Summer is truly the optimal time for dating. The sun brings many more opportunities to meet people at events not usually available during the colder months–like beach BBQs, or outdoor concerts. Still, even though enjoying the warm weather is free, dates can end up being expensive. Because we believe your wallet should be the least of your worries when you’re trying to make a connection, we’ve put together a handy list of summer date ideas that don’t cost a cent.

Wander around a flea market

Dating doesn’t have to be your typical dinner and drinks. Doing something that involves immersing yourself in an interesting environment lends itself to easy, relaxed conversation. Most flea markets usually offer food and drink samples and it can be a really nice way to get to know someone – while also becoming familiar with their taste.

Check out a free summer concert or festival

So many places hold free concerts or festivals during the summer and it’s a great way to get outdoors, listen to some music and make the most of those warm summer temperatures.

Explore a new neighborhood

It’s so tempting to get stuck in a rut when it comes to date locations. The summer is a great time to discover some hidden gems that might only be a mere subway ride away! This type of date is also fun as there’s no pressure involved in ‘what to do’ and it creates a brand new memory for both of you that you’ll then associate with each other.

Pack a picnic

Not technically “free,” but it’s likely to be more cost-effective than eating out. Plus, you can get as creative or decadent as you would like with what you pack. A nice added touch is if you both bring items along. 

Go to a museum

Many museums have free exhibitions so this is an ideal option if you’re both partial to learning something new or if the weather isn’t so great. A museum date can actually be really fun–plus, the exhibition itself will immediately offer talking points. An added tip is to check online to find out if any free events are taking place too, as some galleries and museums will offer canapés or complimentary drinks!

Go on a hike or walk in nature

This not only eliminates the dreaded ‘what do I wear’ pressure but it also means you’re getting a workout in while getting to know someone! Bonus: It’s a great opportunity to take in some beautiful scenery.


This one makes for an incredibly enriching date experience and will give you both a feel-good boost. There are so many volunteering options you could look into – helping out at a food kitchen, an animal shelter or delivering meals for the elderly are a few examples. Doing things for others who are less fortunate also shows compassion and empathy in someone–so you know your date will have some favorable qualities if they’re up for it!