This July I’ll be celebrating my… hold on a second while I figure it out… 24th wedding anniversary. When I found Mr. Right, it was pre-technology and the majority of our communication was either by long distance phone call or mail. You know, there was a time when we actually put ink on paper, paper in envelopes and licked a stamp to adhere it. That’s when I was dating.
I have several friends who are single and have shared on Facebook about the trials and tribulations of dating. Most interaction involves smartphones. According to a recently U.S. Cellular survey, 61% of people texted a potential love interest within the first few weeks following a first date. Yes, that is communication but it doesn’t sound like fun and certainly doesn’t sound romantic. A few friends have said they have given up on trying to deal with it and I don’t blame them.
But it got me thinking that dating isn’t just for those who are single. Hey! Get your mind out of the gutter! Even those who are in a relationship need to carve out date time with their significant other to help reinforce those bonds and remind each other why they fell in love in the first place. There are several ways that you can use your smartphone to make the most of date night!
First and foremost, if you have kids you need to find a sitter. It’s difficult to put total faith in someone else to care for our kids, but there are websites such as Care.com that specialize in finding a qualified sitter. Spend some time in advance of date night to find the right connection. A week or so before date night, consider ‘hiring’ someone for an afternoon while you’re at home just to see how they interact with the kids. Use the time to get some cleaning or work done, or for that matter, do your nails or read a book. It will give you some peace of mind and allow you to get to know the Care.com sitter better. If you’re utilizing a teenage neighbor or relative, ask if they have a smartphone (what teen doesn’t?) and let them know FaceTime or Skype are options in case someone has a panic attack. Translation: Mom will take a restroom break during dinner to call when she freaks out about being away from her kids. In case you didn’t realize it, Care.com also can help find a sitter for your four-legged children!
Not sure what to do? Anything! Grab your smartphone and use sites like Fandango to check out the movie times and even purchase tickets on the fly. If you decide to take in a movie, be sure to see if your chain has an app. Ours offers discounts and promotions that make concessions more affordable (or free)!
Make dinner reservations with OpenTable or find a new restaurant by surfing Yelp. Of course, nothing can ruin a good dinner out like a bad meal. Yeah, think about that for a minute. If you’re going to test out a new restaurant, at least look up some reviews first. Maybe even hunt for coupons using discount site. Of course, if you think you and your significant other will each like to enjoy adult beverages, set up an account with Uber or Lyft so you’ll be able to safely get home after your festivities.
How many times have we mentioned our Friday night game meet-up? We originally discovered it through a meet-up app. Surf local calendars to find sporting events, symphony events, museum activities, collector’s show, trivia nights or whatever. Find a mutual interest and rekindle over an event surrounding that. Use your phone to research store, event or location hours so you can plan your date accordingly.
Date night doesn’t have to be a night.. it can be a day out. Plan a picnic at a park or go for a hike. There are a multitude of apps available available for iPhone and Android smartphones to use to connect with nature! Feel like bringing nature inside? Use your phone to order a bouquet of flowers or chocolates.
While technology doesn’t need to come between you and your date, using a smartphone with reliable cellular service such as U.S. Cellular certainly can help you make the most of your night (or day) out!
What is your best tip for a great date night?