Things to Do

Hit Refresh on Your Relationship – 11 Quick and Easy Date Night Ideas

Are all the deadlines, responsibilities and commitments you’re facing getting in the way of the quality time you want to spend with your significant other?

When you have a hectic work schedule, household chores and pressing social obligations, coming up with a plan for “Date Night” with your partner can feel like another overwhelming chore on an endless to-do list. 

Don’t get hung up on the idea that date nights must involve meticulously planned romantic excursions and extravagant gestures. The truth is that prioritizing date night doesn’t have to be complicated or stressful. It’s often the simple, spontaneous moments that have the most profound impact on a relationship. 

By taking the pressure off the situation and embracing the beauty of improvisation, you can create successful and memorable date nights with minimal planning and effort – and we have some suggestions to make things easier. If you’re looking for some inspiration to spice up your date nights, here are some quick and easy ideas to try:

1. Have a Night Picnic

Take advantage of a clear night sky by packing a cozy blanket, some tasty snacks and maybe a six-pack of your favorite local brew or bottle of wine for a romantic picnic under the stars. Find a quiet spot away from the city lights, lay back and enjoy the beauty of the night together. Curl up together and see how many different constellations you can find in the stars.

2. Start Cooking Together

Good food is made with love, so why not channel the love in your relationship into a meal? Choose a recipe that both of you are excited to try, dig through YouTube or another online forum for an instruction video, and enjoy the process of making your culinary masterpiece. Cooking together fosters teamwork and allows for some playful banter and bonding over a shared meal.

3. Do a DIY Spa Night

Don’t feel like going out? That’s okay, too! Treat yourselves to a relaxing spa night without leaving the comfort of your home. Set the mood with candles, soothing music and aromatic oils, then take turns with your partner giving each other massages and facials. Acts of care and affection like these can create a deep kind of intimacy – and you’re bound to spend a lot of time talking (and probably laughing).

4. Have an Outdoor Adventure

This is a great date night idea if you and your significant other spend most of your time working indoors and you’re really feeling hemmed in or stifled. Embrace the great outdoors and go for a hike, a bike ride or just wander through your favorite park. Spending time in nature not only reduces stress but also provides ample opportunities for meaningful conversations and shared experiences with the one you love.

5. Try Game Night

Drag out the card deck or dust off the Scrabble box and have a friendly competition with your partner. Pull out the cold cuts and make sandwiches or lay out a charcuterie board for a low-key meal. Kick it up a notch by opening a bottle or two of wine to enhance your relaxation. Let game night bring out your playful side!

6. Go on a Movie Marathon

Snuggle up on the couch with a selection of your favorite movies or binge-watch a new TV series together – just don’t forget the popcorn, pillows and blankets! You can take turns choosing films or exploring a theme like classic romances, silly monster movies or action-packed thrillers. This is also a great low-energy option for when you are not feeling motivated to get dressed to go out.

7. Pick a Show

Find a bar, a club or a theater and head in for any show that sounds interesting. Support local artists and businesses by attending a live performance or art exhibition in your area. Whether it’s a theater production, a comedy show, a local band or a new gallery opening, experiencing the arts together can ignite stimulating conversations and broaden your cultural horizons. (Don’t forget to grab dinner at a nearby restaurant before or after to complete your night out.)

8. Go Down Memory Lane

Reminiscing about significant moments in your cojoined past can evoke nostalgia and strengthen the emotional bond between you and your partner – and it shows your romantic side. Revisit the scene of your first date, your first kiss or your proposal. This is a great way to quietly tell your partner that you are just as in love with them today as you were yesterday (and all your yesterdays) before.

9. Try Indoor Camping

If the outdoors is most certainly not your thing, or the weather just won’t cooperate with your outdoor plans, take your romance indoors!  Transform your living room into a cozy campsite with the help of a blanket fort. Bring out the sleeping bags for a night of snuggling under the stars—err, ceiling – and make the night complete by indulging in all your favorite “forbidden” foods, like pizza and ice cream.

10. Do a Restaurant Hop

This is a fun twist on dinner, where you start at one restaurant for appetizers, go to a second one for your main course, and find a third for dessert – and then find a coffee shop or a bar for the two of you to wind down your evening out on the town. The idea is to take the meal slowly, and really spend time just talking and reconnecting as if you were new to each other again.

11. Thrift for Treasures

Set a budget and pick a consignment store or thrift shop and go exploring. For a little extra fun, make it a contest: See who can find the weirdest item, the coolest thing to add to your home decor or each look for something you think the other would enjoy. However you decide to work it, this kind of activity is bound to spur a lot of conversation.

A date with your significant other doesn’t always have to involve dressing up (although that’s fun) or spending a lot of money (although that’s fine, too) – but it should include a way for you and your special someone to deepen the friendship that underlies your romance. In the end, your romance is not about grand gestures or extravagant plans—it’s about showing up for each other, even in the midst of life’s chaos.