Date nights are so important no matter where you are in your relationship. If you’re in the early stages, you’ll be wanting to impress your new partner. If you’ve got a couple of years under your belt, romantic dates will help keep the fire burning. And if you’ve been together for longer than you can count, dates are more important than ever!

They show your loved one just how much you appreciate their presence in your life. So, without further ado, here are four ideas for a perfect date night. That’s one for every Friday for the next month!

A surprise picnic

If the date is happening in the warmer or summer months, take the fun outside. Organise a surprise picnic in your own backyard or garden. Head to the supermarket and gather up all of your partner’s favourite food and drinks. Don’t forget desserts! To save on washing up later, pick up some disposable plates and cutlery. Also, pick up a bottle of alcohol-free wine or some fruit juice, and a bag of ice to keep it cool. If you don’t have a wine cooler, a large vase might do the trick!

In the garden, lay out a picnic blanket. String up battery powered fairy lights. Light citronella candles to ward off pesky insects. Light some standard tealights too. If you have a traditional picnic hamper, put all of the food inside. Surprise your date with your hard work, playing their favourite music on a pair of battery-powered speakers as they step into the garden. They’ll almost certainly swoon!

A romantic meal

Step away from the takeaway menu and close the fridge! Put on your best outfits and make a booking at a nice restaurant instead. Head to L’anima in London for authentic Italian cuisine; look here for more info. Or, see if there are any awesome street food places that you’ve yet to try out. Alternatively, you could be brave and try out a cuisine you’ve never had before. How about Macanese or Icelandic? Find more inspiration on emerging cuisines from around the world here. Why stick with the same old thing when there is so much variety out there?

Head to a spa

Increasingly, spas are opening later into the evenings. This means that people can go and relax after work. It also means you can have a date there! Opt for a couples massage so you can stay together. Or, let your partner pick a treatment of their choice from the menu. If you can’t afford a holiday, then consider just one evening at a hotel near you with a spa – it’ll satisfy your craving for a little luxury getaway – if only for a short while! 

A cinema trip

No, this isn’t just a standard trip. This is one worth of the title ‘perfect date night cinema’. Book a taxi, rather taking the car or public transport. Splash out on a big bucket of popcorn to share. Upgrade to the luxury seating. This tends to be made of better material, be more spacious and have leg room.

Alternatively, see if there are any cinemas in your local area that have sofas and armchairs. Everyman Cinemas usually do. They also have at-seat service, so you can order a pizza to be delivered before the showing – which is my kind of cinema!