51 Fun, Cheap Date Ideas That Are Perfect for Summer

By David Small •  Updated: 03/25/19 •  17 min read

Searching for cheap date ideas that are perfect for summer? Search no more! The best thing about summer is being able to go out and enjoy fresh air and each other’s company, that’s why we’re bringing to you these 51 fun, cheap date ideas that are perfect for summer .

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It’s always very hard to come up with cheap date ideas that are perfect for summer and that are also fun and enjoyable. We are here to help stop the headache, listed below are 51 fun, cheap date ideas you and your partner will surely enjoy.

1. Grab Soft Serve Cones From the McDonald’s Dollar Menu

Talking about cheap date ideas that are perfect for summer without first listing this one is a ‘No No’. Soft serve cones are delicious, and who doesn’t want to have a taste of McDonald’s Soft serve cones?  With each treat made with sweet, creamy vanilla soft serve in a crispy cone.

One thing about McDonald’s is that they take great care to serve quality and great-tasting menu items (Did I mention the soft serves are only $1?)

2. Be a Tourist in Your Own City

Who won’t like cheap date ideas where they’ll be tourists in their own city? It’s summer, find out what tourist attractions  are in your city and spend time together acting like tourists, which includes taking cheesy pictures. What a fun time that’s going to be!

3. Theme Nights Are Great Cheap Dates Ideas

InDate Your Spouse from Your House: 52 Budget-Friendly Ways to Go Out While Staying In’, authored by Sarah Excell, she wrote how she decided it was time to reinvest in her love life.You too can invest in your love life by choosing to go with this cheap date idea.

Pick a theme for the night and center everything around it. For example, Indian night. You could eat Indian food and go salsa dancing! Indian foods are relatively cheap for a date in summer.

4. Restaurant Hop

Go to a different restaurant for each course of the meal. Make three stops for an appetizer, main course and dessert. Take turns picking where to go! Opt for the cheap restaurants.

5. Make Breakfast Together and Eat it in Bed


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Making dinner together and eating it in bed can help strengthen relationships. This fun cheap date idea is perfect for summer and will save you a lot of money.

If you’re married and would like to go with this cheap date idea, you can equally check out other cheap date ideas in this book on Amazon ‘Cheap dates for classy couples’ by Paula Whidden.

6. Go For a Swim

Swimming is a physical exercise cheap date idea that’s not only cool, but also fun, and more so in the summer.

Head to a local pool and relax in the hot tub. Do local pools cost that much? I don’t think so. You can go with your snacks too and enjoy your time together.

7. Go Out for Dessert

Great for couples on a budget, or for a low-stakes date. Everyone knows the way to a woman’s heart is via mountains of gooey chocolate.

All those endorphins and all that coffee have got to add up to something promising. A dessert date always serves as cheap date ideas that is perfect for summer. Go for it!

8. Go Surfing

It’s no secret that surfing is fun especially in the summer, it can make you and your partner to feel young and wild and free. After catching some solid waves, you both will be happier, friendlier and more relaxed.

Surfing is one of the most affordable sports out there and should be in the list of cheap date ideas. If you are near a surf break, then the cost of going surfing is absolutely free.

The only way surfing can cost you is if you travel to surf. But then, it’s the traveling that costs money, not the surfing. Go surfing if you live near the ocean, or hit up the wave pool at your local water park.

9. Scavenger Hunt

When the weather is nice, go on a scavenger hunt for items you both love! You’ll get a chance to enjoy the sun and learn more about each other. Use this list and try to find all of these things in your town, mall, or other local destination together.

Steven C. Smith’s book ‘Cheap Dates: Fun, Creative, and Romantic Dates That Won’t Break Your Budget’ will also help give you more cheap date ideas that are perfect for summer and won’t break your budget.

10. Coffee Date


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Coffee date is cheap and perfect for summer and allows two people to meet in a casual, no frills setting and focus on what’s important; getting to know each other.

Check out a cool coffee shop and cool down with some iced coffee. Pick a place that’s relatively easy for both of you to get to.

11. Vintage Shopping

Go vintage shopping to escape from the heat. Some of the loveliest and cheapest clothing stores in the United Sates happen to be vintage stores.

Shopping vintage is always a good date idea if you guys feel like scooping up unique duds no one else has.

12. Local Summer Festival

Hit the streets for a local summer festival. They’re filled with awesome artists and great food, so it’s a must-do for summer, Yes!

You should know that every summer there are tons of local festivals that are filled with free food, music, culture, dance, and art. Check out a list of free festivals across the country on Eventbrite’s website.

13. Movie on the Move

Turn a regular movie night into a fun adventure just by changing the location! Instead of the usual movie night on the couch in the living room- why not watch a scary movie on your laptop in an empty field or a romantic chick flick on your iPad next to a beautiful overlook? The options are endless! This is actually one of the many cheap dates ideas that will absolutely cost you nothing.

14. House Hunting Date

Spend a day checking out open houses together — even if you have no intention of buying. And if your date’s quick on their feet, play a little game. Tell a different ‘story’ to the realtor at each house about how you have twelve kids, or need a special room to display all of your award-winning taxidermy.

