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Trying to come up with fresh and fun date ideas is hard enough as it is already and being a low-income student can make it seem next to impossible. However, just because you’re strapped for cash doesn’t mean you can’t have an exciting and memorable night out. With a financially conscious mindset and a little bit of creativity, you’ll soon find that some of the best dates cost little to nothing at all.

First, if you look around, you’ll find that most businesses have certain deals on specific days of the week which are well worth taking advantage of. Make Tuesday night date night and hit up Imagine Cinemas for $7 movies, go to Cousin Vinny’s Pizzeria for cheap slices, then get together with another couple and go on a double date at The Card Board Café, where admission is two for one on Tuesdays.

Other great places to check out in town include Palasad which offers $2 bowling on Mondays and, if you have a vehicle, the Mustang Drive-In charges only $20 for a carload of people to see two movies on a Thursday night.

Speaking of which, owning a set of wheels opens up a plethora of possible dates for as low a cost as a few liters of gas. Go out and explore a nearby small-town in the surrounding country. Window shopping, getting tea or having brunch is even better in a cute village you’ve never seen before.

If it’s a sunny day and you want to spend some time outside, head to one of the gorgeous beaches nearby in Port Stanley or Grand Bend.

If you’re without a means of transportation, there’s plenty of other outside activities you can do in the London area that are only an LTC bus ride away. Pack a picnic and visit one of London’s many parks during the summertime or go to Victoria Park or Covent Garden Market for free skating in the winter.

Music lovers can go see some talented indie bands at venues like Rum Runners or Call The Office for as little as a $5 cover. While those with a more refined taste in the arts should check out a community theatre production or visit Museum London or TAP where, with entry by donation, you can see amazing visual art from all across Canada.

And for those nights where you and your significant other may just want a quiet night at home, putting in a little extra thought and effort into things can turn a simple night in into an unforgettable date. Instead of getting Uber Eats, why not take the time to make a meal together. Netflix and chill is always a classic, but take it to the next level by building the world’s biggest pillow fort first.

Finally, let’s not forget all the exciting events organized by the Fanshawe Student Union (FSU) that you can attend for little to no money at all. Go see a free movie or concert, watch a sporting event, take a cheap day trip to Niagara Falls and more just for being a Fanshawe Student. A full list of upcoming events can be found at FSU.ca/events.

Hopefully by now you’re starting to get into the right mindset and realize that by thinking outside the wallet, having a fun night out calls for more creativity then it does finances.