The air is crisp and the leaves are starting to turn colors. Summer gave way to fall readily this year and the weather is begging for you to go out and enjoy it.
While summer may have been packed with awesome dating opportunities, you’ll find no shortage of fun things to do in the fall. What may be coming up a little short, however, is the money in your bank account. Thanks to pandemic shut downs and the cost of daily life, funds may be running a little low.
Online dating is great because it’s not only easy, but it’s cheap. You can talk and spend time with someone online without the costs that come along with fancy restaurants and upscale coffee. But to grow in a relationship, it’s important to spend time together in person.
If you’re on a budget and want to have fun with a significant other this fall, try out these totally free date ideas.
1. Enjoy a fall festival
Festivals in fall were already fun before COVID hit, but now that gathering outdoors is safer than gathering inside, festivals have just upped their appeal!
You can find a festival almost anywhere once the fall hits, and it is usually free to get in. You’ll want to take a little spending cash just in case. There’s nothing like a hot apple cider on a chilly day or a funnel cake to tide you over until dinner.
But even if you don’t spend a penny, a fall festival is still a great place to take a date. You can take pictures next to the pumpkin patch and go for a walk in the corn maze. You can also sit on a bench and talk about life while watching people of all ages enjoy the day.
Walk around and look at the different displays put out by local vendors and spin a wheel to win a free pen or bottle of hand sanitizer. You may even win a free hot chocolate on your way out!
2. Sign up for an activity at your local church
Churches of all denominations enjoy inviting the public out for fall happenings and get togethers. Trunk or Treats near Halloween and bazars with raffles and games are in full affect this time of year.
Church activities can be a great Catholic dating activity! Fall themed dinners and group rosaries are some of the many things that might be offered at parishes near you.
Not seeing any fun activities in your bulletin? Look around! It is perfectly okay to church hop when it’s in the name of social fun!
Just because you’re a Catholic dating, doesn’t mean you can stop by a festival hosted by a Baptist Church. One of my family’s favorite activities each fall is an outdoor event that our neighbors’ church puts on every year. Pony rides, pizza, games, face painting—and it’s all free!
3. Enjoy a movie outdoors
Since we don’t have to contend with mosquitoes or pollen anymore, many parks offer free showings of outdoor movies in the fall. These are great date ideas especially if you have been online dating and you’re looking for a casual spot to meet up.
Safe, open, outdoors and in public, movies on the green can be a fun way to spend an evening. If you want to extend the evening, get there early and bring some activities. A couple things you’ll definitely want to pack are:
- Picnic basket of dinner or snacks
- A blanket or chairs to sit on
- Cards to play while waiting for the movie to start
- Wine (if it’s allowed!)
- A Frisbee to throw if there is an open area
The outdoors is the place to be right now so there’s no better way to catch a movie than this!
4. Have a picnic in a park
Weekends in the fall were created for afternoon picnics in the park. When the sun is out and the air is crisp, it’s the perfect time to lay out a blanket and take in the day.
The great thing about picnics is that you can make them whatever you want. If you love board games, pack a couple along with lunch. Readers? Bring a book for each of you, or just lay back and read out loud.
Picnics are also the perfect setting for couples that are moving from online dating to in person dating. There is no noise to talk over when getting to know each other better, but you’re still in a public area.
In the same way, parks are a great place for Catholic dating couples to spend quality time. Worried about too much down time? Pack a Frisbee and find a park with Frisbee golf. The great thing about dating in the fall is that there is no shortage of fun activities to do. Parks are full of opportunities.
5. Carve pumpkins together
You’re most likely going to buy a pumpkin or two this fall anyway, right? Instead of carving pumpkins solo, invite your date over and make it an event!
This date can be with just the two of you, or include several friends if you’re feeling especially social. Looking for some great ways to make a pumpkin carving gathering really come together?
- Have a coffee or apple cider bar where everyone brings an item to contribute (i.e. cinnamon sticks, instant latte packets, etc).
- Put together a fall playlist to have going in the background.
- Light a fire in your fire pit or fireplace to give it that extra special ambiance.
- Have everyone bring a pumpkin (or two!) and tools to carve and decorate.
Sometimes it’s the simplest and most traditional activities that can make for the best date ideas. The fact that they’re free (or incredibly cheap) makes them that much better!
Carving pumpkins is as fall as it gets, and doing it with people you care about it is the cherry on top!
Save your pennies
Dating doesn’t have to be expensive. In fact, some of the absolute best date ideas are completely free!
A fall festival or picnic in the park is the perfect backdrop for a fun filled day in which you can spend time together. Whether you are moving from online dating to in person or are already at that stage, the above activities are sure to be a hit.
This is the time of year where Catholic dating really becomes fun too. Church bazaars, young adults gatherings and much more are open and available to you.
Take advantage of the crisp, beautiful days and embrace everything this season has to offer!
Ready to meet someone online and ask them out on a date this fall? Download the Catholic Singles app today. We’ll help you create an online dating profile in less than ten minutes. Then, you can chat with other single Catholics online for free!