Whoever laughs first buys lunch! Buying lunch is the only thing it will cost. Now, is that not a cheap date idea?

15. Power Outage Date


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This indoor date idea will actually cost $0. All you need to do is to turn the lights out and turn date night ON!! There are so many fun things you can do without lights. This is one of our favorite creative cheap date ideas, and it’s best done in summer.

16. Moonlight Picnic

A romantic picnic for two under the moonlight! Just picture it – a warm summer night, twinkling stars, a delicious dinner! Boom – ROMANTIC! It’s so easy it can be done in your own backyard.

Life gets so busy in the summer. A Moonlight Picnic is the perfect way to spend some quality time with your spouse in the quiet of the evening. It’s so easy to put this creative cheap date idea together.

17. Discover a New Town Together

Why not try exploring somewhere NEW together? Summer is the best time to try this out. Even if you’ve lived in the same place for your whole life, I guarantee there are cities and neighborhoods nearby that you have not discovered yet. So pull out a map and go on a spontaneous adventure.

18. Tube Down a River

River tubing will provide you and your partner a river trip experience that will create a good memory and it’s always fun.

Tubing down a river will be a great experience and it’s one of the best summer activities that is enjoyable. Bust out a six-pack of whatever  you like to drink, hop in a tube, and have a blast.

19. Sign Up for Trivia Night

Sign up together for trivia night at a local bar to see how well you can recall random facts. Winners usually leave with a cash prize, meaning that you could share a winner’s pot (or save it for your next date night).

20. Load Up on Free Samples

Cheap Dates Ideas

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Head to a nearby market, grocery store, or even Costco and see how many tasty things you can find together. Hey, a free meal is a free meal, right?

21. Visit a Hotel Pool

Send the kids to Grandma’s house for the afternoon if you’re married couples, then find a hotel pool near you that sells day passes. It’s like a mini-vacation, without the annoying airport part.

Also inside Christian Love’s book ‘Dating Ideas: Romantic, Cheap, Cute, Unique, Blind, Anniversary & Good First Date Ideas’, you’ll find a large selection of ideas for taking out your special man or woman. The book also has creative ideas and the help you need for creating a fun, romantic, and adventurous dating extravaganza, even if you are on a limited budget.

22. Just Dance

You don’t have to head to the nearest nightclub to get your groove on. Whip up a pitcher of Sangria, pull up some salsa-dancing lessons on YouTube, and you’ll be ready for a hilarious summer night of dirty dancing. It will cost you absolutely nothing.

23. See a Movie

You might think it’s cliché, but it’s a perfect way to stay cool in the summer heat. Opt for a matinee; you may get a deal.

24. Go to a Botanical Garden

Take a romantic stroll through your nearest botanical garden and get lost in all the pretty flowers and plants.

After all it’s summer, the atmosphere in the garden will make you both feel like it’s a paradise. It’s a cheap date idea and will be romantic and fun.

25. See a Concert Under the Stars

50 Fun, Cheap Dates Ideas That Are Perfect for Summer

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Even if you don’t make it right to the front and center of the pit area, you can still sit on the grass and stargaze. Pack a blanket and enjoy the good music.

26. Eat Your Way Through a Farmer’s Market

Enjoy the summer with this cheap date idea by visiting a farmer’s market with your significant other. You’ll find individual vendors — mostly farmers — who set up booths to sell locally grown products. Stroll around, smell the flowers and try all of the food samples, from the aged Gouda to the warm loaves of sourdough bread.

Be inspired by what’s in season and grab the ripest, red apple to snack on while walking around with your spouse. If you’re in the mood for lunch, you can find all of the ingredients here to make your very own picnic for two.

27. Cook Dinner Together

Show off your skills! You know what they say about the way to a man’s heart…? But, both of you have to do the cooking together now. It will make the dinner even more enjoyable than having it at those overpriced and overcrowded restaurants.

28. Go Watch a Game

Go to an amateur sports game, even if you’re not a fan. Tickets are usually super cheap, along with popcorn!

Date Like a Ninja: 75 Kick-Awesome Date Ideas by Claire M Wilson also has date ideas that are guaranteed to take your relationship to the next level. Check out the book on Amazon.

29. Go Fishing

Fishing is an other cheap dates ideas that’s fun and relaxing. It’s the perfect way to spend quality time sitting on a dock with your significant other.

30. Go for Fro-Yo

Dates Ideas

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When it’s sweltering outside, head to a build-your-own yogurt shop. Fill up on your favorite flavors and have fun going crazy on toppings. Then, share the finished products between the two of you.

31. Visit an Amusement Park

Going to an amusement park with your date can help you show off your inner-daredevil as well as help you show off more of your fun personality. In fact, if you consider yourself a thrill-seeker, this is one of the cheap date ideas that is bound to get your heart pumping with someone who may turn out to be your sweetheart in the future; if you both are not married yet.

