When you’re planning a long term stint abroad, a summer holiday or even a weekend away, saving money is always part of the process. Unless you’re minted of course (which I most definitely am not). Saving money is not easy, it’s certainly not fun and it can often mean that the things you usually enjoy like shopping or eating out are out of bounds. My partner and I have been saving for our long haul trip for a while now and something which has definitely suffered is our date nights. We literally just stopped having them as saving every penny became more important. I decided this had to change, I mean spending quality time together in a fun way is important, right? So I spent a lot of time researching free or almost free date night ideas to hopefully prevent us getting bored of each other. I would love to hear what you think of them in the comments!
Eat out on the cheap
Going out for expensive meals or drinks may be off the menu whilst saving for your travels. However, that doesn’t mean going out has to be off limits completely. Lots of coupon sites such as Groupon often have really good deals for restaurants or bars. You may have to go earlier in the evening or you might be limited to 1 cocktail instead of your usual 3 or 4 but it’s without a doubt better than staying in. Recently we used a Groupon voucher for an Indian restaurant that cost €20 in total instead of €50! And it was delish!
Make your travels a date night
This may not seem like the date of dreams but bear with me. Planning a trip or long term travel can be turned into a fun date night. Turn off the TV, grab your guidebooks, a cup of tea (or a glass of wine) and your laptop and sit down together. Flick through the books, talk about countries you want to visit or don’t want to visit and why. Laugh about experiences you’ve already had in other places. And most importantly remind yourselves why you’re currently cutting down on the things you enjoy. I love reading about different destinations around the world and gazing at images of far flung places. This really fuels my wanderlust and it also helps me to stay motivated to save, especially when faced with clothes I want but 100% don’t need.
Check out free events
Another budget friendly date idea is checking out the free events that are happening in your area. Eventbrite is an amazing website which showcases events that are happening all over the world. Simply type in the city you’re in and filter by what you’re looking for and Eventbrite will show you everything that’s on. I’ve found events that I never even knew existed in my city so it’s been a lot of fun checking them out. My partner and I have turned it into a competition to see who can find the most obscure event that’s happening. He won the latest with ‘The Irish Cup Tasters competition’, we couldn’t get tickets though, it was booked out!
Take a scenic drive
This is something my partner and I do quite regularly as he loves to drive. The great thing about this date night idea is that it can be done in any season, in any weather and at any time. It rains quite a lot here in Ireland so taking a scenic drive rather than going on walks/hikes is often a better option. Try to check out places you haven’t been to for a while or even better, go on a drive to somewhere you’ve never been. My absolute favourite place to head to is anywhere along the coast. An absolute must is a Spotify playlist which we play through this car transmitter. It’s so much better than playing radio channels!
Go to a comedy club
We absolutely love going to comedy shows and live gigs but the price tag can quite often be outrageous! If you love comedy and the atmosphere of a live venue but you’re in the midst of trying to save money, then make sure to check out free/almost free comedy clubs. Everywhere i’ve ever been to from Seoul to New York has had comedy clubs. It’s a fun date night out on a budget and you never know, you just might be one of the first to see the newest star on the comedy circuit. If you live in Dublin, Whelans hosts a comedy night every Monday and it’s €5 to enter.
Have a Board Game Night
Board games are usually something we only play at Christmas time in my family. Scrabble or Monopoly being the usual choices and I always get super competitive. J isn’t the biggest fan but what we’ve both realised is that there are so many types of games out there. It’s simply a matter of finding the one that you both like. This could mean card games, the PlayStation, apps or online quizzes. I love this idea of a date night because it means the TV is off, candles can be lit, cushions spread out and you can let your fierce competitive streak come out. Only me?! Oops!
Do you have any budget saving date night ideas? How do you save for travel? I would love to hear your ideas in the comments below!
Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links. If you purchase through my link, I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.
Like this post? Then please pin and share!