Hubby and I have cheap dates down to a science. Here's our long list of ways we go out and have fun without breaking the bank:
- We play bingo every few weeks. A basic bingo pack is $4 each but we splurge on a couple extras and it comes out to $7 each. As a bonus, donuts and drinks are free when we play bingo.
- We go to senior matinee movies if there is a movie hubby wants to see (I'm not much of a movie person but will go if there is a movie he really wants to see--we just watched Crazy Rich Asians and it was great!). This costs $4 each and we always eat at home first because the cost of food at the movies is astronomical!
- We do the occasional picnic in the park which means making food at home, taking it and a blanket to a very nice nearby park, and eating.
- Our library system is amazing so I check their events calendar every week to see what they are offering (lots of free movies, free classes, and monthly big events like bands and dance troupes).
- There is always something free happening in Vegas--we can watch the Bellagio Fountains, visit the local chocolate factory for free chocolate and a tour, watch a major music group at the downtown free concert series (Melissa Etheridge is playing this Saturday), go to the Fremont and people watch/watch the overhead show/dance to live bands that line the street, marvel at the Hoover Dam, etc.
- We have both a state parks pass and a national parks pass so we sometimes go to both of these types of parks (the state parks in our area always have free activities going on each weekend like a Civil War reenactment, cast iron cooking demo, etc).
- The South Point casino has free rodeo events going on nearly each weekend--we've watched cowboy action shooting, cutting horses, bull riding, barrel racing, and other events there.
- There are A LOT of free group activities here--we have free guided hikes at Red Rock, weekend walks with a walking club, another hiking club for hardcore seniors (last time I was there a bunch of 60+ guys were getting ready to set out with all of their rock climbing gear, etc).
- If volunteering as a couple is your things, there are A LOT of opportunities to do this sort of thing in Las Vegas--our animal shelters are always looking for volunteers, our big genealogy library always needs volunteers, ditto the school district, special events (if you volunteer a day at the huge Electric Daisy Carnival you get a free pass for the rest of the event), search and rescue, etc.
There are other things to do as well that cost a bit more money like getting a $50 annual membership to see a bunch of Vegas shows each week for free, trying out new restaurants (we like hole-in-the-wall Asian restaurants), using coupons that come in the mail for $5 buffets, etc. There are also some odd but free things to do like when TV companies put out the call for "extras" to be in the audience or background of an event (we've seen this for the Penn and Teller Fool Us show, the American Ninja Warriors show, the Latin Grammys, and a country music awards show).
I know we are fortunate that there is so much free and cheap stuff to do here, most small towns may not have such opportunities, but I think I would throw up a video on the side of the house and invite the neighbors to come watch or host a bonfire in the back yard before I would shell out full price for movie tickets!