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By Citizen Reporter


Valentine’s Day: 10 date night ideas that won’t break the bank

A dating app CEO shares fun date night activities to do with your special someone on a budget this Valentine's Day.

Whether it’s for Valentine’s Day or date night in general, trying to find an activity to do with your special someone on a budget can prove difficult.

With the repo rate being raised every other month, the petrol price rising on a regular basis and the cost of the average South African food basket reaching record highs, it is safe to say that our finances are collectively under strain. 

Every aspect of our lives is affected by this reality and this includes relationships. 

However, with Valentine’s Day a few days away, many are still looking for ways to celebrate the day with loved ones no matter what is going on with the cost of living crisis. 

Another thing that has undoubtedly taken its toll on us and our relationships is the pandemic which has left many feeling uninspired and demotivated. 

To help spark a little inspiration, Valon Asani from relationship app Dua.com has shared some fun and quirky date night ideas that you most likely have not done before and are easy on your wallet.  

1. At home Paint and Sip 

Young hispanic man artist drinking wine drawing at art studio
Young man artist drinking wine drawing at an art studio | Picture: iStock

‘Paint and Sips’ are an excellent way to see how you and your partner can get creative, however, they can be pricey. 

Paint and Sips are in-formal art classes where you and the other people in the room paint the same image while you sip on cocktails, mocktails, or wine.  

You can recreate a similar experience at home that is not limited to painting and can include fancy homemade cocktails/mocktails. 

You can purchase affordable arts and crafts sets from your local craft store or even create something using air-drying clay.  

2. Game Night  

Game nights are a fun and competitive way to put your partner’s skills to the test. Most video games do have a co-op mode where you can team up together. Story-based games are great as you through challenges together. 

Board games can also provide hours of entertainment on a low budget. You can find rare board games at charity shops. Most new board games are fairly inexpensive and can be a great option for date night.  

3. Visit an Art Gallery or Museum 

Most museums and galleries have free entry or discounted tickets available, which means you can get cultured on a low budget. 

This is a great way to see what art styles your partner likes and can even help you decide what to create for your ‘At home Paint and Sip’ 

ALSO READ: Valentine’s Day gift guide: A gift for each of the senses

4. The viral £5/$5 meal challenge 

This challenge has taken over social media and is a fun way to put your cooking, budgeting and creative abilities to the test. Taking turns, you and your partner must come up with a three-course meal that stays within a set budget – typically the budget is set low to make this more challenging – the lower it is, the more difficult. The challenge is in the budget, and the lower it is, the more challenging it can be. 

5. Book Club 

If your partner is an introvert or book lover, they will love this date night idea. 

An ‘at home book club’ where you and your partner can read the same book, with a cosy drink and candles. Not only can this improve your communication skills with your partner as you discuss your thoughts on the book, but this can also provoke interesting and thoughtful conversations. 

This can be a great and intimate way to reignite the spark in your relationship. 

6. Gardening  

Some garden centres offer free volunteer gardening days, especially in the Spring. This can be a fun activity with your partner, and you can give back to your community at the same time!  

You can also garden at home, growing seasonal fruits or vegetables that you can harvest and cook with.  Over time this can be very cost-effective, as you can re-grow your own produce.  

7. Come Dine with Me 

Cooking and baking is a fun activity to do with your partner. You can try recipes from various parts of the world and learn about different cultures. 

To make this more fun and competitive, you can host a couples Come Dine With Me for date night and judge your partner’s dishes (lovingly, of course)! 

8. Hobby Swap 

This is for the partner that finds themselves doing what their partner likes most of the time. Take turns explaining and participating in your partner’s hobbies. 

This can also help you get to know your partner even more. You can teach your partner a skill that you have, such as playing the piano.  

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE: Five Valentine’s Day restaurant specials near you 

9. Play Tourist 

elderly couple out on the town for date night
Couple taking an evening stroll in the city | Picture: iStock

You can become a tourist in your own city with your partner because the chances are you’ve not been to any historical places that are on your doorstep. 

A spokesperson from Dua.com says that “exploring your city can be refreshing and give you a new perspective on where you live”.  

10. IKEA Challenge 

IKEA – the international furniture company – is a great date night spot according to the people at Dua.com. 

They owe this to the fact that there is a lot of walking and talking involved, plus there is no entry fee. 

“You and your partner can walk through the showrooms or even grab something to eat at their food hall. You can even find something that is within your budget to build together.” 

To put a local spin on this date idea, check out stores like Leeroy Merlin, @Home or Coricraft. 

Compiled by Kaunda Selisho

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