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  • Nic F. Anderson

5 NYC Date Ideas | $30-40

Times are hard and unless you are from an affluent family or just got lucky, a lot of us don’t have the ability to drop a week’s worth of a paycheck on a date… especially when you pay rent in New York City or are disproportionately paid less than your white, cisgender, straight, able-bodied, neurotypical, etc. (or all of the above!) counterparts.

At the same time, we deserve to splurge on ourselves and others every now and then.

Here are five NYC date ideas that cost between $30 and $40.

Hand Pulled noodles in Chinatown | Tasty Hand Pulled Noodles


Located at 1 Doyers St. in Chinatown and open from 10:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. – more than enough time to satisfy your noodle needs.

This is a place that you and yours could go to on a budget, but we recommend not doing that. Sample a little bit of this, a little bit of that and of course, get the hand pulled noodles.

Check out the menu here.

Go to a local plant store and buy a plant, show off your knowledge

If you’re a plant queer, then you already know what we’re about to say. Get to know your date (if they’re new in your life) by bringing them to a plant shop! There are many, many locally owned plant shops in every borough, you just have to pick one!

Visit One of the Botanic Gardens

This is turning into a nature-themed date list, but it’s okay. We could all use a little more green in our lives.

PERK: Multiple studies have shown that nature is good for us (see: Nurtured by nature and Nature and mental health).

Brooklyn: A membership includes free admission; however, without a membership, the ticket prices for the Brooklyn Botanic Garden are the following:

Adult tickets: $18/person

Student tickets: $12/person

Senior: $12/person

Visit the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s website for more information.

Manhattan: Tickets for the Manhattan public garden are more expensive than the Brooklyn Botanic Garden and go out of this price range (unless you and your date are splitting the bill).

Adult: $30

Students: $28

Seniors: $28

Visit the Manhattan Botanic Garden’s website for more information.

Go to a Comedy Show

While going to a show isn’t the best place for Q&A, it does make a good conversation piece. There are probably hundreds (a little exaggerated, but maybe not) comedy shows throughout the boroughs every week with ranging prices. If the comedy is great, you and yours will be able to laugh your way through the night. If it’s bad… well, you’ll have something to talk about later. Either way, a good conversation starter would be discussing what worked and what didn’t work.

Buy Art Supplies & Make Art

This one is obviously tricky because art supplies are incredibly expensive; however, buying from local shops always makes the price tag less shocking – at least for us.

Our favorite art stores are the Artist & Craftsman Supply shops because they are employee owned. (-:

Artsy date ideas include:

  • Crafting sculptures, jewelry, ornaments, etc with polymer clay.

  • Painting

  • Drawing

  • Create handmade cards

  • E T C

Art is subjective, so get creative.

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