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Impressing your valentine on a dime

It’s easy to rack up the expenses while dating. Flowers, chocolates and a dinner out can see you easily dropping three figures. But often, the most impressive dates aren’t the ones that break the bank.

It’s easy to rack up the expenses while dating. Flowers, chocolates and a dinner out can see you easily dropping three figures. When the romance is fresh, there’s even more pressure to impress. If you have savings goals, or are just trying to stay on a budget, you can end up hating the season of love.

But often, the most impressive dates aren’t the ones that break the bank. At the end of the day, if you click with that special someone, how much you spend on a night out won’t make any difference. Let’s look at ways to have a fantastic time on a date while keeping more money for your savings.


Saving and staying in

Once you have an established rapport with someone, staying in can be just as fun as going out. Best of all, this date won’t drain your savings. Ditch those pricey restaurant dinners and instead prepare one of those fantastic meals together. A lot of different publications (from Huffington Post to Clean Plates) report that couples who cook together tend to stay together. It helps with creativity and stress relief while also making memories together and strengthening a sense of cooperation. So, not only does cooking at home save you money, it can make your relationship stronger.

Believe it or not, you can help your new romance bloom with the help of Seth Rogen movies and Scrabble. 

There’s actually scientific research that shows if you and your romantic interest or partner laugh at the same things, you might have a more satisfying relationship. Nights in streaming movies on Netflix or playing board games can do a lot for a budding relationship. They sometimes get a bad rap as cheap or lazy dates, but in reality they can be a litmus test for how well you mesh. Watching movies or playing board games can mean making each other laugh and developing the kind of connection that’s going to last.



Nights out for a price-conscious date

You know what kind of night out doesn’t cost anything? Finding something to do in the great outdoors. If this sounds like a perfect date for you, then you’re on your way to some healthy love. Time spent outdoors together can lead to better relationships. And there certainly isn’t a shortage of things to do outside. Even a simple walk through your neighbourhood could lead to some fantastic conversations to fuel that romantic spark. This includes getting outdoors in the wintertime. Winter hikes can provide some of the most gorgeous scenery you have ever experienced.

If big cities are more your speed, art installations or outdoor festivals — even in the dead of winter — can almost always be found.

Cities like Toronto and Vancouver have plenty of free events and activities to check out that make for perfect dates. Finding free things to explore could score you some major creativity points with your date.


Splitting the cost won’t kill romance

Many of the most uncomfortable conversations you can have are about money. This is especially the case when asking about splitting the cost of a date. The best thing you can do with your date is ask how they want to take care of paying for a great night out. Having this conversation before your date might make things a little more smooth than having it once the cheque arrives! But simply talking through how you’re both hoping the date will go could help you save a few bucks and ensure that you both have a great experience in the end.

The better you get to know the person you’re dating, the easier it can be to discuss splitting costs. Early on in the relationship it can be a stressful topic but honest and frank conversations are almost always the best approach for managing any uncertainty, especially when it comes to romance and dating. That’s not to say you should never treat your special someone. But one person paying for an entire dating experience doesn’t always have to be the norm.

How are you saving money when it comes to romance? What are your favourite low- to no-cost dates that still make for unforgettable evenings? Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to keep the conversation going!