I’ve been dating my girlfriend for six years now and if there’s one thing I can tell those of you who are newly dating – find cheap date options. Believe, if I could, I would treat her every single time we go out. But, I’m a young man in his mid 20’s who isn’t in the position to ball out. Even if I were, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to save a little money!

IKEA

Who woulda thought, but IKEA is dope for a cheap date, particularly if you live with your partner. Find some inspiration for your home while walking through this Swedish furniture mecca. Need a snack? No problem, with $0.75 hot dogs and $0.50 cinnamon rolls you’ll have enough carbs pumping through your system to power through. And If you head in the morning you both can enjoy a pretty good breakfast for around $2.00 (Blessed). Don’t forget those Swedish meatballs either.

Price: $1.50 – $600.00 (oops, we bought a bed)

Picnic

Tried and true cheap date option, picnics are perfect for summer time. Toronto has parks all over the city that are perfect for picnics. Pack a lunch or pick something up in the neighbourhood. Keep a blanket in your car too, if you ever come across a cute park in a different neighbourhood it’s great to be able to post up and enjoy the scenery.

Price: Price of groceries – How much do you feel like dropping on lunch today?

Bike Ride

With Toronto set to expand their bike paths across the city, biking has been never been a more popular way to see the city. If you don’t have a bike, no worries, Toronto has bike rental shops all over the city! The easiest option for renting is Toronto’s bike sharing program. Just pick up a bike at one of the terminals and leave it at another station when you’re done.

Tip: The new waterfront trail is probably the best for going on a date. Separated bike lanes and minimal pedestrian traffic make for a more relaxing ride.

Price – $7.00 for a 24 hour day pass.

Beach

Who needs a cottage when you can head to the beach! Toronto’s beaches are lit during the summer time. Lake Ontario starts to really warm around mid-July. Hit up a Walmart or Dollarama and pick up some cheap beach toys before you go or bring a towel and just enjoy the sun. There’s always an ice cream truck or snack bar around if you need refreshments.

Locations: Cherry Beach, Sugar, Kew Gardens, Hanlan’s Point, Ashbridge’s Bay, The Bluffs,

Centre Island

Price: Free – $20

I always forget about Centre island. Growing up as a kid all we really did was go to that cheesy amusement park with the small petting zoo (Anyone else still remember that jingle). As I’ve gotten older I’ve learned to appreciate how special it is. The ferry leaves from downtown every 30 mins. Once you’re there you can either walk the island, cycle along the trails, play frisbee golf, paddle board or enjoy the beach.

Price: $7.50 (Single adult Ferry Ride) or skip the ferry and take a canoe!

Outdoor Movies

Nothing’s cheaper than free, and over the last couple of summers, local Toronto neighbourhoods have played host to a growing number a free movie series. Each location offers something different, but most films are classics or recently released on DVD.

Locations: Christie Pits Film Fest, Free Flicks atHarbourfront, Sail-In – CinemaCity Cinema, St. James Park  You can sit with us at TIFF

Price: Free

Docks Entertainment complex

While not the cheapest option on the list, the Docks Entertainment complex is awesome! The only drive through in Toronto proper is also home to a driving range and mini-putt.

Price:

Drive Through – $15.00/ticket $25.00 on Sunday’s for the whole car, doesn’t matter how many people (perfect for double dates)

Driving Range – Monday – Friday $14 per bucket 2 for $25, Weekend $16 per bucket, 2 for $28 Senior (60+) $9 per bucket BEFORE noon 2 buckets for $16

Mini-Putt – $8 for adults (Weekdays) $9 for adults (weekend)

Open Houses

It’s never too early to plan, especially when the average price for a Toronto single detached home is $1.28 million [FML 🙁 🙁 ] you should always keep an eye out. Open houses are great, even if you’re not even close to buying a property. Most realtors understand that most of the people who come through are just looky-loos anyways. You can find out times and neighbourhoods here –

 

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