Indulge your inner child with an old-fashioned day at the amusement park. Play games, take the Ferris wheel for a spin, or kick it up a notch with a rousing round of bumper cars.

32. Mini Golf

Show off your competitive side and play a few rounds of mini golf. If you want to make things interesting, you can also make a fun bet. Loser buys the winner ice cream! The ice cream won’t cost much anyway.

33. Brunch

Go on a brunch date together. Not only is brunch food the best, but it’s also perfect for people who like to sleep in on the weekends. It’s cheap and perfect for summer.

34. Watch the Sunset

Grab a bottle of wine, crank some tunes, and kick back on your porch or in your backyard to enjoy nature at its finest. This date idea is a classic one, it will leave you both feeling like you’re in heaven already.

35. Drive-In Movie


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Go to a drive-in movie theater. It’s not too hot at night, the tickets are cheaper than movie theaters, and there’s always privacy!

36. Hit Up Happy Hours

If you’re looking to have a ton of fun without spending a ton, taking advantage of happy hours can be a great way to save money while you and your partner can stay in high spirits.

For instance, attending a Martini Monday, Taco Tuesday or simply meeting a bit earlier so that you can both order from a happy hour menu. This can save you cash without skimping on excitement.

37. Visit a Nature Center

They are generally free to the public to walk around and explore different parts of history in your area and see different changes in the land around you.

38. Use Discount Apps

When you’re trying to find inexpensive date activities in your area, it’s in your best interest to take advantage of offers through discount apps.

You may think that pricier ideas such as having a couple’s massage might be out of reach financially. However, these apps put the best deals at your fingertips whether it is dinner at a trendy restaurant or having a couples’ spa day.

39. Hit Up an Outdoor Concert

Whether it’s a festival or a concert you both have been dying to see, you’ll have a blast singing your favorite songs at the top of your lungs. 

40. Rent a Kayak

Cheap Dates Ideas

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Working in tandem, a few paddle splash wars, and a fun way to stay cool and active equals summer date perfection.

41. Go Boating/Sailing

There’s something about just being on a boat that makes it so fun, but a sunset sail or waterboarding on a boat makes it even more exciting and memorable.

42. Road Trip to a Nearby City for a Day

While everyone is vacationing you two can pretend you are too; for a few hours while catching some new sights and making some new memories.

43. Dog Sit

Another cheap date idea that’ll help you determine if you and your partner have more than just puppy love is to make your date dog-friendly.

And whether you have your own dog or your friend or relative lets you borrow his or her pup, you and your partner can take the dog (or dogs) out on a walk or to a local dog park for a date.  It won’t take a bite out of your paycheck.

44. Volunteer

Another cheap date idea that’s priceless in every sense is to volunteer. For instance, you and your date can go to an animal shelter, food bank, or local garden and spend your time lending a hand to those in need.

In fact, helping others will actually enable you to learn a lot about your date and connect with him or her in a new way.

45. Host a Game Night


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If you’re looking for cheap date ideas that’s full of laughs and keeps your wallet full as well, invite your partner over for a game night at your place.

And whether you play new board games, classic games from your childhood or simply bust out a deck of cards, a fun night is definitely in the cards for you and your date.

46. Buy Water Guns for an Epic Fight, It’s One Of The Cheap Date Ideas That’s Awesome.

When you’re ready to take your relationship to the next level and commit to more than water-balloons, large water guns and set rules and boundaries make for a more intense and fun summer date night.

47. Attend a Soccer Game

if baseball isn’t your thing, this is one way to still enjoy stadium food, athletic events, and plenty of conversation time.

48. Make a Bonfire

Pretend one of you knows what you’re doing and grab some wood and matches to light up a bonfire on the beach. It’s perfect for cooler nights when it’s not totally freezing outside.

49. Visit a Museum

While certain museums have steep ticket prices, many hold free or discounted days or hours during weekdays so you can get cultured on a budget.

In the museum with your partner, you both get to take a leisurely stroll, trade sophisticated quips about paintings and sculpture and (if you really like each other) linger over coffee and pie in the museum restaurant. It’s always a pleasant feeling to visit the museum on a date with that special one.

50. A Ferry Ride

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Speaking of water views, relocate your date to the nearest ferry if you want a change of scenery. Aim for an unexplored area for a longer day trip, or try a short round-trip ride for a first date where you’re still—literally and figuratively—testing the waters.

51. Arcade Night

For an awesome time at an arcade, all you need are some quarters. Make things more interesting by betting a drink on the person who can win the most prizes.


These listed 51 fun, cheap date ideas for summer will show your significant other that you are creative. So don’t be afraid to try something new and different. Don’t let things get too serious, because the most important part of a summer date is keeping everything fun and casual.

This means knowing your limits when it comes to physical and emotional intimacy; you don’t want to do anything you’ll regret later. There are some of the cheap date ideas you can carry out at home as well as out in the town, and yes! without breaking the bank!

David Small

is the founder and editor of relationshiptips4u. He is a dating, marriage & relationship coach, speaker, and author. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
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