity for couples. Cooking with someone else requires communication and teamwork. Make sure to plan this date a few days in advance to ensure you have all the ingredients that you’ll need. My husband and I will usually browse Pinterest a few days in advance and pick out a dinner and dessert that we want to make together. It’s always a fun activity and a great way to get some bonding time in with your spouse!

If you are looking for ways to recharge your marriage, make sure to sign up for my free 7-day email course!

4. Create An At Home Spa

I don’t know about you but I love going to the spa. However, my bank account isn’t too fond of spa visits. Sad, I know.

Thankfully, with a little creativity, you can create your own spa right in your own bathroom. Light a few candles, run a hot bubble bath and spend the evening relaxing with your husband. You can even end the evening by giving each other a nice relaxing massage!

5. Host a Games Night

Games nights are always a lot of fun. We will typically host a game night once every month or so. We invite over some of our closest friends, everyone brings a board game and an appetizer. The night is filled with good food, good company and a ton of laughter. My husband and I always have a great time!

6. Enjoy Local Activities

If you have even a small budget for a date night, check out local activities. Simply Googling “events in my area” can supply you with a pretty good list! I have found that a lot of festivals are free or extremely cheap. You can also try searching Groupon for activities in your area. Once my husband and I were able to visit Escape Room in our area for $20 total!

7. Get a Gym Membership

Okay, before you totally call me crazy, hear me out.

A lot of gyms have amazing deals on memberships AND include childcare! My husband and I used to take full advantage of the childcare all why getting in a good workout. I know it’s not your average date idea but it can be so fun! We were able to play tennis together, swim laps or hit the treadmill all while getting healthy and bonding together over an activity.

8. Stargazing

Anytime there is a meteor shower or some other spectacular astronomy event, my husband and I make it a point to find a great location and take full advantage of the show in the sky. Not only is it super romantic, but it’s very affordable (usually free)!

9. Go Out for Dessert

Isn’t it crazy how expensive going out for dinner is? The last year, we have opted for dinner at home and then going out for dessert. There is an awesome old-fashioned ice cream parlor in town that makes for a great date night location. Instead of spending $60 or more dollars on dinner, we eat at home and then spend $5 to $10 on ice cream. We always take our time to eat our dessert and make sure to get in come great conversation while doing it.

10. Recreate Your First Date

Recreating your first date might make you think outside of the box a little but it’s totally possible to do.

My husband and I had our first date at an outdoor concert venue, eight hours away from where we live. However, we get creative and do our best to recreate that magical night. We go out in the backyard, turn on the artist that was playing that night and dance the night away.

If your first date was a 5-star restaurant where you both got dressed up, recreate it at home. Cook up a nice steak dinner and put on your fanciest outfit. Recreating your first date is an awesome way to remember why you fell in love with your spouse to begin with.

For more date night ideas, make sure to visit my post on steamy date night ideas for married couples!

What are some of your favorite cheap date ideas? Let’s talk about it in the comments below!

Kristi Corrigan is the blogger behind The Classy Chapter. Her objective is to help women build the lives they’ve always wanted by providing fun and easy recipes, marriage tips to keep the spark alive and parenting tips for the stressed out mom!
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