Having a regular date night can save your marriage. Seriously.
Going out for a date with your spouse or partner on a regular basis strengthens your bond as a couple and can reignite romance and passion between you.
According to a study by the Marriage Foundation, couples who have a monthly date night are 14% less likely to break up.
Another recent study by The National Marriage Project called “The Date Night Opportunity” confirmed that date nights foster stronger relationships and marriages.
They cited five specific benefits from couples regularly going on date nights:
1. Improved Communication
Couples are less distracted by children, work, and other responsibilities, giving them the chance to talk about important topics and mutual pursuits and goals.
2. More Novelty
Couples in long-term relationships become habituated to each other and can grow bored in the relationship, taking one another for granted. Date night adds excitement and novelty to the connection which leads to more satisfaction in the relationship.
3. Heightened Romance
Date nights can help rekindle the romantic and sexual spark in the relationship when they engage in romantic and intimate outings together.
4. Stronger Commitment
Date nights solidify your couple-ness and the connection just the two of you share. It makes you feel more committed as you strengthen communication and romance. Going out together signifies to other people as well that the two of you are a committed couple.
5. Stress Relief
Stress is one of the main culprits of relationship conflict that can threaten your closeness. Going on date nights gives you an outlet for relieving stress, as it allows couples to step away from the challenges of daily life. During date nights, couples can provide love and support to one another that is also stress-relieving.
Now that you know regular date nights are beneficial to your relationship, the next step is figuring out what to do on these special nights out.
Are you looking for something a bit more exciting or unique than just going out to dinner and a movie?
While this classic dating idea is just fine, it doesn't necessarily provide you with the opportunity to create long-lasting memories.
You may want to experience togetherness on your date in a way you can't do sitting quietly in front of a movie screen.
If you have been in your relationship or marriage for a bit of time, you are probably running out of fun date ideas. You also may need to switch things up and try something new.
Here are 13 fun and creative date ideas for couples:
1. Go treasure hunting.
Do you have consignment shops around you or thrift stores?
You never know what you are going to find in those places!
Take an afternoon to go through your local thrift shops, and see if you can find anything fun to buy. If nothing else, you will likely see some odd things that you can talk about later.
2. Go to a state park.
Grab a picnic and find your closest state park.
Not only can you walk around and enjoy your leisurely lunch, but you will also be able to see wildlife and other natural things that your park has to offer.
One fun date idea for couples is to learn the tragic tales of the dearly departed with a ghost tour.
Many cities offer ghosts tours of some sort that involve local haunted houses. Find out what secret stories lie within your city and have a fun date night with your significant other.
This is a great date idea during October when it's close to Halloween.
4. Play a few rounds of mini golf.
If you enjoy some friendly competition with your spouse, then set up a mini golf date.
The great thing about mini golf is that you can spend the time interacting with your partner while you are playing. You can talk about anything, whether it is related to the game or not.
You might decide that the winner of the round has to offer something fun and sexy to the loser. Then you have something to look forward to when date night is over.
5. Go to a museum.
There are so many different types of museums to suit varied interests — from art museums in every state to the International Banana Museum in California.
You and your partner can spend hours wandering through a museum, learning new things together and appreciating history, art, fashion, nature, science and so many other disciplines.
Take your time going through the museum, and grab lunch on the way out so you can talk about everything you saw.
6. Go bowling.
Bowling seems like an activity of the past, but don't you remember how much fun you used to have doing it?
It doesn't matter how good (or bad) you are at bowling, you will have a great time having a date that involves a little friendly competition and ugly shoes.
7. Do some volunteer work together.
Giving back to your community is a great way to feel good about yourself and to show your commitment to cause as a couple.
Take your partner to the local soup kitchen to prepare food for less fortunate people, or go to the local animal shelter and volunteer to walk the dogs.
When you volunteer together, you reinforce a shared value that can strengthen your closeness. You will both leave the date feeling satisfied and happy.
8. Find the sunset.
Do you live near water or some beautiful mountains?
Find the best place in your city to watch the sunset, and spend some quality time with your partner enjoying the natural view.
Bring along some light snacks and a bottle of wine to make it even more memorable.
9. Cook together.
On a rainy night when you don't want to get out, you can create a date night in the comfort of your home. If you have children, see if they can stay with friends or grandparents for the night.
Spend some time looking for a delicious recipe that is fun but easy, and prepare it from scratch together.
Turn on some music, open a bottle of wine, and chop and stir together. Create a romantic setting with candles, a beautifully set table, and dim lights.
Don't rush through the meal. Savor the food and enjoy holding hands and having a long conversation.
10. Go out dancing.
Find a dancing spot in town that isn’t just a regular nightclub crowded with hundreds of people
Try something new together like the salsa, line dancing, the tango, or the waltz. You might even join a class or dance club. Dancing builds confidence, coordination, and closeness with your partner.
When you dance together, you also spend a long time touching and holding one another which enhances intimacy.
It's great to learn something new together that you can use on future dates. Having fun together while being active and listening to great music makes for a perfect date.
11. Go wine tasting.
If you and your partner appreciate wine and are interested in winemaking, go to a local winery or wine store, or take an organized wine tour together.
Many wineries plan special events with food parings and lectures on various wines that make this date fun and educational.
If you prefer craft beer, try out some local craft breweries and sample the beers that they have. Just make sure to call a cab if you end up having a bit too much fun.
12. Go bike riding.
When the weather is nice, you can take an early evening bike ride around your city or on local trails. Look for leisurely rides so you can ride side by side and talk as you go.
Explore areas you've never been before, and plan for stops along the way to sit and talk or share a picnic dinner you carry along in a backpack.
13. Take a stroll down memory lane.
Take your partner on a ride and drive past all of your old houses, your old school, and even the places you used to work.
This will help your partner paint a mental picture of who you were before you met and understand a bit more about where you came from.
When you're done, ask your partner to do the same so you can see his old memories as well.
There are so many fun things that you can do on a date. Depending on your budget and your interests, you are sure to find something on this list that will create a lasting memory for you and your partner.
The most important point is that you go on regular dates. Don't allow the weekend to creep up on you with nothing planned. Protect and enhance your relationship by making date night a priority as a couple.