Have a big date coming up but don’t want to break the bank? We’ve got you covered. We scoured the city and found the best free date ideas in New York City that will impress your date won’t cost you a penny. You can’t put a price on love, and you can’t put a price on these dates either.
1. Tastings at Astor Wines (399 Lafayette St)
It doesn’t matter if wine, whiskey, gin, vodka, or another libation is your favorite. Astor wines has tastings to satisfy everyone’s interest. Some of their pours include an array of Japanese whiskeys, aloe vera and Uncle Val’s gin, Tito’s, and Spanish wines. Sit and sip with your date and enjoy 20% off any wine (still or sparkling) or 10% off any spirit that was poured that day, and take your purchase back home for a relaxing, romantic movie and drinks night when your tasting is complete. Cheers to happy dating!
2. Graffiti Tour (Meets at 288 Seigel St, Brooklyn)
If you’re looking for something exciting and off the beaten path, Bushwick’s graffiti tour is just the thing for you. Artists whose work you may come across on the tour include Buff the Monster, whose pieces easily spark conversation with their bright colors and adorable characters and Skewville, an artist that brought back the classic ‘throw your tied sneakers over the telephone wire’ trend. Beyond the art itself, enjoy the excitement of Brooklyn, as you explore some of the borough’s authentic spots, like Roberta’s Pizza, the Loom, and some of the must-see vintage shops. This tour is a great way to experience Brooklyn and is perfect for anything from a first date to a casual couple’s outing.
3. MoMA (11 W 53rd St)
Prefer to admire your art in an indoor setting? Sad that you and your date probably won’t find a place in the city for successful stargazing? Grab your date and head to MoMA between 4 and 8pm on Fridays for free entry into the museum. Since stars in NYC are typically hidden away behind the 24 hours of bright lights in the city that never sleeps, instead take in the beauty of Van Gogh’s famous “Starry Starry Night.” Exhibits are always changing, so this famous art spot could become a habitual dating site that never grows old. From painting, to sculpture, to film, MoMA provides an unforgettable multimedia experience that will give you and your date a special experience to talk about for hours.
4. Bryant Park (Midtown)
While events themselves change throughout the year, Bryant Park always provides some date-worthy activities. In the cooler months, grab your skates and head to the park’s free skating rink. Show off to your date with your killer moves on the ice, or fall on your butt a few times and laugh about it. No matter what your skill level may be, this classic date activity will leave you with adorable date memories. Also, the Winter Village that takes over the park from October through January is impossible not to love. You and your date may even find yourselves right under the mistletoe!
Bryant Park also won’t leave you hanging for free date ideas in the summer. If you’ve always wanted to take your date to a Broadway show but couldn’t afford the steep prices, head to Bryant Park in the summer for “106.7 Lite FM’s Broadway in Bryant Park.” Get a glimpse of all of Broadway’s best at absolutely no cost. If the singing isn’t too up yours or your date’s alley, you can also hit the park for HBO’s Summer Film Festival. Cozy up on a picnic blanket with plenty of snacks to go around, and enjoy a super romantic moonlit summer night.
5. Picnic on the Highline (Meatpacking District)
Do you ever have a date that just makes you feel like you’re on top of the world? This date spot will do that to you literally. If you haven’t been, the Highline is a park suspended above the West Side, along what used to be a set of railroad tracks. People watch as you picnic–brunch it up with some bagel and lox, grab a slice of pizza or prepare some food at home. Don’t forget a blanket to lay out your meal on, and you’ll have yourself a new cozy free date spot. Make sure to walk through the park when your meal is done to get a look at some fascinating art and some up above views of the city. If you stay past sunset (which will also be beautiful), rumor has it you can even stargaze from the elevated park.
6. Upright Citizens Brigade (153 E 3rd Street)
Want to make your date laugh? Drop by the East Village comedy spot, the Upright Citizen’s Brigade. While the free shows feature amateur performers, the team’s improv act is still sure to have you cracking up all night. The theater is small and intimate, allowing you to easily and comfortably interact with your date, while the cast members make it a goal to interact with you. The theater also features an extremely cheap beer and wine bar to help make your free comedy experience a little boozy. Keep your date loling all night without you having to attempt any of your own cheesy jokes with this date destination.
7. Brooklyn Museum (200 Eastern Parkway, at Washington Ave, Brooklyn)
8. Hike in Inwood Park (Dyckman St)
If you and your date want to get all outdoorsy and naturey–basically what the city isn’t–but you also don’t really want to leave the city, Inwood Hill Park is your next date spot. While other NYC parks are great for hanging out, Inwood Park is ideal for its hiking trails. Grab your Timberlands and choose from an array of trails filled with striking points of interest including the Overlook Meadow, which proves that there are actually some stunning views of New Jersey; Shorakapok Rock, which marks the spot where the Native Americans supposedly sold New York to Europeans; and giant rock formations. It’s an ideal escape from urban life and the perfect adventure to embark on with someone you care about.
9. Brooklyn Heights Promenade (Pierrepont Pl, Brooklyn)
Don’t think it’s worth it to go to a mediocre restaurant that over charges just because it’s famous for having awesome views? Ditch the food and go somewhere just for the views…for free! Whether it’s the glistening water in the summer, colored trees in fall and spring, or stunning snowy pathways in winter, the Brooklyn Heights Promenade gives you a view that will put you in awe. Get all cute and hold hands with your date as you wander down this 1,826 foot walkway, and don’t forget to take a selfie, because it will be Insta-worthy. This spot is a place where you can get lost for hours talking to that special someone you care about, or a person you’re excited to know more about, while you both take in your breathtaking surroundings.
10. Sofar Sound Secret Concerts (Location Varies)
Always the first to hear all the new up and coming bands? Want your date to get a taste of your music vibes? Sofar Sounds invites you to their secret concerts. When you create a profile on their website, Sofar Sounds will send you what concerts they have coming up and where after you apply for tickets to shows that interest you. Grab your date, and you’ll find that song that can become your song without it being everyone’s song. With this date ideas, you two will automatically have something special to share with each other from the experience to all of the new songs for you to fall in love with. The concerts are completely free for this priceless date option that any music lover would go crazy for.
11. Babeland NYC (94 Rivington Street)
Maybe do this with someone you’re totally comfortable with… maybe you’re adventurous and want to try this for a first date… totally your call. Babeland NYC proudly offers free sex events if you want to leave home but you’re still feeling a more promiscuous date night. Some of the events offered, guaranteed to give you a spicy night, include “Wintry Mix: Sex Tips and Whiskey Tasting,” “Winter Warmer Massage for Couples,” or the “Hot Toddy Happy Hour: Oral Sex for Everybody.” Free events run Thursday through Sunday weekly, so find the smokin’ hot event that suits your and your date’s fancy.
By now you know that just because a date is free doesn’t mean it has to be cheap. So grab your date and get out there but feel free to leave your wallet at home.