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50 Ways of Being Romantic With Little Money

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As a follow up to my post on impressing a girl when you have little money, I mainly focused on how to make good first impressions. However, maybe you finally managed to get that girl (trust me this CAN happen) and you’ve been going out for awhile. Well, thanks to Zen Habits, I present to you 50 ways of being cheap, but romantic.

Look for little, inexpensive ways to be romantic, and it will pay off for your relationship in innumerable ways.

Why inexpensive? Well, you could rent a limo and take your love to a snooty French restaurant, or whisk him or her off to a trip to the snow-capped Alps, or rent a stadium and have the Three Tenors sing love songs for you while the New York Philharmonic plays in the background. I don’t know about you, but I can’t afford to do that kind of stuff more than a few times a month. The rest of the time, I have to resort to cheaposity.

Before we get into the list, let’s look at a few notes on how to use the list:

  1. Weekly dates. I recommend you have a date at least once a week with your partner. It doesn’t have to be an expensive one, but at least find some way to spend a couple hours time together. If you’ve got kids, like I do, find a babysitter.
  2. Communicate. Romantic gestures don’t take the place of real communication. Take time to talk about your goals, your dreams, your plans for the future, your current lives, things you’re happy about, things you love about the other person, things you’d like to work on, things you’re grateful for.
  3. Inspiration. This list contains a lot of obvious stuff — you could probably come up with twice as many good ideas yourself. But the list doesn’t aim for originality — it aims to be an inspiration. Pick and choose some good ideas, or use it to spark some of your own. Sometimes we just need a little reminder.
  4. Forget Valentines. Boycott Valentine’s Day, as it makes people think they should be romantic on special occasions. Instead, pick one of these ideas and do it any day of the week — no need for a special occasion.

OK, enough talk. Let’s look at some ways to be romantic without breaking your budget (note to my mom: don’t read this, as there are a couple of sexy-time things later on):

  1. Write a poem.
  2. Cook a romantic dinner.
  3. Give a full-body massage.
  4. Pack a sunset picnic.
  5. Pick wildflowers on the way home.
  6. Burn a CD with love songs.
  7. Give dark chocolates.
  8. Read poetry together.
  9. Prepare strawberries with fondue chocolate.
  10. Snuggle together on a rainy day.
  11. Leave little love notes everywhere.
  12. Send a love email every day.
  13. Take a moonlit walk on the beach.
  14. Snuggle together while watching romantic movies (Casablanca, Audrey Hepburn are my favs).
  15. Get good wine, watch shooting stars.
  16. Take a bath together (use bubbles!).
  17. Bring home good coffee or a decadent sweet.
  18. Take a walk down memory lane — visit some of the special places from your early days of dating.
  19. Make warm chocolate cake for dessert.
  20. Make a scrapbook with photos, mementos, and little notes from you lives together.
  21. Kiss in the rain.
  22. Ride a ferris wheel.
  23. Sneak away from a party and make out.
  24. Bring home great take-out, and light some candles.
  25. Fix something or fix up the house just to make your partner happy.
  26. Slow dance to romantic music.
  27. Take a nap together.
  28. Kiss slowly, touching his or her back and neck and nape — slowly.
  29. Make a list of everything you love about him or her.
  30. Write a love letter.
  31. Clip or email things that make you think of him or her, every day.
  32. Go to a movie, ignore the movie, and make out like teen-agers.
  33. Groom yourself, and try to look good for your partner.
  34. Take some quiet time and talk about your day.
  35. Write little notes, one for each way he or she drives you crazy.
  36. Feed each other grapes.
  37. Recreate your partner’s favorite romantic movie scene.
  38. Pretend you’re going on a first date — show up at the door with flowers, all dressed up, with your car washed and cleaned, looking spiffy. Recreate the first time.
  39. Create a little box with a bunch of your partner’s favorite things inside.
  40. Paint each other with flavored body paint. Be creative!
  41. Try some sexy role-playing. Get dressed up, be daring, have fun.
  42. Give a little token to your partner to wear, and say it’s to remind him or her all day that you love them.
  43. Sing a favorite song to him or her. Only do this if you can sing fairly well.
  44. Have dinner on the roof, with some candles. This doesn’t work if your roof slopes sharply.
  45. Hold hands, and walk somewhere with lots of pretty lights.
  46. Say I love you. In a different way, every day.
  47. Blindfold your partner. Use a feather. Slowly.
  48. Declare your love, very publicly.
  49. Fruit or berries and freshly made whipped cream.
  50. Play Sade. Do what comes naturally. Slowly.
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20 Responses to “50 Ways of Being Romantic With Little Money”

  1. Nacho on February 22nd, 2008 7:17 pm

    Meh. Here’s a better idea: Make more money than any other male she is likely to meet.

