date nights are fun, but they’re also important for connecting with your partner as you spend quality time together. When you add some friends into the mix, it can enhance the experience and provide a break from staring at each other across the dinner table, which is why planning the sporadic double date is always a good idea. Hanging with other friends who are in relationships spices up date night and can also strengthen the bond you have with your S.O. — and ensure you have an active social life outside of your own partnership.
You could integrate your friends into your and your partner’s regular
date activities like happy hour or hitting up your fave restaurant — or you could come up with more creative double date ideas to really switch things up. Think about outings that provide unique opportunities to make memories and connect with your friends (and your boo): If you all enjoy reading, why not form a couple’s book club? Or, if you need to scratch your competitive itch, why not challenge your favorite couple(s) to a round of drinks and mini-golf?
Here, a dating expert shares 12 awesome double date activities you’ll want to try ASAP, whether you want to grow your social circle as a couple or reconnect with friends you’ve neglected because of
new relationship energy (relatable). 1 Paint & Sip Mimi Van Praagh/Moment/Getty Images
You don’t need artistic skills to attend a paint and sip class with your fave couple. This date could make for some serious laughs or even a new masterpiece to hang on your walls. The classes usually consist of an artist-guided painting lesson along with a wine tasting, so even a splotchy attempt can end up looking like Picasso in the end. “Creative dates typically open up a level of conversation that isn’t often touched, so these dates can be a great way to learn about different sides of your fellow daters,” says dating coach and matchmaker
Alexis Germany. 2 Mini-Golf
Playing mini-golf can make for a super fun double date that gets everyone outside (though
Topgolf is a great alternative for rainy days). Whether you’re competitive and thirst for victory or just want to enjoy a leisurely activity with your boo and friends, you’re sure to have a blast. Germany recommends betting on who will win — dessert is on the couple who doesn’t. 3 Unique Dining Experiences
Rather than hitting up your go-to Italian spot on a Friday night, Germany suggests switching your dining experience. This might look like a picnic in the park, an interactive meal like hot pot or hibachi, or a dinner theater show. “If the group has a hard time getting the conversation flowing, a regular dinner can be awkward,” says Germany. “Checking out a unique dining experience automatically gives the group something to chat about and helps to break the ice.”
4 Bowling Klaus Vedfelt/DigitalVision/Getty Images
Lace up those rental shoes and hit the lanes to go bowling on a double date. “When it’s not your turn, there’s time to socialize and enjoy food and beverages,” says Germany. “There’s rarely that awkward alone time that exists if you try a date like this as a party of two.” Bowling is a classic activity that virtually everyone knows how to enjoy, so it makes for an easy option even when you’re planning a last-minute double date with your friends.
5 Laser Tag
Throw it back to childhood by spending an evening playing laser tag with your couple friends. You can choose to play on your S.O.’s team or pair up on opposite sides — either way, allow yourself to have a blast playing like kids for a night.
6 Cooking Class
You could also turn the dining experience around by making the food yourselves in a cooking class. This activity serves as both a way to work together, learn a new skill/recipe, and enjoy quality time over a meal you all made as a group.
7 Game Night Getty Images/Cultura RF/JPM
board or video game double date night is the perfect antidote to gross weather or feeling fatigued at the thought of sitting in a bar or restaurant for the umpteenth time. You can play something super active like Twister, a classic like Monopoly, or even a drinking game with another couple — throw in some good food and you’ve got yourselves a perfect night in. 8 Wine Tasting
For a get-together that can be done out or at home, consider a wine tasting for your next double date. If you do it at home, make a charcuterie board to enjoy a bougie evening. You could also hit up a cool local wine bar to get professional pairings. This is a great date activity that leaves ample room for getting to know new friends or catching up with a couple you haven’t seen in a while.
9 Axe Throwing Anadolu Agency/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images
Are you and your partner into more adrenaline-inducing activities? Germany recommends grabbing your fave couple(s) and trying something exciting like axe throwing. If you haven’t tried it yet, even better.
10 Book Club LeoPatrizi/E+/Getty Images
If you’re down to schedule a standing double date with friends, try inviting other couples to join a book club with you and your S.O. You can take a vote on what kind of genre or series you’ll cover, and then plan to meet up whenever you have time to discuss.
11 Arcade Bar EXTREME-PHOTOGRAPHER/E+/Getty Images
Arcade bars are all the rage for both single and double dates. You can grab a beer and kick some tail in pinball or challenge your friends to a double game of Pacman. Even if you aren’t huge gamers, this is a fantastic way to engage in fun activities with your S.O. and your pals, especially if the couple(s) you’re hanging with are new friends.
12 Dog Park Play Date Hero Images Inc/DigitalVision/Getty Images
Pet parents tend to bond pretty quickly, so if a couple you and your partner are friends with also have an active pooch, offer to meet them at a local dog park. This could even end with cocktails at a dog-friendly bar if there’s one near you. If you and your dogs get along swimmingly, you can make it a regular thing.
Expert: Alexis Germany, dating coach and matchmaker
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