Our Favourite Cheap Date Ideas, Because Everything Is So Expensive

Our Favourite Cheap Date Ideas, Because Everything Is So Expensive

If you’re in the dating market, chances are you’ve noticed how expensive going on dates can be, especially alongside the rising cost of living. Not only is this having an impact on our wallets, it’s also impacting single Aussies and their relationships. It’s why heaps of Aussies are opting to go on cheap dates that won’t break the bank.

As if dealing with actual inflation wasn’t hard enough, let Bumble introduce you to the term ‘Date-flation’ which was the focus of their new research.

Basically, it refers to how expensive it’s getting to go on dates, which is deterring people from going on them. It also decreases people’s overall motivation to even go on a date in the first which causes a negative impact on their relationship, dating and sex lives.

In fact, a quarter of singles in Australia believe financial stress and cost of living pressures are having an impact on their dating life, according to Bumble.

It’s not all bad news, though, because with the pressures of spending heaps on a date, people are opting for more low-key options. As always, we’ve got you sorted with a little list of cheap date ideas.

But first, let’s have a look at what has come out of Bumble’s research.

Image: Getty

How is money affecting relationships and dates?

We’re more budget-conscious

If we could sum up Bumble’s data, it would be that single Aussies are thinking a lot more cautiously about their spending when it comes to first dates and in the earlier stages of dating.

Speaking personally, I know I’ve definitely suggested cheaper options for a first date because the places they suggested were very expensive.

I’ve also been caught out having to spend upwards of $100 on a date, and that took a heavy toll on my monthly budget, so any chance I can get to avoid that situation again, I’ll take it.

It looks like I’m not alone though because, according to Bumble, around 81% of single Aussies are conscious of their partner’s budget when suggesting a date venue.

Who pays for the date?

It’s something that we’ve covered here before, but the question of who should pay for the date has never been more relevant now that things are more expensive than usual.

The answer is still open for debate because more than half (53%) of people feel that their partner should pay for the date if they were the one who suggested going to an expensive venue.

Despite that, 62% of single Aussies believe that if your financial situation is better than your partner’s, you should be contributing to dates more, according to Bumble.

But what about splitting the bill? Interestingly, single women (53%) are more likely than single men (35%) to split the cost of the date because of financial pressures.

Going on cheap dates is really getting more and more appealing by the minute.

Pressures on sex life

It’s not just our dates that are suffering from the rising cost of living but also our sex lives. Is nothing sacred anymore?

From Bumble’s research, 14% of singles in Australia feel that financial stress or the pressures of rising costs is having an impact on their sex lives.

More so, millennials believe they are feeling the financial and sex pressure more than their younger counterparts.

I didn’t expect to see that people’s sex lives are taking a hit as a result of financial stress but it makes sense. If you’re going on fewer dates, there’s less chance of having intimate moments.

The rising cost of living has caused many of us to cancel on dates. (Image: Getty)

Fewer dates

While most people will try to come up with cheap date ideas, some have scrapped the idea of dating entirely because it’s too expensive.

According to Bumble, a third of single Aussies would choose not to date because of their financial stresses. One in five have turned down or delayed a date so they can budget their money better.

It’s sad to think that people have had to stop dating or turned people down because they can’t justify spending the money on it. But this has all led to the rise of the low-key date.

Rise of cheap dates

The biggest part that came out of Bumble’s research was the significant rise of cheap, low-key dates.

A resounding 82% of single Aussies said they would prefer low-key date locations to avoid any financial pressure while dating, and more than half would embrace the idea of doing free activities such as a walk in a park or the beach.

Cheap dates
Cooking dinner together is a great cheap date. (Image: Getty)

11 ideas for cheap dates

Speaking of cheap dates, we’ve compiled a list of ideas for you to use so you can save your money while potentially falling in love. You’re welcome.

Walk: For those who want to get some fresh air and their steps up on a date, consider going for a walk somewhere fun. The botanical gardens are always a great place to meet a date because you forget you’re actually just aimlessly walking around.

Picnic: This is probably the most popular (and best) cheap date idea because you can decide how much you want to spend on it. It’s also just a chill way of getting to know your date without having to worry about how much it’s going to cost you. An added bonus would be to bring some canvases or art supplies and have a cute painting session.

Home-cooked dinners: There’s something so special about cooking dinner with a date. It not only bonds you together by completing a task together but is a great way to get to know someone. It’s a popular choice too, with 42% of single Aussies considering cooking for their date so they don’t have to go to an expensive restaurant, according to Bumble.

Art gallery/museum: Art gallery and museum dates will not only save you money but add a bit of sophistication to your date. A lot of different galleries and museums have free events, exhibits and art nights that you and your date can go to. You also can’t feel like a cheapskate when you’re surrounded by very expensive art.

Discount movies: While going to the movies can be a bit of a cop-out, there are discounted movie nights that many cinemas offer. To spice things up you could go to an independent cinema that shows arthouse films.

Discount movies make for great cheap dates. (Image: Getty)

Night markets: This is a cheap date that depends on the weather and season. In summer (or even spring), going to a night food market is a great way to save yourself some money.

Games night: Now, this one can be either board games, card games or even a video games night. Playing a multiplayer game on your Switch and PlayStation is a very low-key and entertaining date. People with an intense competitive streak should probably skip this idea, though.

Thrift shopping: I haven’t given this one a go, but it’s such a great idea I might use it for my next date. Going to a thrift shop with a date keeps the prices low but the vibes high as you both rummage through old things together. It’s also a cute way of knowing the other person’s taste and style.

Ice cream/frozen yoghurt run: This is an all-time favourite cheap date idea of mine because of how low maintenance it is. You can literally get a McFlurry from Macca’s and just chill in a park, on the beach or even in the car and just chat. What more could you ask for?

Local comedy clubs: If you want to have a laugh with your date but are worried about how funny they will be, go to a comedy club! Most of the time, there will be discounted shows you can go to together.

Go for a drive: To me, there is nothing more calming than just driving around with someone and listening to music. You don’t really need a particular destination, but I always like driving to the beach and watching the sunset.

There you have it, eleven different cheap date ideas for you to try out so you can save your money.

This article has been updated since its original publish date.

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