While it's swell to indulge in a lavish evening out every now and then, there are plenty of Atlanta date ideas that are heavy on fun and light on your wallet.
Whether you're trying to liven up your regular date night or impress a first date for less, you'll spend $30 or less for the hip yet affordable dates below. (Just remember to use any money saved to go on more dates–your love life is worth it!)
Sawnee Mountain Preserve hike
Trail Access Points in Cumming: 4075 Spot Road; 2500 Bettis-Tribble Gap Road; 2505 Bettis-Tribble Gap Road
A great day trip date about 40 miles north of Atlanta, the Indian Seats Trail hikes over and around the sheer face of Sawnee Mountain to breathtaking views of the Blue Ridge Mountains from the mountain's overlook. A nice side stop is the visitor center with interactive exhibits about Sawnee Mountain.
Bacon tasting at Bon Glaze
Price: $5.75 each for two 5-slice orders of bacon, $2 for six donut holes, two BG Blends coffees at $2.05 each = $17.60
Powers Ferry Square, 3794 Roswell Road. 470-428-2569
Which Atlanta date ideas could beat a gourmet coffee date? How about a bacon date at a coffee cafe that's right in Atlanta. Bon Glaze has five-slice servings of thick bacon, which comes in candied, natural wood smoked, chocolate-dipped and candied cayenne varieties.
Team trivia and tasting at Red Brick Brewing taproom
Price: $12 each for six tastings = $24
2323 Defoor Hills Road NW. 404-355-5558
A fun "get to know you date," the Red Brick Brewing Company tasting room has a copper-top bar and a cozy lounge. Tours begin at the start of the second hour and include 32 ounces total of different brewery favorites, like Hoplanta, and a souvenier cup. An enhanced Atlata date idea is to hit the tasting room on Thursdays between 6:30 p.m.-8 p.m. so you can also enjoy Team Trivia. (This could offer hints as to your date's competitive nature.)
North Georgia Zoo Petting Farm
Price: Petting farm only admission $8 each = $16
2912 Paradise Valley Road, Cleveland. 706-348-7279
While the zoo admission is out of range for a $30 and under Atlanta date, take a day trip to just the petting farm for about the price of a movie. It's a great way to find out how the object of your affection likes cuddling and cute tiny beings.
Taco Tuesday at Prickly Pear Taqueria and Tequila Bar
Price: three $2 tacos each, two $4 Texas margarita each = $28
950 W. Peachtree St. Suite 220. 404-881-8887
Can you really date someone who doesn't love tacos? Get your Tuesday fix at a great price without leaving Midtown. And frugal daters, note that this Atlanta date includes free parking!
Price: $9 each for early show admission; $12 for snacks like popcorn or Fair Trade chocolate = $30
931 Monroe Drive (in the Midtown Promenade Center). 404-879-0160
Catch a blockbuster or one of the classic or latest independent films that are hard to find in Atlanta at a bargain rate. All you have to do is make sure you catch the earliest afternoon show (usually about 1 p.m. ) on Friday, Saturday or Sunday or any pre-dinner hour shows Monday-Thursday. The timing is perfect for a three-day weekend date or rainy day weekends. And unlike most Atlanta date ideas, count on free parking at the Midtown Art Cinema. To prepare for great date conversation, tap the Landmark Theatres online Q&As for newly released films.
The burger-beer combo at Twain's
Price: $11 each for burger and beer = $22
211 E. Trinity Place, Decatur. 404-373-0063
If you can time your date for Wednesday or Sunday evening, you can enjoy a Brasstown Farm huckburger, Springer Mountain Chicken burger or smoked beet burger and a Twain's ale for just $11 each. Twain's has been a brewery for some years now and if you want to hang out longer, the billiards, darts and shuffleboard will give you the excuse you need.
Open Mic Night at Eddie's Attic
Price: $6.25 each for table seating, plus $9 sharing size nachos or wings = $21.50
515 N McDonough St. Ste B, Decatur. 404-377-4976
Way more fun than watching “America's Got Talent” reruns, the low-key live music venue Eddie's Attic hosts an open mic night most Mondays as a springboard for aspiring performing songwriters of all ability levels. They have 10 minutes to capture the audience with two original songs. This is a great double date option since you'll need four to reserve table seating (general admission is $5, which does not guarantee seating.) And purchase tickets early, since the Monday night gig tends to sell out well in advance.
Dessert and games at Snowville Shavery
Price: $6 each for two topping shaved snow = $12
2100 Roswell Road, Suite 2160, Marietta. 470-263-8170
A low-key date concept: shaved snow for two. These concoctions are beautiful and tasty, sort of a grown-up snow cone with milk based shavings. With flavors like green tea and pina colada, enjoy a unique dessert and end your night on a sweet note. Best of all, if you're enjoying your time together, the Shavery has board games you can play while you're there. (But try to stay off of their free WiFi; you're on a date, after all.)
A short round at Candler Park Golf Course
Price: $11 for 9 holes Monday-Thursday, $6 pull cart rental = $28
585 Candler Park Dr. NE. 404-371-1260
This is a nice spin on the typical after-work happy hour date: play a short round of golf right in Atlanta before the course closes around 7. You'll have plenty of time to converse as you walk the course. Never have the hills of Atlanta been put to such good use.
Weeknight bowling at the Comet Pub & Lanes
Price: $3 per game for two games each; $4 shoe rental = $20
2619 N Decatur Road, Decatur. 470-225-1931
Enjoy the retro 1950s bowling alley Sunday to Thursday at super reasonable prices. Spend the money you save on some crinkly fries or scratch-made pizza, or try one of the 16 beers on tap.