100 FREE or Inexpensive Date Ideas

Believe me, I know how hard it is to get out on the town with your husband once the little ones come along. Not only is your time limited, but so is your wallet! But it’s very important to nourish your relationship with your spouse, SO MAKE TIME! And if scrounging up enough money is a challenge (as it is for many of us), here are some free or very inexpensive date ideas:

  1. Thrift Shop Date

Go to a local thrift shop, and allot a small amount of money for each of you to spend. Then split up, being sure to avoid each other, and find something to buy for each other with the money you have.

It could be something silly, meaningful, or something you think the other person would really like. When you are finished shopping exchange your gifts somewhere else.

Some fun alternatives

  • Try to find something that describes how you feel about your spouse (i.e. a candle – “you light up my life”, etc.)
  • Search for something silly that your spouse has to wear in a public place for the rest of the date.

2. Volunteer Together

Help serve at a homeless shelter, or find some other way to volunteer together in your community. You will have a lot to talk about on your way home. Your local newspaper or it’s website may have a list of volunteering opportunities in your area.

3. Popcorn and A Movie

Utilize your local library and borrow movies for free. Or, check out your local Redbox Kiosk, and rent a movie for $1 a night (plus, sign up here and get a free rental). Pop some popcorn, pour some soda, turn off the lights and enjoy!

4. Mad Lib Movie Night

If you can’t seem to find a good movie to watch (it seems like there are fewer and fewer family-friendly movies out there today), do not despair, there’s still fun to be had! Find a movie you’ve seen a billion times, pop it in, then hit the mute button . Take turns speaking for the characters in the movie, making up your own story line. Have fun, and be creative. This can get pretty hilarious!!

5. Coin Flip Date

Go to a historical part of town, or into the city where there are lots of little shops. Start on a corner and flip a coin. “Heads” walk right, “Tails” walk left. Go wherever the coin leads, with no plan at all. Have fun window shopping and sight-seeing. Learn more about each other by the types of stores and places that interest your partner.

6. Guessing Game Date

Before your evening out, go take pictures of places to go, or things to do on your date: picnic, restaurant, sport or activity. Get the pictures developed and seal them individually in separate envelopes.

You could also try to find pictures of these places in magazines- or even online- to cut out, instead of getting photos printed.

At the beginning of the date, let your spouse pick one of the envelopes, and go wherever the picture is of. Continue opening the envelopes one by one. Let the pictures lead you through your night!

7. Follow Them Date

Go to a busy public place. Pick one person to follow, and go wherever they go. Once you can’t follow that person any more, pick another person to follow. You’re sure to have lots of laughs trying to be discreet while keeping up with your random guides!

8. An Evening Picnic

Find a quiet place to go, maybe a flower covered field, a sandy beach, or an empty park. Pack a simple snack; sparkling grape juice, cheese, fruit, chocolates. Bring along a portable CD player with some soft music to relax to, and a cozy blanket to lay on.

Also bring along some candles and matches. Sit, enjoying your time with each other. Feed each other snacks. Share your thoughts, your dreams. And when the sun drops low, and the stars come out, light the candles and cuddle in each other’s arms. You may find yourself drawn to one another like when you were first dating.

9. Play Together

Playing a sport together is good exercise, and lots of fun (just don’t get too competitive)! Fun ideas: Tennis, Soccer, Basketball, Frisbee, or tossing around a Football. If you don’t own any sports equipment, see if you could borrow from somebody.

10. Kids Play

Just because you are adults now, doesn’t mean that you can’t have fun together at the park. Race each other down the slide, play tag, or make-believe. See who can swing the highest, or jump off the farthest. Laugh, and talk about what you liked to do when you were little kids. This is a great way to get to know more about each other. But please make sure there are no kids there when you go!

11. Enjoy Nature

If you live near the mountains, go for a hike, rock climbing, splashing in a creek, or just exploring. If you live in the city, find a nature trail to walk together, or ride bikes. If you are lucky enough to live near the ocean, take a walk along the beach, hunting for seashells or something.

