Being single has its ups and downs. On the one hand, you have infinite freedom. You can come and go as you please, without having to check in with anyone (unless you still live with Mom and Dad). You also get to focus 100% of your efforts on yourself and getting ahead career-wise, financially and just simply improving yourself to be better than you were before. But being single also has its downsides. For one, it takes more effort to find someone to go out with all of the time as you don’t have a significant other. And of course, being single and dating costs money. In this post, I am going to show you some tricks I used when I was single to help keep my budget in check while at the same time enjoying the company of others.

5 Tips To Save Money Dating

Choose To Go Out Mid-Week

If you like to go out for dinner, try to get a date for a Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday night. I’ve found that many restaurants (not chains but independent ones) tend to offer good specials on these days of the week since they tend to be slower than the weekends. While you won’t be able to go out on these nights exclusively, mixing them into your routine can help you defer some of the cost associated with eating out.

Just take a little bit of time and call some restaurants or check their website to see if they offer any good deals. While you won’t look bad for going out on a day mid-week to a place that offers good specials, don’t cross the line and use a coupon; this is a no-no ñ at least until you’ve gone out on a few dates with the same person.

Think Outside The Box

You don’t have to go out to dinner for your dates. In fact, the more creative you are with your date ideas, the more you will stand out from the crowd and ideally score some brownie points. So take some time to figure out other good options for dates.

I made a list of all of the great things there are to do around me and then used it as a reference when dating. When making your list, be sure to think things through all the way. This means that opting for a movie on the first date is a bad call since you want to get to know each other a little bit. Instead, go for some coffee and save the movies for the fourth date.

To help you get started with your brainstorming, check out this great list of cheap date ideas.

Split The Tab

Personally, I always picked up the tab at the end of the date. It is just how I was raised. But times are changing and many women prefer to pick up a portion of the tab. At the end of the day, it is your call with how you want to proceed with this.

A happy middle ground I’ve found others using is to split the bill when it is obvious there will not be a second date. If neither party is interested in seeing each other again, you each cover half the tab and go on with your lives.

Of course, if you choose to go on low cost dates, then paying for the full tab regardless shouldn’t be an issue.

Be Honest With Yourself

Another key to being smart with your money while dating is to be honest with yourself. What does this mean? It means not prolonging a relationship when you are no longer interested in it. Instead of stringing the other person along, be real with yourself and end things when you know you are no longer interested.

By doing this sooner rather than later, you save some tears and you save money by not spending money on activities with someone you have no interest in. It’s better to end things and be alone than to keep dating when you see no future together.

Final Thoughts

In the end, there are many ways you can control how much money you spend when dating. While I am all for having a great time, having a great time does not mean you have to spend hundreds of dollars on a night out. In fact, I get more out of a night in playing board games than I do from most dinners.

If you are smart, you can have a great dating life and still stick to your budget. This will allow you the best of both worlds: meeting new, interesting people and still getting ahead financially.