32 (Almost Free) At-Home Date Ideas to Keep the Romance Alive

Spend quality time together without breaking the bank.

couple dancing in kitchen

Getty Images

Spending time with a significant other at home is intimate, especially without the intrusion of a waiter, friends, or the world at large. If you’re in a new relationship, this stage can be exciting and somewhat intimidating. And if you’ve been around your plus-one for a while, then you know this chapter can also be relaxing. While we often think that dates need some sort of production quality to them and that such occasions have to take place beyond a home’s comfortable cocoon, why not see how much fun you can have on an at-home date?

We put together a list of 32 at-home date ideas. Whether you have one hour, several hours, or an entire day to spare, you can make this time a special romantic memory.

01 of 32

Make a Great Cup of Coffee Together

Couple enjoying coffee together sitting outside

Carlo Prearo/EyeEm/Getty Images

What better way to start your day than with a little romance? Break out the Chemex (or the bougie tea selection) and put some effort into that morning brew with your honey.

02 of 32

Enjoy a Phone-Free Meal

Leave your distracting phones in the other room and really connect during an unplugged meal. Whether you cook or order takeout, you'll enjoy a deeper conversation without technology constantly interrupting you.

Make phone-free dinners a habit. That way, you can connect with your partner any day of the week.

03 of 32

Have a Conversation That Isn’t About Work, Stress, or To-Do Lists

Get to know each other on a more intimate level. Be intentional with your conversation and leave any superficial stressors at the door. For extra inspiration, try using couples' conversation starters to guide the discussion to all-new depths.

04 of 32

Stay in Bed

Couple cuddling in bed while looking at the phone

Westend61/Getty Images

Seriously, when was the last time you two let yourselves relax in bed before jumping up to get things done? Have a proper lay-in and really luxuriate in your time between the sheets. Elevate the experience by investing in plush bedding and scents that create the ambiance of your, well, dreams.

05 of 32

Put a Puzzle Together

You fit like two pieces of a puzzle, but let's see how you fare at putting one together. See if you can tackle 1,000 pieces in hour-long stretches. Or, if you have the time (and willpower), bang it all out in one day.

06 of 32

Enjoy Breakfast in Bed

We've all had days when we just want to stay in bed. Why not make a date out of it? Whip up breakfast together and bring your plates back to the bedroom to dine under the covers. Life-changing tip: Try dinner in bed, too.

07 of 32

Read Together

Coupe sitting on the couch reading with one another

Westend61/Getty Images

Curl up together and open those books you’ve been meaning to get to. Not all meaningful dates involve conversation, but you'll have plenty to talk about after you're done. You can even start a book club for just the two of you. Make a list of your all-time favorites, sprinkle in some new releases, and carve out time to discuss.

Add relationship books to your reading list. Highlight parts that resonate or things you'd like to try, and have a discussion together.

08 of 32

Set Up a Spa in the Living Room

Nothing beats a day of self-care. Play spa music, wear face masks, light candles, and whip up some infused water or pour Champagne to set the tone. You can purchase aromatic oils and give each other massages, or you can up the ante by hiring a masseuse to come to your home.

09 of 32

Take a Yoga Class

Stream YouTube in your living room (or backyard). Depending on your energy levels, choose from relaxing yin sessions or more active flows. End the practice with a meditation to set your intentions for the rest of the day. Pro tip: Pick up some cute activewear ahead of time.

10 of 32

Go for a Run Around the Neighborhood

Couple running outdoors near the beach

Kevin Kozicki/Getty Images

Okay, technically, this isn’t entirely at home. But you can designate a "finish line" at your front steps and stretch in the living room after. We recommend creating a shared playlist to get you pumped as you hit the pavement.

11 of 32

Chat on Your Porch

If you're lucky enough to have a porch or deck, take advantage and get some fresh air with your date. If you live in a city, a stoop or rooftop will work, too! Grab some wine or snacks and make a picnic out of it. You might be amazed at how much you notice about your neighborhood.

12 of 32

Perfect Your Cornhole Skills

Two people are all you need for a night of friendly competition. Practice makes perfect with a backyard set, but you can play indoors, too. Up the ante with a little wager like, "The winner gets to choose the takeout place for dinner" or "the loser does the laundry."

13 of 32

Watch a Comedy Special

Couple watching something on TV and laughing together

Witthaya Prasongsin/Getty Images

Nothing is better than seeing your loved one laugh. Bonus: It can help mitigate any awkwardness if your relationship is still in the early stages. Netflix is an absolute gold mine for comedy specials—you might even gain a few inside jokes.

14 of 32

Create the Perfect Playlist

Have a dance party in your living room (be sure to include one slow song!). Make it extra romantic by curating a playlist of significant tunes throughout your relationship and let all the feels take over.