12. Board Games

Break out the dusty old games in your closet and play together! (Do try to let your husband win occasionally though!)

13. Climb A Building

(I have a hilarious story to go along with this, but I don’t think I’ll go there.) Go to the top of a building in the city on a clear night and look out at all of the beautiful lights. Hint: Go to a tall hotel and see if you can find a way out onto the roof. *grin*

14. Acting Out

Spend the whole evening out together acting like characters from a play, book, or movie that you both enjoy.

15. Find A Nearby Ghost Town

Learn a little of the history of the place. See if you can find any relics or treasures in the dirt.

16. Camping

Even if it’s just in your backyard, this is fun to do! If you don’t have a tent, see if you can find one to borrow. Pack pillows, blankets, music…whatever. If possible, build a bonfire and roast marshmallows.

17. Spontaneous Generosity

This is an interesting idea. Give yourselves a few one dollar bills ($5 or something), walk down a busy street and randomly hand out the bills. Entertain yourselves with the stranger’s reactions of protest or thanks, and be a blessing to someone in the process!

18. Fly Kites

If you don’t have a kite, make one together!! Then go have fun seeing if you can get the kite to fly, or see whose flies the best!

19. Free Local Events

Look in your local paper, or on it’s website in the entertainment section for free events to attend. In the summer time especially there is usually a lot going on.

20. Be Strangers

Show up separately to a public place. Pretend that you’ve never met. At first you go your own ways, but after a while you start to notice each other. Make eye contact, smile, flirt. Act like you would if you were first meeting. You’ll have a blast!

21. Kidnapping

Blind fold your date and take them to an undisclosed location. No peeking! Have a fun event planned for the two of you. A good one is to have a tent all set up somewhere private, and once you’ve kidnapped your spouse and driven to your destination, lead them through the woods still blindfolded, until you reach the camp site. They will have no idea what you are up to!

22. Bookstore Date

If you love to read, this is a great date for you! Peruse books together. Sit down and read comic books or look at pictures from around the world. Get a coffee or latte at the coffee shop. Often bookstores host live folk music, poetry readings, and lectures all for free. I know Master’s Loft have a variety of activities – if you have one in your area you should check them out.

23. College Events

Often colleges have free events you can attend such as lectures, music recitals, art exhibits, and even plays.

24. Truth or Dare

It doesn’t really matter where you go for this date. The fun is in the game!

25. Letter Hunt

For your date, take a camera with you. Go into town, or somewhere where there is a lot of architectural interest. Try to find architectural features that look like letters. See how many pictures of different letters you can find. You can try to find letters to spell out a specific word, or see what letters you find and try to make a word out of them. This project may take a few dates to find lots of letters. When you have taken all of the pictures you want, get them developed in black and white, and frame them spelling out your word, as a reminder of your fun time together.

26. Memory Album

Take crazy pictures together at random places throughout the day. Get the pictures developed at a 1 hr. photo, and go home and make a memory album of the day, to forever remember the fun you had together.

27. Indoor Picnic

If it’s gloomy outside, be creative! Make a nice indoor picnic for you and hubby to enjoy!

28. Lake Date

If you live nearby a lake, take some bread and go feed the ducks. Or, if you have fishing poles, go fishing if it’s free.

29. Visit a Museum

Sometimes, museums have specials when they offer low cost, or free admissions, especially during certain holidays. Check out your local museum’s website, or give them a call, to see what they may have to offer.

30. Arcade

Give yourselves a few dollars to blow on arcade games. You’ll have lots of fun, and $5 worth of quarters may last longer than you think! Hint: Chuck E Cheese is only $.25 per game! And often their website has printable coupons for free tokens with food purchase. Win lots of tickets and buy each other a prize at the end of your date.

31. Watch a Sunset

Go up on your roof, drive to an open field and sit on the trunk of your car, find somewhere to go and watch a beautiful sunset together.

32. Explore A Local Flea Market

Walk around together, browsing and admiring crafts. You may even stumble upon a great deal!

