Cheap dates. Once upon a time those 2 words were used disparagingly to describe a mean spirited person, one whose arms were shorter than their pockets, or a horrible scuzzy venue. Nowadays, however, with most people’s finances a little tighter, a cheap date has become, for many, a necessity. So how do you have fun cheap dates without looking like you’re related to Scrooge? Try these inexpensive dating ideas while recession dating.

Happy Hours. If you want your date to include alcohol, why not research the happy hours of local bars, clubs, restaurants, etc. This is one way to be still able to drink cocktails, or other expensive drinks without it killing your budget. Just remember to stop drinking at the end of the hour. With a bit of research you may be able to find several different places to drink on various nights of the week.

Here’s how the English approach cheap dating – not bad…!

Cheap Days. Many venues, including cinemas, often have a cheaper day of the week, often a Monday or Tuesday. This can be a great way to see a new release movie for a little less, or have two of you eat for the price of one. Best of all, even those these days are traditionally quiet evenings, the bargain component ensures that these places are often bustling, so there won’t be a lack of a crowd or atmosphere.

Free Concerts, etc. Those folk currently enjoying summer should check out the local outdoor festivals. Those who live in bigger cities or regions should be able to find free or subsidized concerts, performances, outdoor cinemas, and other events that make for excellent and cheap dating ideas.

cheap dating with bike and picnic

cheap dating with bike and picnic

Picnics are always cheap fun dates with a little preparation. The more you cook or prepare yourself, the less the cost. Perhaps both of you can bring something? One could bring the bubbly, the other the cake or sweets. One could bring a roasted chicken, and the other a salad. You get the idea. Even if only one of you brings the provisions, this will still be a lot less costly than a meal in a restaurant or cafe. Try a little harder for a special location, or time of the day. For example, watching a sunrise or sunset over the ocean or lake.

Find the child within. The very best cheap dates can often be those that bring back happy childhood memories or experiences. Everybody likes to let their hair down once in a while, and lose the stuffy grown up demeanor. How long since you visited a museum (many of them are now interactive), an art gallery, or an oceanarium? Brush off your kite for a free activity on a blustery day. If you live in the right conditions, grab an old taboggan, snow board, or go and make a snow man or woman. Not only will you have some fun, but you are bound to drop a few blood pressure points at the same time. (I did think about suggesting playing doctors and nurses…..)

Bike rides, walking, and bush walking are all inexpensive dating ideas that can help get the heart pounding. Depending on the exertion level, you may or may not have breath left to talk at the same time. If you are planning a date involving exercise it is probably a great idea to mention this in advance. No-one wants to be caught out dressed inappropriately. Nothing worse to kill a date than expecting a girl to go trekking through the undergrowth in her best jeans or Jimmy Choo knock-offs.

Remember! Just because you are on a budget doesn’t mean that your date should have to foot the bill for everything. Always be sure to offer to pay for your share.

There is a huge difference between being careful with your money and being down right miserly. No-one wants to spend time with someone who is genuinely mean spirited. Cheap romantic dates are not an oxymoron, they just need a little preparation and research. A little creativity can have you going on champagne dates with a beer budget. Don’t forget, there is no shame in living within your means in these times.