How to Have Spontaneous Dates + 10 Spontaneous Date Ideas

Hi friends, I’m Sadie, Amberly’s photographer. You’re probably wondering what I’m doing here. Well, I’m not here to talk to you about photography. I’m here to talk to you about spontaneous date nights. 

My schedule is… well, psycho. I have a full-time job as well as my photography business, so I spend A LOT of time either shooting or editing, so we try to make simple and spontaneous dates are usually how our dates go. Even though our dates are usually spontaneous, we make them a priority. 

spontaneous date ideas

Just because a date is spontaneous doesn’t mean it has to be frantic or stressful or even unplanned. (Sounds counterproductive right?)  In fact, planning your spontaneous date nights can be a really important factor in having a spontaneous date night. Parker and I have a list of dates that we would like to go on a some point and then we go from there. We made our initial “date bucket list” when we were dating and then have added to it as we’ve crossed things off or thought of new ideas. 

Something important to note about spontaneous date nights is that not every week should be a spontaneous date. We do planned dates about every other week. Sometimes our planned date nights are from our date bucket list and sometimes they are different planned dates. Usually those different planned dates are seasonal— like going to see Christmas Lights or going to watch fireworks on the 4th of July or going to a Jazz game or going to a movie that we’ve been wanting to see. 

salt lake wall murals

10 Spontaneous Date Ideas

Something else to remember is that spontaneous dates do not have to break the bank! In my opinion, they definitely shouldn’t! Some of my favorite date nights we’ve had have cost $20 or less! Here are 10 of my favorite spontaneous date night ideas we’ve done recently:

$10 Surprise. We both got $10 to spend and we had to surprise the other with what would be happening on the date. Parker was in charge of dinner and I was in charge of the activity. Parker chose Pizza Rolls, Taquitos, Cheetos & our favorite sodas to drink. For the activity, we had a lego building contest and then we dug for dinosaur bones & ancient artifacts in a mini treasure chest from the target dollar spot. 

Photo Booth + Favorite Sodas. For this date, we just went to a photo booth at the mall and then stopped at our favorite soda shop (the gas station would work too!). We took silly pictures and then drank our sodas and just had the best time chatting.

Skipping Rocks. We live right near a river and so we frequently go down to the river to skip rocks and chat. If you don’t have a river or lake near you, try skipping ice cubes on the road or grass. (It’s harder than it sounds…)

surprise date

Lego Building Contest. (This was part of our $10 surprise date, but could be a spontaneous date of its own) Just grab a bunch of Legos and go to town. See who can build the best thing, who can build something the fastest and who can build the highest tower. 

Lunch Date to Costco. One of our FAVORITE dates (lunch OR dinner) is to the Costco Food Court. If you’ve never had their pizza or hot dogs, well, you need to get yourself to the nearest Costco as soon as physically possible. Plus, you really can’t beat their prices. We also enjoy people watching on these dates and cart scanning. (It’s always interesting to see what people buy at Costco!)

Sno Cone Crawl. Especially during the summer, there are sno cone shacks on every corner. One of my dream dates is to do a sno cone crawl to see which sno cone shack has the best piña colada sno cone around. In the winter, we often frequent our local Bahama Bucks for a sno cone. 

Seasonal Dates. This one isn’t anything specific, but there are always things that only happen during specific seasons. Drive-in Movies, Ice Castles, Hiking, Sledding, Snowman Building, Hot Chocolate + Ice Skating, Backwards Trick-or-Treating (drop off candy/treats to your neighbors)... you catch the drift. 

lego building contest

Splurge Date. About every 6 months, we have a “splurge date” where we do something fun that is for sure going to be memorable that we definitely wouldn’t just do on a regular night. Our last splurge date was to one of the Jazz Playoff Games. We got the cheapest tickets we could find (literally the second to last row…) but had the BEST time. We shared some food from one of the food vendors and cheered our hearts out. It’s definitely one of my favorite dates that we’ve ever been on.

$5 Tuesdays. Our favorite movie theater (heyyyyyy megaplex!!!) does $5 Tuesdays. When we go to these movies, we always bring a snack from home (buy candy from Walmart, it is WAY cheaper), buy a mini $1 popcorn and then fill our MegaMugs for $1.50 each. I also always bring a blanket so we can cuddle and be those people at the movies. (jk. We don’t cuddle. Parker does not like PDA.) But I do bring a blanket and get cozy!

Overlook the City. This date is one of our most iconic dates and definitely a tradition. I love city overlooks so we have made an effort to find as many as we can. When we go do this, we typically bring a blanket and then we just sit and chat for a while until we’re ready to drive back down. (This is NOT a hike date. I repeat, this is NOT a hike date.) 

arcade date

Whatever you decide to put on your Spontaneous Date Night Bucket List, I hope those things bring you closer as a couple. I hope that you make an effort to get to know your spouse better everyday. Dating Parker is my favorite decision I’ve ever made. Being with him— really being with him— is when I am most happy and myself. Our spontaneous dates have stretched us, helped us create memories and most importantly, reminds me of the giddy love that we had when we first started dating.

What are you putting on your Spontaneous Date Night Bucket List?

Sadie Banks Photography
Spontaneous date night in your marriage, plus spontaneous date ideas