33. Ice Cream Date

Go out together for ice cream. Share a sundae, or find a coupon for B1G1 Free treats!!

34. Go To a Concert

You don’t have to spend a ton of money to enjoy live music. Lots of towns host regular musical events. It’s not tough to find a free concert here or there!

35. Head to a Local Food Market

Graze on free samples at a food festival or local food market! Sometimes, you might have to pay a simple entry fee in order to get in – but it will be much cheaper than going out to eat at a restaurant.

36. Go Roller Skating

There’s nothing wrong with dusting off that old pair of roller skates! Head out for a roll around town or go to a nearby skate park. You can go ice skating in the winter, if you prefer.

37. Build a Backyard Water Park

I love this idea! You can set up a slip ‘n slide in your backyard or simply turn on the sprinklers. It will cool you off and is a great way to have some fun together, too.

38. Check Out Open Houses

You don’t have to be buying an expensive house in order to enjoy this fun date idea! Get all dressed up – put on your fanciest attire and head to some of the ritziest listings for open houses. It’s fun to dream and see what’s out there, too! If houses aren’t your thing, you could also go out and test drive your ream car!

39. Play Twister

Twister is incredibly fun, even for grown-ups! It can really reignite the romance, too. To make things even more hilarious, consider putting some paint colors on the circles. You’ll get covered in paint, but you won’t be able to stop laughing.

40. Go On a Tour of a Winery or Brewery

You might spend a little bit of money on this one if you choose to partake in beverages beyond the free samples, but many local wineries and breweries offer free samples with tours. You can stroll through the wineries and breweries and decide from there whether you want to splurge on a bottle of wine or pint of beer.

41. Find a Trivia Night

There’s nothing more fun than showing off to your sweetie how smart you are! Impress your date by heading to a local trivia night – it’s free and often, there are prizes for the top teams, too.

42. Reminisce

This is a fun date night idea for couples who have been married a while. Dust off those old photo albums and flip through them. Even if you haven’t been together for long, you can still have a blast trading pics from your past with your honey.

43. Check Out Local Landmarks

Do you really know the history of your local area? It doesn’t matter how long you have lived somewhere – there are probably still landmarks you haven’t unlocked yet. Spend a day visiting some of your city’s most popular landmarks. You’ll enjoy spending time with each other and you may learn something in the process, too!

44. Have a Massage Night

This is one of those more sensual date night ideas, but it’s one that you’re sure to love. Light a few candles, break out the massage oil, and give each other nice, long back rubs.

45. Do something seasonal

Whether it’s carving pumpkins or hiding Easter eggs, there’s something fun to be found in all four seasons.

46. Make a time capsule.

47. Go on your first date. What did the two of you do for your first date? Try to recreate it!

48. Visit the local animal shelter. Pet the animals or see if they’ll let you take them for a walk.

49. Go stargazing. Bonus points if you make and name your own constellations.

50. Go to an open mic night. An improv night is fun, too!

51. Paint a room together. Been meaning to paint a room in your house? That would be af un date idea – oh, and clothing optional.

52. Go to cheap sporting events.

Often, you can find inexpensive tickets for sale online at the last moment – but you can also check out local high school or college games for free, too.

53. Write love letters to each other.

54. Take a dance class together.

55. Give each other haircuts – if you dare!

56. Head to your local bar and cheer for a team (just try not to drink too much – the costs will add up if you do!).

57. Do a jigsaw puzzle.

58. Climb a tree.

59. Wash the car together.

60. Watch funny YouTube videos.

61. Play a game of poker (or strip poker – wink wink).

62. Check social media for free events going on around town.

63. Do some yoga together. Many studios offer free yoga classes! You don’t have to be good, either – in fact, the worse you are at yoga, the funnier it is.

64. Play farmer’s market ABCs – see who can find something that starts with every letter of the alphabet first.

65. Build a blanket fort. See if you can stay all day in there!

66. Make breakfast in bed.

67. Play a game of frisbee.

68. Get lost on purpose – and then try to find your way back.

69. Hit up happy hours. Hit up happy hours around town and look for deals on appetizers. You can check out a few places to make a complete dinner out without breaking the bank.

