10 Alternative Dates For Couples That Like To Mix It Up (Cause Netflix And Chill Doesn’t Always Cut It)

iFLY
iFLY

1. Indoor skydiving.

Skydiving is the most clichéd way to tap into your adventurous side for a reason: It works. And if you experience the rush of flying through the air with someone you love, you end up with even more than an adrenaline boost. You get an instant memory rooted in a shared “first,” too. The good news is, you don’t have to risk your life or jump out of an actual plane to ride the wind these days.

Thanks to the aptly named iFLY Indoor Skydiving, you and your boyfriend or girlfriend can experience the joy of levitating in a state-of-the-art wind chamber without breaking the bank, or fretting over your mortality. All you need to do is book a time slot, show up for the safety tutorial in which expert instructors teach you how to position your body and how to read various hand signals (the force of airflow makes communicating via speech virtually impossible). Then you get to borrow some special suits and helmets that will make you feel like superheroes as you wait your turn to step inside the vertical wind tunnel. The fast-growing sport of “bodyflight” is pretty awesome in and of itself, but it’s yet more amazing when you get to wake up alongside your significant other 24 hours later feeling equally sore in some very weird places (unless of course your muscles are already accustomed to human flight).

3. Play rich and scope out some real estate.

Wherever you are, there’s an awesome house or apartment on the market, and real estate brokers don’t perform background checks on people who express interest in viewing properties for sale. Why not join your lover on a leisurely tour of the most expensive listings in the area? It’s strangely satisfying to get a inside look at other people’s homes and lives. Plus, house hunting tends to breed heartwarming thoughts about the future—the country house you and bae might one day purchase (even if your savings account is currently non-existent), how many children might occupy the backyard, and what cars you might own to cart them all around.

4. Test drive a fancy-ass car together.

There isn’t a car salesman out there who’ll question a friendly, inquiring duo that steps onto the dealership floor. So dress the part of a wealthy couple on the prowl for an auto to add to the family collection and hit up the closest establishment selling Ferraris or Porsches. Insist on test driving whichever vehicle piques your interest the most, and revel in every second you get to take that pricy set of wheels out for a spin, Ferris Bueller style, before returning to your regular life. Role play is no less thrilling outside the bedroom. Promise.

5. Create a secret Instagram account.

All it takes to start a secret Instagram account is an email address, a handle, and a password. You can do it over dinner at a restaurant or from the comfort of your couch on a Saturday afternoon. Base the concept for your couple’s Insta on an inside joke or a random whim. Just don’t tell a soul about it so it’s something precious only you two share. It doesn’t matter whether you end up with five or 50 likes per post. The thrill of contributing covertly to a joint account and watching it grow (or stagnate—who really cares!) is the endlessly entertaining “date” that will keep you engaged for weeks or even months on end.

5. Shop in actual stores.

The Internet long ago rendered shopping in stores obsolete. But there’s a component of visiting shops as a couple that’s totally worthwhile, not to mention retro-chic: Trying on clothes for each other. You don’t even have to be in the lingerie department to make the process of dressing up enjoyable. Just choose some super cute, over-priced items or grab a few experimental outfits. Then let your partner gawk as you parade around for them in all your new looks. It’s hot to watch your significant other transform right before you. You don’t even have to buy anything for this mini-adventure to prove rewarding. And if you’re brave enough, you can always sneak into the same dressing room for a little additional fun.

6. Leave the house without your phones.

It sounds simple because it is. You won’t fully appreciate just how reliant you are on cell phones until you leave them behind purposefully to embark on an afternoon without an ounce of tech support. Without an app to guide you or the ability to Google, you’ll end up in places you’d never expect—even if it’s just down the street you so rarely traverse, or in a corner of the park you never think to station yourselves in. When glancing at a screen isn’t even an option, you’ll also be amazed by how much time you spend talking to each other instead of triple checking your social feeds or snapping dozens selfies.

7. Build a badass fort.

Forts—they’re not just for kids. Especially on cold and/or rainy days, fort building is an indoor friendly activity that will distract you in the best way possible for at least a few hours. Spend some time considering your available materials and how you might build the structure you’re envisioning. When you’re finished repurposing blankets, books, and lamps, snuggle up in the dark little cocoon of a space you’ve created with a flashlight and read a story out loud to each other or watch a movie. If it all falls apart, you can always laugh at yourselves for failing so spectacularly at a child’s game.

8. Make some treasure hunts for each other.

Turns out, treasure hunts aren’t just for kids, either. Doing it right actually requires a lot of forethought. You have to think of the right clues, the right locations for each hint, and, of course, the grand finale to your maze. Every single second of time spent inevitably proves gratifying, however, as you watch your significant other uncover each clue and stumble their way towards the prize, whatever it is. For additional pleasure, pepper your hunt with meaningful little love notes and odes to your relationship.

9. Challenge yourselves to “point-and-cook.”

When it comes to preparing meals, couples tend to fall into patterns centered on the dishes and types of cuisine they already know and love. By forcing yourselves to open up a cookbook and prepare whatever recipe you end up pointing to, you’ll broaden your tastebuds’ horizons. You’ll also enjoy the challenge of tackling something different in the kitchen, which forces you to develop new skills and to learn something about food along the way. Whether the final product makes it into your regular rotation is, of course, up to Fate.

10. Parent some plants.

When you plant something as a couple, you get to watch it grow right before your eyes. What better metaphor for the evolution of a relationship than something that pokes through the earth and blossoms as time goes by? Seriously! Plus, seeds are cheap. You can even use the ones from the last piece of fruit you ate. If you don’t have a backyard or much access to sunlight, make yourselves a little terrarium featuring some dirt and air plants, which are pretty self reliant. Adding a touch of life to your place will make it feel more like home, and parenting a life that doesn’t ever cry or need its diaper changed will bring you certain joy as a couple with very little ongoing financial investment required. TC mark

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