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7 Simple Dates While on a College Student Budget

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

As many college students know, sometimes it’s hard to find entertaining things to do when we only have a little bit of money. It can be stressful trying to impress someone on a date when we are unable to afford something extravagant like going to a fancy restaurant or attending a concert. It’s important to remember that many students are struggling with money and sometimes memories that can be made are the most important aspect of a date. 

Each of these seven date ideas will provide some general recommendations and some Oswego specific recommendations. :) 

  1. Picnic

Almost everyone knows what a picnic is, and who doesn’t love enjoying some sunlight and eating snacks? For this date, you can get a large blanket, sit and relax, and have some great conversations. You can also choose to do other activities like drawing, painting, listening to music, and more. 

Oswego: If you are unable to go off-campus, feel free to have a picnic in any of the open spaces outside of the residence halls, or even down by the lake! Breitbeck Park and the Fallbrook Lodge are also great locations. 

  1. Thrift Store

Many towns and cities may have thrift stores where people can go shopping to find used items for cheap prices. Once a transportation plan has been created, you and your date can go to a thrift store and find some throwback movies, clothes, games, and other items for a low price. 

Oswego: There is a Thrifty Shopper located at 57 East Bridge Street that students can visit and find a variety of cool things to buy or talk about.

  1. Riverwalk

If you are located near a body of water and there are safe places to walk, you can take your date to admire the water and converse. Many areas in Upstate New York provide safe access next to bodies of water and oftentimes cute, local shops can be found along the routes. 

Oswego: Students can walk along the Canal and possibly stop at a variety of shops located near the water. 

  1. Hiking

If you are an outdoorsy person and your date agrees to a hike, you can find many places that will provide you with some nice things to observe like flowers, waterfalls, animals, and more. 

Oswego: SUNY Oswego students have free access to the trails at Rice Creek Field Station and Fallbrook Lodge. As long as you dress appropriately for the weather, taking a hike in either of the locations can be fun and intriguing. 

  1. Watch the sunset/sunrise

Depending on if you are a morning or night person, you can choose to watch the sunrise or sunset with your date. You can also bring snacks or card games to pass the time.

Oswego: We are lucky to have a campus along the lake and there are many great spots along the water that will provide a gorgeous view when experiencing a sunset or sunrise. 

  1. Farmer’s Market

At a farmer’s market, you can find some fresh fruits, vegetables, or other items for sale. You and your date can buy some items and meet some friendly vendors in the process. 

Oswego: The Oswego Farmers Market takes place from the end of May through the end of October and is on Thursday evenings from 4:30pm to 8:30pm on West First Street between Bridge and Oneida Streets. Ontario Orchards is also a great place to find bakery items, pet food, pies, and more!

  1. On-Campus event 

Many college campuses are known for hosting events in order to get students involved and making friends. If you and your date are both free at a certain time and the campus is providing events with free admittance, make a plan to meet up and experience the event that is being offered. Some examples include sporting events, open mic nights, roller skating, ice skating, and many more. 

Oswego: Students can utilize the SUNY Oswego events calendar in order to find what events are being offered on-campus. Many clubs and organizations post information about the events on the calendar, on their social media accounts, and in the LakerLife portal. 

Bonus: Seasonal Dates

Winter– Sledding or Christmas Caroling

Spring–Stargazing or Singing in the rain

Summer– Swimming or Visiting waterfalls

Fall–Nature walk or Visiting a pumpkin patch 

Jaylea Ransom is a communication major at SUNY Oswego and plans to attend graduate school for a master's in business administration. When Jaylea is not reading, writing, or completing work for an internship, you can find her watching Netflix or listening to music.
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