70. Take a free class at your local library or community center – pick something that neither of you are good at.

71. Go to a psychic and have your tarot cards read.

72. Go fruit picking. Many orchards offer free fruit picking where you can pick your fruit and just pay for the fruits you go home with.

73. Have a sandcastle building competition. Get strangers to vote on the best one!

74. Take advantage of coupon sites. There are all kinds of coupon sites out there (like Groupon) that regularly advertise steep discounts on various outings.

75. Go people watching. You can even make it into a game of people watching bingo!

76. Bake a cake together – and make sure you frost it, too!

77. Make a mixed tape together.

78. Build something together.

79. Go ghost hunting – check out local hotspots.

80. Have a yard sale.

81. Go bowling. Bowling is inexpensive in most places.

82. Have an at-home karaoke night, and pick songs for each other instead of your own.

83. Have a scavenger hunt. You can do this around town or right in your own backyard.

84. Go to Costco’s or Sam’s Club – and make a whole meal out of the samples!

85. Play some old school video games. If you have an old video game console collecting dust, break it out and spend an afternoon playing Mario Kart, Pac Man, and other old-school classics.

86. Give geocaching a try.

87. Cook at home. Try some new recipes! There’s nothing more romantic than a relaxed dinner at home. You could also turn it into a Chopped competition and see who can make the best dishes.

88. Work out together. There’s nothing sexier than working up a sweat while you’re working toward a better relationship, too!

89. Make your own slingshot and then load them with marshmallows for an intense at-home fight!

90. Have a spa night. Have some home treatments like exfoliating face and body scrubs, foot massages, and bubble baths.

91. Hit golf balls at your local driving range.

92. Play in the snow. Build a snowman, have a snowball fight, or build a snowman – whatever the case may be, playing in the snow is a great way to reignite your inner child and spend time with your beloved!

93. Go yarn bombing.

94. Take an online relationship test. The best ones are those that help you learn more about your languages of love!

95. Try to break a world record.

96. Go for a walk. Take a long stroll around your neighborhood at night.

97. Pray or meditate together.

98. Pick a new television show to watch – and then have a binge-watching marathon where you watch an entire season.

99. Play hide and seek in a corn field. You could also play in the woods – you’re sure to have a blast.

100. Just stay in bed together…all day! And no, it doesn’t have to be dirty. But it will definitely be relaxing. Ultimately, you don’t need any fancy activities or lots of money to enjoy each other’s company – you just need each other.

Well, I hope these suggestions have inspired you to get out and have some fun with your honey. I sure am ready to get out of the house and enjoy some one on one time with my sweetheart!

free date ideas Pinterest image

updated 06/15/2020 by Rebekah Pierce

8 thoughts on “100 FREE or Inexpensive Date Ideas”

  1. neat post…lots of great ideas. One thing I like to do with DH is go grocery shopping. Silly, huh? Well, with 4 kids 10 and under time alon with DH is rare. We like to have grandma baby sit while we go out for a quick bite to eat (with a coupon of course) and pick up groceries. We can walk up and down the aisles looking to our hearts content with out the little ones going crazy. Talk about multi-tasking 😉

  2. This list is great! It’s so ironic becuase I was actually going to research free or inexpensive date ideas and I came upon this by mistake. I’m very excited to share these with my husband! Thank you so much.

  3. I love #21 with the tent. Maybe I’ll print it out and leave it laying around for my husband to find. Wait, that’s right, subtle never works. Maybe I’ll hand it to him and say, you should do this sometime! And #4 sounds like fun too. Great list!

  4. I love these ideas. I am so glad you stopped by my blog and shared with me your site. I really am going to try some of these out. I wish my husband would read Twilight because it would be totally fun to do “Acting Out ” and he play edward. I know, it sounds so childish, but man, does it sound fun and sexy!

  5. Thanks! I was looking for something new and creative to do with my hubby for Valentine’s Day. These ideas are great. Now, how do I choose? 😉


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