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19 Last-Minute Date Ideas that Require Practically No Effort

Maintaining regular date nights after you and your partner live together is hard, to say the least. There’s a level of comfort that you might never have felt with anyone else, or at least there’s a level of intimacy that you’re not getting with anyone else in your life. Yet, you need to keep the romance alive, or else you’ll start to drift apart. What do you do?

There’s a common misconception that your date nights have to be all-out, magical experiences. Sure, it’s a good idea to have a magical date every now and then – but all you really need to do is show her that you care, on a regular basis.

Looking for some date ideas you can throw together at the last minute, without losing their charm? We’ve got you covered!

1. Have a coffee or tea date on the front porch (or similar location).

All you need for this date is a coffee maker or tea kettle, some nice cups, and a porch, balcony, or sun room. Spend the better part of the morning catching up on the small talk, the workplace gossip, or whatever else you’ve been too busy to tell each other.

2. Go for a long walk at your local park or outdoor market.

If you live somewhere with good weather (or can get somewhere with more pleasant weather in a quick time), you can arrange to go for a walk together. Make sure you have appropriate clothing and plenty of time to wander around and take in the beauty. As an added bonus, getting physically active together is a great habit to get into.

3. Have a picnic out in nature.

I’m not suggesting you go camping (because I personally hate camping), but having a picnic in the woods is romantic, relaxing, and unique. Just make sure to stock up on bug spray!

4. Go to the club and order drinks you’ve never tried.

In general, it’s probably best to stick with one new drink per night (unless you’re going with unfamiliar beers), but use your own judgment. Mix things up by ordering for each other – and don’t forget the appetizers!

5. Spend the day at the library together.

Most of us don’t spend nearly as much time reading as we should – so spend a day signing up for library cards and picking out books for one another. Try to keep your partner’s interests in mind when you choose, but toss in a few of your personal favorites, too. It’s a strange way to bond, but it’s sure to make lasting memories.

6. Go for a hike within your city.

Whether you live in the rural outskirts or a thriving metropolis, there’s sure to be places you can access only by foot – so seek them out! If you’re short on ideas, try downloading a geocaching app and see what other local users recommend.

7. Have a personal cocktail party.

Who says drinking alone has to be boring? When your party revolves around you and your partner, there’s no one else to screw things up and get in your way. As long as you clearly define your intentions beforehand, feel free to release your inhibitions.

8. Write love notes for one another, and spend the day reading them together.

Whether it’s a simple “I love you” on a sticky note or a four-page letter sealed with a kiss, try to put your feelings into words – and then take charge and read them out loud. It’s a new way to challenge your comfort with one another while bringing your relationship closer.

9. Make beautiful things together.

Many community centers offer painting, pottery, or calligraphy classes – look into the classes offered in your area and pick one to attend together. If you’re looking for something a little more last-minute, go to your local art supply store and pick up some canvas and paint and spend the day doing portraits of each other!

10. Bring in a little green.

There’s a strong connection between taking care of plants and your overall happiness – and it doesn’t matter if you don’t have a yard. Go to your local garden department and find some cool-looking plants to spruce up your place. If neither of you has a green thumb, consider succulents – they’ve got the hardiness of cacti, without the sharp edges.

11. Make breakfast in bed.

One of the greatest meals ever is homemade breakfast in bed, and thankfully breakfast foods require very little culinary skill (usually). For those who really can’t cook, picking up coffee and take-out is almost as good.

12. Hit the road – and flex those muscles.

Bike rides can be a great way to get physically fit while having a good time, and adding a little bit of friendly competition to the equation can make it even more interesting.

13. Get dressed up and book a last-minute reservation.

You might need to call a few places to find open tables, but you might get to try something you’ve never tried before. It’s worth exploring your local cuisine – you don’t need an excuse!

14. Take photos – with real film – of each other.

Get a disposable camera or a Polaroid camera and get shutter-happy. Polaroids are great because you’ll instantly have the memory in your hand, but disposables are great because the pictures can come as a surprise later. Try both and see which you prefer!

15. Have food delivered – no cooking, no dishes, no distractions.

Check out your local apps to see what you can have delivered to you. Different areas specialize in different types of food, but you might be able to spend a little more and get an out-of-town delivery if options are limited. (Don’t forget to tip extra if they had to drive a bit to get to you.)

16. Order a movie and watch it in bed.

If you subscribe to cable, chances are, there are tons of paid movies just sitting there, waiting to be watched. Be aware of the prices, as some can be ridiculously high, but order one of those movies you’ve been wanting to see – you deserve it!

17. Explore your own city as if you were a tourist.

Chances are, there are parts of your town that you’ve completely missed, or maybe even taken for granted. Leave the maps at home and the GPS off, and rely on helpful strangers to find your way around. You’ll never know what you could be missing!

18. Watch the sunset together.

It takes no time at all to grab a blanket and go outside just before dark – so why not cuddle up to your love outside tonight? If you don’t have a yard (or it’s not safe after dark in your area), pull up chairs to the window and play some soft music. Let yourself get lost in the moment!

19. Have a game night – either just the two of you, or with other couples.

We underestimate the value of friendly competition – and your partner (and your mutual friends) are some of the best people to encourage a healthy level of challenge. Whether you like cards, chutes and ladders, or Monopoly, game nights bring us closer together. What’s not to love?


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