The College Kid’s Guide to to Cheap Dating

Stargazing 013
Stargazing (Photo credit: mdsharpe)

College is expensive. So is dating. What’s worse is dating in college. It doesn’t have to be that way, though. If you’re looking for some quality time with your honey, but you’re on a budget, here are some ideas for a free date night.

1. Go for a hike


Walking in the wilderness is always an adventure. Plus, you get to see a whole other side of your sugar-pie. They might sweat a lot. Or have a small bladder and need to stop in the woods frequently. The two of you could take your relationship to a whole new level.

2. Tour a brewery

There are countless breweries in Fort Collins and touring them is free, so grab your cutie and check them out. New Belgium, located at 500 Linden St., is a Fort Collins favorite. Sample a variety of beers and see how the beer is made. Other favorites are Odell’s Brewery, located at 800 E. Lincoln Ave., and Fort Collins Brewery, at 1020 E. Lincoln Ave. If you’re feeling really ambitious, you can even tour multiple breweries in one day.

3. Go to the park and have a picnic

Now that spring is here, catch some vitamin D while hanging out at the park. You and your sweetie can throw a frisbee, sit in the grass or get in touch with your inner child and play on the playground. Plus, what’s more romantic than a picnic in the park? You can bring homemade food or take-out, depending on your cooking skills.

4. Walk around Old Town

Old Town Fort Collins is a happening place. You can walk around Old Town window shopping or people watching. If you go during business hours, you can bring your love in the shops and cheesily dream about what items you want in your future home together. Or you could drop hints for a birthday present.

5. Stargazing and Horsetooth

You can drive up to Horsetooth any night and enjoy nature from the safety of your car. As you stare into your darling’s eyes before you kiss, you won’t even care if that feeling in your stomach is butterflies or car sickness from the winding roads. As you gaze up at the stars together and time seems to stand still, you can be sure you’ll remember this night forever. Probably.

6. Date-night in


If you’re too tired to go out on the weekend, you and your sugar can have a romantic night in. You can make dinner together and watch Netflix. If you’re really looking for a spark, you can tune in to those adorable cats on YouTube.

These are all ideas for you and your cuddly-bear, but if you can’t find a date, don’t sweat it. All of these romantic ideas can be converted into roommate bonding time or even some great alone time. So if you’re on a budget, don’t get depressed, there’s still a plethora of activities for you in Fort Collins.

Collegian Entertainment Assistant Editor Amber Johnson can be reached at