Date Night Ideas for Every Budget

The ultimate foodie date night for every budget

Date night ideas for every budget

We know the temptation is always there – why go out when you can just as easily order up Deliveroo, spend three hours scrolling through Netflix and finally end up side by side on the couch, enjoying each others company (read: looking at your phones). But we say no! Romance is not dead, it just needs to be reignited with the real love of our lives – food. And wine. Always wine.

Zero money. Zip, zilch, nada

Ok, you’re going to have to lay your inhibitions aside and do some creative thinking here. If you’re strategic, you can get at least 2 dates a year out of our list of delicious birthday freebies. The rest of the year? Swap date night for date morning and hit the Rocklea or Jan Powers Markets for a sampling session – and start practicing your best interested looking face to get multiple samples.

Under $30

Hopefully you have a few dollars on your GoCard for a weekend trip to South Bank – or better yet, you’ve reached those blessed free trips after a week of travel. Grab yourself some takeaway fish and chips from RQF and settle yourself on the River Quay grass for live tunes and lawn games every Sunday afternoon. You can even splurge on a $5 bottle of cheap plonk from the bottle-o and bring it along – the whole area is licensed for BYO. And if your dates to fussy for cheap wine, best break it off now – this relationship is never going to work.

Under $50

Ok, as long as you don’t go crazy on the French cheese and gourmet crackers (water crackers are 90 cents a pop, FYI), you can totally nab a hefty selection of picnic worthy salads and nibbles from New Farm’s Botanica and the New Farm Deli for less than $50. Grab one of those bottles of wine you got for Chrissy and take it down to New Farm Park on a Friday afternoon by the river, followed by free comedy at Brisbane Powerhouse, which happens every Friday at 6pm.

Under $75

We’ve done the math – it’s possible to get in a round of 9 wacky mini golf holes at Holy Moly and an epic feast plus cocktails at Heya Bar for less than $75. ‘How???’ we hear you cry! Just schedule your date for a Tuesday and take advantage of Heya’s half price eats, duh. Holy Moly for two = $31. Cheeseburger spring rolls, karaage chicken, kimchi fries and two frosty fruit cocktails = $41.50. Still having change in your pocket at the end of the night = Priceless.

Under $100

Guys, we hate to break it to you, but you’ve been spending hundreds on gold class cinemas for way too long. We’re going to let you in on a little secret – Blue Room Cinebar offers the same experience for $19.50 a ticket. True story. With their menu of handmade pizzas, cheese platters, beef nachos and cocktails you might wind up over budget – but it’s so worth it.

Under $200

Alright, you’ve saved your pennies, given up café coffees for a few weeks and even rode your bike to work a few times – you’re ready to spend it all on bae for one delicious night of dreamy romance. One venue isn’t enough for this affair – you need two. But to save an uber trip, start with a glam old world dinner at Nickel, then take an elevator to the rooftop, where Eleven’s sky high cocktails await. Boys: tell her to wear the Camilla.

You’re practically printing money

Soooo, do you come here often? But really, we need someone to fund our eating habits, so call us maybe? When you do, we’re definitely going to suggest a long dinner at three hatted Esquire – THE place to go for Brisbane’s most exquisite fare (not to mention views). Why a long dinner? Because with a 12-25 course degustation to get through, you’re going to be there a little while. Also, don’t drive if you’re getting the matched wines. You have been warned. Just don’t go bacon anyone’s heart. Words by Ranyhyn Akui

See more: Valentine’s Day date ideas