15 of 32

Install Flower Boxes in the Windows

Not only is this date fun, but it's also functional. The best part? You get to watch the fruits of your labor grow in tandem with your relationship.

16 of 32

Plan a Picnic

Couple enjoying a picnic on a rooftop

Carsten Goerling/Getty Images

Spread out a blanket and serve the ultimate cheese board—it works even in your living room. Light candles to set the mood. If cheese doesn't get you going, order your favorite takeout instead.

17 of 32

Build a Living Room Fort

This is fun, regardless of age, and can be the perfect comfy spot for a Netflix binge. Make sure to have snacks on hand—and tons of pillows and blankets for cuddling.

18 of 32

Dress Up for a Fancy Dinner

That just happens to be waiting in your kitchen. Dressing up for a special date night will not only make you feel more confident but will also emphasize that this isn't just any ordinary dinner at home. If you cook it together ahead of time, you'll have even more time to bond.

19 of 32

Paint and Sip

Couple enjoying a painting class together

SDI Productions/Getty Images

Buy a couple of canvases and some paint, and then pop open your favorite bottle. Bonus points for crafting a fruit bowl as the painting subject, too. There are plenty of ways to make this date-night idea a little spicier, but we'll let your imagination take the wheel.

20 of 32

Set Up a Projector in the Backyard

Watch your favorite movie under the stars, or play your wedding video or a montage of clips you've taken together. You can even enjoy them from the aforementioned fort for even more fun.

21 of 32

Design a Gallery Wall

Finally print out your favorite photos and arrange them with framed concert tickets, letters, and other mementos. It can serve as the ultimate scrapbook of your relationship, and you'll relive every moment together as you put them up.

22 of 32

Cook a Meal From a Favorite Trip

Couple happily cooking together in the kitchen

Jordi Salas/Getty Images

Make homemade pasta based on a beloved vacation in Italy or tacos from a recent California getaway. It may not taste exactly like the real thing, but it will bring back all of your happy memories. Complete the scene by playing on-theme music and even dressing the part.

23 of 32

Stream a Movie Marathon

In lieu of the usual Netflix fare, grab the remote and watch an entire movie series instead. Crank out Harry PotterStar WarsThe Avengers, or Pirates of the Caribbean, just to name a few. There's nothing wrong with watching some old favorites.

24 of 32

Learn a New Skill Together

Learn to play one song on a guitar, knit a square for a future scarf, perfect your knife skills, or even learn a fun magic trick. There are tons of virtual classes you can take together and have ongoing date nights for the duration of the course. Plus, you're guaranteed to get some laughs out of it.

25 of 32

Throw a Two-Person Party

Couple kissing surrounded by balloons

Betsie Van Der Meer/Getty Images

String lights over the patio, crank music from the speakers, cook some barbecue, and make yourselves a pitcher of sangria. Who says you need guests to have this kind of fun?

26 of 32

Eat Pizza in Bed

Pizza is always a good idea, and eating it in bed in your robes is even better. So order from your favorite local takeout place and don't worry about getting any pizza grease on the sheets.

27 of 32

Have a Game Night

Stay in your pajamas, pull out your favorite board game, prepare a snack platter (or order wings), and stash the devices far, far away. Not much of a gamer? Try some steamier alternatives like truth-or-dare cards or foreplay dice.

28 of 32

Take a Virtual Vacation

Couple enjoying coffee while watching something on laptop

Vladimir Vladimirov/Getty Images

Nothing beats traveling with your partner, but if you're stuck in your hometown, you can still satisfy that wanderlust. Reminisce on vacations past or start planning your next trip. Life hack: Your brain produces the same mood-boosting chemicals when planning a trip as when actually going on one.

29 of 32

Order In for Dinner

Give takeout an upgrade. Instead of the classic pizza or Chinese food delivery, opt for a high-class spread from an upscale restaurant. Order a few appetizers, entrees, and sides—and don't forget about dessert!

30 of 32

Recreate Your First Date

If you can't revisit the place where your romance began, you can replicate it. Did your first date happen over after-work drinks? When the clock strikes 5 p.m., get your S.O. in the kitchen and sip the same drinks you bonded over. Or maybe you chatted over tacos and margaritas? Then put that on the menu!

31 of 32

Conduct a Beer or Wine Tasting

Couple having an at-home wine tasting

Arno Images/Getty Images

You don't need to visit a brewery to get your craft beer fix. Buy a few bottles of beer or wine and pour your own flights. You may just discover a new favorite brew from the comfort of your own home.

32 of 32

Subscribe to a Home-Date Service

Nowadays, there is a delivery service for practically everything—including date night. Enter DateBox Club, a monthly subscription service that delivers date-night materials to your doorstep. Who doesn't love an impromptu date?

Related Stories