Just as a machine needs regular maintenance—a bit of oil and tightening of some screws—to continue running smoothly, a marriage also needs continued upkeep in order to keep the relationship strong and healthy.   That means, even if you’re married, it’s important to have a “date night” on a regular basis.  

What exactly is a date night?  Urban dictionary describes a date night as this:

A time when a couple can take time for themselves away from children and responsibilities. While often occurring at night, a Date Night can happen during day hours as well. Not to be confused with a Date, as that is between unmarried couples solely.

Clear enough?  So, there can be no children and no responsibilities.  And it’s good to know that a date night doesn’t have to take place only at night.   Here’s the kicker: Depending upon what you do, going out on dates can get expensive.  That makes it all too easy for the frugal, long-time married couple to agree on skipping out on this time-tested way to keep your relationship as intense and resilient as when you first became an item.  

So, don’t let expense be an issue.  Ultimately, a date night is simply time spent together away from home.  Let’s face it—trying to have a date while staying at home just doesn’t feel so special.  There are numerous, fabulous ways to have an inexpensive, if not free, date night.  Your relationship AND your pocketbook will thank you.

So there’s dinner out.  There are picnics in the park.  But here are 3 more unique—and cheap—date night ideas you may not have considered, that can be done at any time of day.  Maybe it will get your creative juices flowing for other date night ideas as well.  

First, set aside several hours on a day or evening at a time that works for both of you.  Mark the calendar and save the date.  Remember to make it special by dressing for the occasion.  That doesn’t necessarily mean dress up and get fancy, rather, just put some thought into the occasion . . . and the company.  It’s a date, after all.


Learning something new together is a bonding experience.  Think of something you both want to know more about.  Order a book about it from the library.  Find a spot you both love—a park, a coffee shop, a nook in some bookstore, or the library itself—and take turns reading parts of the book.  Discuss what you are learning.  

Money spent: none unless you buy coffee


This may sound crazy, but it’s a great way to show a LOT of attention to your mate.  Find a nice neighborhood or nature path where you both like to walk.  Blindfold your spouse or simply make him shut his eyes and lead him as you walk.  When you see something you think your spouse may find interesting, lead him over to it and let him open his eyes to see it for just a moment.  Then, have him shut his eyes again and continue walking.  Take turns leading each other and sharing snippets of interesting, beautiful objects and scenes.  This is most fun at night.

Money spent: absolutely nothing


Again, find somewhere—not your own home—to “set up camp” for a few hours.  In preparation, both you and your spouse must think of ten or so questions to ask each other.   Imagine your spouse to be a famous person that you want to interview and vice versa.  Treat each other as such.  Take turns acting as the interviewer; both of you should get a solid block of time getting interviewed.   A park or bookstore are both perfectly fine, free places to do this. But a fun, slightly more expensive upgrade is to find a great cocktail spot.

Money spent: nothing unless you have a cocktail