Be your own boss and
make money on your terms.

Fill out the form to get regular updates and exclusive content.
I can't wait to help you take control of your life and finances!

10 Budget Friendly Date Ideas

March 23, 2015

This article may contain affiliate links. Read our Disclosure Policy.



Most couples admit to arguing about money. In fact, financial stress unnecessarily dissolves too many relationships.  Creating and sticking to a budget can help prevent financial strife from occurring in your own relationship. Budgets are a wonderful tool, but if you aren’t careful, other aspects of your relationship may crumble. When setting up your monthly expenditures, make sure to allocate a portion of the budget to cover at least one date night.

You may feel like date night is completely out of the question since you are trying so hard be smart about your finances. You feel as though you can’t justify the expense of a night on the town or a trip to the movies when you are desperately trying to pay off debts. The thing to remember is that your credit card debt will always be there. Even if you neglect it entirely, it will be waiting for you. Your partner, if neglected, may not be.

Don’t neglect your credit card debts in favor a cash-spending free for all, but don’t neglect your partner either. Find inexpensive ways to spend time together so that you can maintain the health of both your finances and your relationship. To get you started, here are ten dates you can go on for $20 or less.

Picnic lunch at the park

For the cost of fresh fruit and few sandwiches, you can have a romantic afternoon. Grab an old blanket, your iTunes, and a basket of goodies to enjoy in the sunshine together.

Go hiking

Most national parks just make you pay per vehicle at the park entrance. For the price of parking, you can experience together the beautiful views that nature has to offer.

See a matinée

You can still enjoy movies in the theater together. Just go at less popular times for discount tickets.

Game night

Whether it’s just the two of you playing scrabble or you decide to invite another couple over for a round of Cards Against Humanity, games are a great way to have fun and reconnect. Throw in a glass of wine, and you have yourself a date.

Winery tour

Look for a local winery that gives tours of their vineyards and cellars. Many of them have a complimentary wine tasting afterwards.

Visit a museum

Museums are a great way to get out and explore shared interests. Whether it’s a spy museum or an art gallery, hold hands while learning about something new.


Find out when the next meteor shower hits. Dust off that picnic blanket, fill a thermos with coffee or hot cocoa, and view the beauty of the galaxy together.


Not only is camping great for working on communication (you’ve got to get that tent up somehow) nothing can beat holding hands and talking while watching a bon fire. Camping is my favorite way to reconnect.

Candle light dinner and a Redbox movie

Find a new recipe to try to cook together. Enjoy your meal by candlelight, then snuggle up to watch a new Redbox movie.

Local festivals

Most areas of the country have annual festivals to celebrate local flavors, colors, and cultures. Whether you live by the coast and have annual she-crab soup or shrimp festivals, or live in-land and enjoy cultural festivals, find out when the next one is in your area. Make sure to mark it on your calendar as a special date day. Many festivals have free admittance, so your date could be just the cost of lunch off a food truck.

Invest in your relationship

Just because you are on a budget does not mean that you have to neglect your partner. You can still enjoy each other’s company while staying mindful of your finances. Dates are about time (not money) spent together. Whether you have $20 for once a week dates, or set aside a larger amount like $100 for a monthly date, only the two of you can decide what your budget can handle. Ask your significant other to sit down and discuss how much money they feel comfortable setting aside to invest in your relationship.

Do you budget for one on one time with your partner? How often do you have date night, and what kinds of activities do you do?


The following two tabs change content below.

Kristi Muse

Kristi Muse is a freelance writer, blogger, police officer’s wife, and millennial mom to two beautiful children. She loves homeschooling, organic gardening, sustainable living, and cooking from scratch. To hire Kristi as a freelance writer or to read more about how she lives a balanced life, visit her website or follow her on twitter @moderatemuse.

Like this post?

This is just a taste! Fill out this form to get access to freebies and exclusive content to help you build your business.

15 responses to “10 Budget Friendly Date Ideas

  1. We usually have date night once each month. We trade off babysitting with our neighbors and my sister so none of usually have to pay for a babysitter. We usually use that time to get a cheap dinner and see a movie!

  2. We don’t have any family near us, so getting out without our daughter always entails paying a sitter. When we do, we use Groupon deals or coupons for the restaurants we go to. And sometimes we just stay home and watch a movie from the library after our daughter goes to bed.

    1. I hear you. It can be so hard to get out of the house without the kids. When we are able to trade babysitting, we enjoy getting to go on more traditional dates. Most of our dates usually happen at home after the kids are asleep though.

  3. I love, love, love picnics. I think another great date is just having a candlelight barbecue outside. It can be really relaxing enjoying a meal outside with candles. Get some good wine and conversation and the night could be perfect.

  4. Love these date ideas! My partner and I don’t necessarily intentionally budget for dates but we do spend a lot of the entertainment budget together. Movie and game nights are our favorite low cost dates and now that the weather is warming up we can get outside more.

  5. I found myself smiling at these ideas, Kristi. They are great – and I realize that I’ve been letting this side of things slip for the last while. Thanks for a needed reminder of what’s important : )

  6. We don’t have designated date nights… but we do try and spend some good quality time together on a regular basis. Right now our schedules are crazy opposite, but that should calm down in a couple weeks and hopefully will coincide with some warmer weather, meaning BBQs, picnics and hikes.

    1. Quality time is date time in my book! I’d gladly take quality over quantity any day. It’s great that you are able to enjoy quality time with the small moments your crazy schedules allow. Too many couples dismiss those 15 or 20 minute spaces of time instead of taking advantage of them.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *