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50 Fun, Cheap Date Ideas That Put Dinner and a Movie to Shame

You don't need to spend your life's savings to have one sexy night.

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    Go for a Run

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    See a Movie At An Off Time

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    Ride a Ferry

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    Go to An Unknown Band's Concert

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    Play Laser Tag

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    Try a New Recipe At Home Together

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    Take a Dance Class Together

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    Get Competitive

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    Go to a Music Festival

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    See An Improv Show

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    Go to the Beach

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    Learn How to Make Cocktails and Develop Your Own At-Home Bar

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    Have a "Staycation"

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    Have Brunch At Home

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    Walk Along a Boardwalk

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    Go Stargazing

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    Explore a Neighborhood You Don't Know

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    Go On a Bike Ride

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    Go for a Picnic

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    Go Apple Picking

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    Go to a Carnival

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    Learn to Play An Instrument Together

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    Go to the Arcade

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    Go for a Boat Ride

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    Volunteer Together

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    Garden Together

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    Go Camping

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    Go Hiking

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    Go to a Brewery

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    Do Yoga Outdoors

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    Hit Up a Street Fair

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    Go to a Zoo

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    Go to the Aquarium

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    Test Drive a Car

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    Get Classy On the Cheap

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    Check Out a Local Art Gallery

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    Just Get Coffee!

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    Crack Open a New Bottle of Wine

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    Do Something Touristy You Haven't Done Before

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    Get Cheap Seats to a Broadway Show

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    Take a Cooking Clas

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    Go to Trivia Night

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    Go On a Scenic Drive

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    Go to a State Park

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    Go to the Museum

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    Go Pumpkin Picking

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    Go to a Vineyard

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    Get Crafty

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    Play a Sport

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    Watch the Sunset Together

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  • It's cheaper than taking boutique fitness classes together, and you can maybe catch a gorgeous view together, too.

  • Sure, there's the old dinner-and-a-movie standby date, but shake it up by going for a matinee on Sunday.

  • In New York City, you can take a ferry to Staten Island for free. Other ferries cost nominal fees. The destination is besides the point — it's about the boat ride and taking in the views together.

  • Find smaller, local venues that host up-and-coming or independent musicians. Tickets are likely cheap, and when the band blows up, you'll be able to say you know it when.

  • Prices vary by location, but a game tends to be not particularly pricey. Nothing like unleashing your inner kid and shooting your paramour with lasers.

  • You could drop several Benjamins on a Michelin-starred meal...or you could get a cookbook and make it your mission to get through every meal together.

  • ...The tango is the dance of passion, isn't it? Fred Astaire dance school has franchises across the globe, and tends to offer introductory rates for new students.

  • Whether it's a nerdy night of board games like Settlers of Catan or some chess in the park, you can get competitive with each other. Though, of course, everyone's a winner afterwards.

  • Think about it: That's how many concerts for one price? And don't forget about all the photo ops you'll have.

  • So you've been to comedy shows and you don't like them because the comedian always singles you out — and the two drink minimums negate the cheap aspect. Try seeing improv.

  • Even if it's no longer hot out, you can venture to the beach and have a blast. Grab a blanket, pack some food, and take in the views.

  • Going out to "just drinks" can seem like it'll drain your wallet less than an expensive dinner would, but after several rounds, the drinks can add up. So learn to do it yourself! Pick up a starter set and some ingredients from your favorite drinks and get going. Don't know where to start? Try some of the best cocktails around the country.

  • No, that doesn't mean being a recluse and gluing your butt to your couch to zone out and watch reruns of Gilmore Girls. Treat it as you would a vacation — take a bath, light some candles, and get. It. On.

  • That means make your own fancy coffee, bloody Marys, and poached eggs. You'll save money from going to an all-you-can-drink brunch, and you'll still have the Instagrammable pics.

  • It's free, it's fun, and maybe you'll explore some cool shops and food along the way.

  • The free app SkyView helps you identify constellations, too. Astronomy plus romance equals a good, cheap date.

  • It's a little adventurous, and who knows — maybe you'll find the next neighborhood to which you want to move.

  • Get some exercise and travel to your destination of choice at the same time. If you don't own a bike, see if your city has a bike sharing program.

  • Do a quick grocery shopping trip — or just clean out what's in your fridge — and then enjoy some fresh air.

  • It's perfect for the fall, and think about all the apple pie-baking dates you can have afterwards.

  • Rides, carnival food, and games? Oh, and selfies.

  • Not into shelling out lots of cash for an instructor? There's an app on iTunes called Coach Guitar that can teach you how to play guitar.

  • Travel back to your youth. Want to make it a more grown-up version of your childhood? Barcade, which has several locations across the East Coast, is exactly what it sounds like: a bar with old school arcade games.

  • Rent a canoe or a kayak. Just don't tip!

  • Whether you're helping out by volunteering at an animal shelter with The Humane Society, building homes or making sandwiches for a food run, it's all for a good cause. Create The Good is a newsletter that can help you find volunteer opportunities.

  • Start building your own garden together. Maybe you'll even want to grow your own fresh vegetables, so you can cook them. (Think how many dates you get out of that!)

  • In the mountain, in the woods, wherever. And just think about the hot outdoor sex you can have...

  • Staying overnight outdoors not your thing? Try going for a hike and exploring new heights — literally — together.

  • Check out how beer is made, and maybe even learn how to make your own.

  • Join a Meetup group for outdoor yoga across the country, or see if your city offers free outdoor (or even indoor!) yoga classes.

  • There are probably lots of great local vendors selling all sorts of goods — and you're not up for big spending, you can get a bite to eat and take it all in.

  • Zoos tend to not have pricey entrance fees.

  • Some aquariums — like the Texas Sea Center — are free with a suggested donation.The New York Aquarium has hours and days in which admission is free or donation-based, too.

  • Whether you've dreamed of riding with the top down or testing out a Tesla, you can test drive most cars.

  • See if you can get standing room tickets to a ballet or the opera. Wear your nicest clothes and relish in the fact that you didn't pay a pretty penny for the tickets.

  • It's always good to support local artists. Maybe you'll even find a free one.

  • It's as cheap as it gets...well, depending on where you get the coffee.

  • Make it your mission to become sommeliers (to an extent) by actually learning about wines and discovering which ones you really like. Plus, couples that drink together are more likely to stay together! Cheers.

  • You swore it's cheesy, but now you're looking for something to do: maybe it's strolling the High Line in New York or walking the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco.

  • Lots of Broadway shows (even Hamilton!) have lottery tickets that can be as low as $10-20. The app TodayTix makes it easier than ever to enter a lottery.

  • Some stores even offer free classes. In fact, Williams Sonoma offers free technique classes.

  • Get competitive on the cheap and see who knows the most about random stuff.

  • During the fall, it's an easy way to see the foliage.

  • Crack open the grill, lay out in the grass, or just do what these guys are doing — dance.

  • Museums tend to be cheap,  and some have free days or pay-what-you wish policies. 

  • Basic? Who cares. There's a reason everyone loves pumpkin season.

  • Many vineyard tours include free tastings. A tour and tasting at the Newport Vineyards.  You can also check Groupon to see if there are any discounted wine tours near you, too.

  • Whether it's painting, making pottery, or making candles.

  • Table tennis or basketball — unleash your inner athlete and competitive streak.

  • Cliche? Maybe. But there's probably two reasons couples have been doing this for epochs: 1) It's romantic as all hell, and 2) it's free!