    Do that, and she will stay madly in love no matter how much of an ass you are. (Assuming there is no pre-nup.)

  2. joey on February 23rd, 2008 2:17 am

    nacho: i think you’re kinda cynical, buddy. not all girls go solely for money. once in a while one will love you for you.

    i like this list, a lot.

  3. hah on February 24th, 2008 5:00 pm

    joey’s right only 90pct of women care about money. the other 10pct want to live in a trailer or section 8 housing.

  4. Tara on February 25th, 2008 3:29 pm

    Thank you, Joey. At least someone still has faith in humanity. And shivalry.

  5. ninja on February 25th, 2008 5:30 pm

    “Meh. Here’s a better idea: Make more money than any other male she is likely to meet.”

    lol, well i think that’s meant more like a joke, and yeah, it’s a cool list

  6. nig nog on February 25th, 2008 8:58 pm

    Hmm…My boyfriend is the ultimate romantic. Picture this:

    2am, in the back of a Toyota Corolla because our 2 friends were in the front, on the drive thru line for McDonalds. He pulls me in close and whispers into my ear, “After I eat like 20 nuggets, I’m gonna fuck you really hard.”

    That’s my boy! And I love him.

  7. mary on March 4th, 2008 12:34 pm

    heres another, dress up formally for no reason and go out to say…burger king. my man really likes seeing other men check me out

  8. Kevlene on March 4th, 2008 7:22 pm

    Fucking after nuggets is not my idea of romance. I’m glad for this post though. I hope men read it and try some of the ideas. I have a very sweet boyfriend, and I’m very grateful for it.

  9. Nevi on March 5th, 2008 1:55 am

    To Nacho->
    Not all girls are going after the gold.You can actually meet girls that want ou for your personality.Aint that something? ;)

  10. Pissed on March 5th, 2008 2:15 am

    I tried that nugget thing with my girlfriend last night and she just slapped me.

  11. MarshallStaxx on March 6th, 2008 4:58 am

    For a romantic treat, the other night I took my girlfriend up the OXO Tower. My entree was amazing, and I think she enjoyed it too.

  12. on March 8th, 2008 7:02 pm

    Good suggestions

  13. saturdayskids on March 12th, 2008 1:51 am

    There’s chivalry (or “shivalry” as someone earlier said) and there’s also being a fucking ASS.

    “I hope men read it and try some of the ideas”

    I hope women read this and try some of the ideas, too, jackass. Why does it have to be just men? Give me a goddamn break.

  14. 50 Ways of Being Romantic With Little Money - Total Format Forums on March 12th, 2008 8:40 am

    [...] 50 Ways of Being Romantic With Little Money Look for little, inexpensive ways to be romantic, and it will pay off for your relationship in innumerable ways. Why inexpensive? Well, you could rent a limo and take your love to a snooty French restaurant, or whisk him or her off to a trip to the snow-capped Alps, or rent a stadium and have the Three Tenors sing love songs for you while the New York Philharmonic plays in the background. I don

  15. j on March 13th, 2008 2:24 pm

    Brilliant. I will suggest these for my partner to do for me asap.

    Feminist bitch.

  16. Raja on March 15th, 2008 7:18 am

    As nacho say… Money!!! thats the ultimate thing…

    hahaha fucking after 20 McDonalds nuggets - is your BF American??? just curious….

  17. drstenso on March 18th, 2008 7:39 pm

    here’s one that works quite well… but isnt on the really cheap list.
    asian performing arts restaurants.
    your chef does tricks with your food in front of you. its awsome and romantic

  18. Drake on April 13th, 2008 5:34 am

    To saturdayskids

    I hate to break it to you, but guys aren’t going to appreciate is as much if you bring them wild flowers home, or read poetry to them. Granted not all of them are just guys things, but most of the list only really works one way.

  19. rysee on April 14th, 2008 3:38 pm

    i know my girlfriend would disaggree with alot of this list, most of it is cliche and unimaginative

  20. loro on May 22nd, 2008 10:24 pm

    um, drake: it says “read poetry _together_”, not “read poetry to him/her.” It’s like #41 — only works if both partners are into it. As for flowers… really? I would *love* for the girl I’m with to bring me flowers, because it would be different, interesting, and would show that they went out of their way to actually try to think of something fun rather than fall back on something easy. I would be laughing about it for hours, and every time I saw them.

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