Top 10 Inexpensive Date Ideas in the Cold

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The winter weather doesn't have to confine you to indoor-only activities when you are planning a date with someone special. As long as you and your date bundle up properly, you can actually have a fantastic outdoor date. Choose the perfect cold-weather date based on your and your date's interests.

Winter Walk in the Park

There's a good chance your local park will be deserted on a cold winter day, allowing you and your date to enjoy a quiet stroll, hand-in-hand. Be kids again and push each other on the swings if there is a playground.

Snowy Picnic

Pack hot chocolate in mugs along with freshly made, hot sandwiches wrapped in foil. Enjoy a picnic lunch in the park, or any public green space in your area. Don't be afraid to picnic if snow is on the ground or if it is lightly snowing. Just add snow boots and an extra layer of protection and then enjoy the beauty around you.

Cold-Weather Activities

Spend an afternoon date engaged in classic winter and snow activities. Take a sled to the tallest hill in the area, for instance. If you don't have sleds, grab the lids off of your outdoor trash cans to use. You and your date can also build a snowman together or go ice skating at a nearby skating rink. Most ice skate rentals cost $5 or less.

Holiday Lights Drive

If it is the holiday season, hop in your car with your date and check out the beautiful light displays around town. Most cities and towns put up lights and a Christmas tree in the town center. Stores also have beautiful winter window displays to check out. You can also drive through the neighborhoods and admire the lights that homeowners have put up. Check to see if there is a particular street in your area known for impressive holiday light displays.


Skiing at ski resorts can be pretty pricey, even for just a day. However, some resorts also have snow tubing hills, where you slide down the ski slopes in giant inner tubes. No experience is needed and it is generally much cheaper than skiing or snowboarding, costing roughly $15 to $25 a session, depending on the resort. The use of the inner tubes is almost always included in the price.

Backyard Campfire

If you have a backyard area with a fire pit, create a winter camping experience for your date. Make s'mores and see who can tell the best ghost story, or funniest camp story. You can also pitch a tent near the fire pit and snuggle inside with your sweetie.

Holiday Winter Market

Many cities have outdoor Christmas or holiday markets that you and your date can peruse. At the market, you'll find many vendors selling a wide variety of holiday trinkets along with food vendors serving cozy winter snacks, such as warm pretzels, bakery sweets and apple cider. The two of you can also engage in the crafting and live entertainment that these markets typically offer.

Coffee Bar Crawl

Try out the three or four coffee shops in the downtown area of your city that are within walking distance of each other. You and your date can go from shop to shop sampling the different winter or holiday-themed coffee or hot chocolate drinks they have to offer, such as peppermint, cinnamon and gingerbread.

Night Ghost Tour

If you and your date love a little supernatural thrill, see if any ghost tours are offered in your area. You might be lead through a cemetery, the grounds of an old mansion or the ruins of a crumbling public building. Depending on the location, you and your date will either be creeped out together or have a good laugh at how cheesy the whole thing is. Ghost tours prices vary but typically won't run you more than $30 each.

Carriage Ride

Few things are more romantic in the winter than a carriage ride around through a picturesque park. Most carriage ride companies will offer a blanket to keep you warm and cozy in cold weather. Sleigh and carriage rides can get pretty pricey depending on the city and whether you have a tour guide. However, carriage companies almost always have promotions to lower the cost. Expect to pay anywhere from $20 to $40 for a 30-minute ride.