How to Go on a Cheap Date (Without Looking Like a Cheap Date)
Regardless of your gender or sexual preferences, it’s a truth universally acknowledged that dating is a costly game. Firstly, you’ve got to dress to impress, then you need to pick a location which wows the other person, and lastly, there’s the whole business of who picks up the check. Oh wait, and the potential taxi home…ouch.
At times, it can feel as if a lack of funds is responsible for everything unsatisfactory in your life, but we’re here to tell you that a poor (literally) dating life can be resolved with a few quick money-saving tips! Worried about coming across as a penny-pinching loser? Don’t sweat it, we’ve got some fool-proof tips that will make you a cheap date pro, without the other person ever realizing…
How to Impress a Date When You’re Broke
- Search online for coupons and deals that to help cut costs if you’re eating out at a restaurant. Just remember to get the check while your date is in the bathroom!
- Set expectations. Don’t take your date anywhere too fancy where you would be required to wear expensive clothes or spend a lot. We’re not suggesting you take your date to Wendy’s, but you needn’t take them to a Michelin star restaurant either—often these high-end places make people feel nervous, so a nice but cozy choice will make for a much more relaxed (read, romantic) atmosphere.
- Be clean. Sounds odd and maybe obvious, but even if you don’t have the latest fashion or newest trendy haircut, cleanliness don’t cost a thing. Shine your shoes, wear freshly washed clothes and generally try to scrub up well.
- Especially for first dates, a cute little gift is generally well received, and doesn’t necessarily need to cost a thing. See if your garden or your neighbors (ask them first!) have any nice-looking flowers, or make a cute personalized card.
- Do something free, or almost free.
Cheap (Sometimes Free) Date Ideas
Picnic—grab a blanket, a cheap bottle of vino and some cheese and away you go.
Games night—rock out the old board games and impress your date with your strategy skills.
At-home spa—not for a first date, unless you want to come across as a giant creep. You can make body scrubs and essentials oils using many ingredients you’d already have at home.
Fruit picking—because anything that sounds like it’s from a romantic comedy movie montage has got to be a winner.
Exercise—a double gym date might not be everyone’s idea of a good time, but how about a free hike, bike ride or some rock climbing?
Free reading—poetry readings and book readings are often free, and make for a great discussion afterwards.
Festival—free day festivals and carnivals are a great way to mooch about for a day without spending any money.
Book a tour—breweries, wineries and even cookie factories offer free tours, often with samples.
Volunteer—impress your other half with your heart of gold, and save your pennies at the same time!
And, if all else fails…kindly offer to let your date get the check. It might not guarantee you a second date, but it won’t hurt your bank balance either!