So, you’re in a long-distance relationship. It’s tough, it’s confusing, and you’re always wondering about long-distance relationship date ideas to keep the flame burning. Long-distance dating is always difficult, even if you’re the kind of person who needs a lot of space. And coming up with online date ideas is very different to actually going on a date.
People in long-distance relationships (LDRs) generally need some easy date ideas to get them through the agony of being away from their boo. Are you looking for them too? Maybe you’re too tired, too busy, or just out of ideas and activities to do in your long-distance relationship. Don’t worry, we’ve got your back. To ensure you and your sweetheart make the most of long-distance dating, we spoke to life coach and counselor Joie Bose, who specializes in counseling people dealing with abusive marriages, breakups, and extramarital affairs.
13 Fun Date Ideas To Keep A Long-Distance Relationship Interesting
Laurel and Frank had been dating each other since high school but were forced to get into a long-distance relationship after they got into universities in different cities. While it wasn’t difficult in terms of time zones, there were still living miles away from each other. It was hard to deal with initially. The distance really got to them. They even broke up for a few months only to get back together despite living miles apart.
They did several things to make their long-distance relationship work – coming up with unique and creative date ideas, visiting each other every 3-4 months, planning their expenses, playing online games, cooking virtually together, learning a language, working out, binge-watching TV shows, and so on and so forth. They would send each other snail mails, buy presents for each other, and then open them together.
Both Laurel and Frank are avid travelers as well, which made it easier to spend time together and bond with each other. They continue to get to know each other, and continue to grow individually and as a couple. Technology has helped them fight the distance. But it’s their love and commitment for each other that has helped them conquer long-distance dating.
LDR dating calls for creativity and planning, especially if you have to keep different time zones in mind. Luckily, the internet is a gold mine for long-distance relationship date ideas that’ll make you feel you are actually going on a date with your significant other. So, since we’re all about keeping a relationship interesting, here are some fun long-distance date ideas that’ll put a spring in your step, and a jump in your data costs.
1. Plan a movie night
My partner and I aren’t technically long-distance, but he travels intensively and during the pandemic, meeting was difficult. We’re also huge movie buffs and theaters closing down was almost physically painful for us. So, instead, we’d stream movies on our respective laptops, beginning at the exact same time. Or, one of us would stream a movie and then share our screen.
The latter worked better because we could also see each other on the screen. I knew just when he got emotional (usually when a dog was involved), and he knew just when my heartbeat sped up because Chris Evans was on screen.
Joie says, “Watch movies together. Begin at the same time and stop every 15-20 minutes to discuss or talk about the film.” Movie nights are one of the easiest long-distance date ideas when you just want to chill out and be with each other without an agenda for the evening. Grab a drink, make some popcorn, and get into your comfiest pajamas. Have fun with your long-distance dating.
Related Reading: Thoughts You Have On Your First Date After The Pandemic
2. Have a little book club of two
This is one of the simplest online date ideas and works great if you’re both big readers, or even if you’re not. Pick a book you’ll both enjoy, promise to read it over a week or two, and then plan an online date to talk about it.
Delve deep into the book, the characters, the plot, talk about what you loved, what you hated, what parts made you laugh, and what you made you cry. If you found the book really dense and difficult to get into, talk about that as well. You could even pick relationship books to read.
You could make it a really sophisticated affair and make cocktails, or have some wine while you’re at it. The idea is to have something fun to talk about that you’ve both done. You could also venture into whether or not the book should be adapted into a show or a movie, and who should play what character. There’s really no end to the fun you can have with LDR dating ideas like this one.
3. Take a class together
What are you into? Roman architecture? Graphic design? Machine learning? Painting? Whatever it is, there’s almost certainly a course available for it online. And what could be better, or a more fun long-distance relationship idea than to share a class with your partner?
Open course providers such as Coursera provide a huge number of online courses in diverse subjects. If you’re ambitious or really keen to learn acting from Natalie Portman or writing from Roxane Gay, there’s also Masterclass, where you can subscribe and get lessons from your favorite experts.
Remember, this doesn’t have to be a super serious course that’s going to further your career. It’s great if it does, but like all easy date ideas, make it fun. The whole point is to share something great with your significant other. So, you could simply take a course that’s completely out there and has nothing to do with your work. For instance, if you’re both techies, consider a course in classical music, or even Buddhism!
4. Go for a walk together, sort of
So, maybe you’re looking for online date ideas, but you want to get out of the house, blow the cobwebs away. How about going for a walk while your partner’s on the other end of the phone, also taking a walk wherever they are? This could be on your bucket-list for couples if you’re in a long-distance love affair.
“I’m in New York, and my partner’s in New Orleans,” says Janet. “We’ve done video calls and date nights, but it’s also kind of great to just be out in our respective cities, while on the phone. She tells me about things she’s walking past, cafes that look good, what the weather’s like, etc. In return, I tell her what our favorite spots in New York look like now, or whether it looks like it’s about to snow, and so on.” Such a cute long-distance relationship, isn’t it?
We don’t recommend being on a video call the entire time you’re walking because who knows what you’ll run into or trip over. Plus, it’s hard to concentrate on walking when you’re staring into your phone. Try and time your calls at a time when streets aren’t too busy, because nothing annoys people more than someone focusing on how to be romantic on the phone instead of paying attention to where they are going. It’s better to do a voice call, be as descriptive as you want to be, and maybe occasionally turn on the video if you really want to show them something.
Related Reading: 11 Virtual Dating Mistakes Everyone Makes But YOU Can Avoid
5. Go on a virtual museum tour
Let’s face it, this is not going to be like an actual museum tour, but the whole point of long-distance date ideas is to do things together, even if you’re not really together. The COVID-19 pandemic brought a lot of things online that were unthinkable before, and you can continue to take advantage of a lot of it.
If you’re a couple who’s into art and history or both, or even if you’re just looking for something to do together on a rainy afternoon, virtual museum tours could be a cute long-distance relationship idea.
You could check out the mummies at the British Museum in London, or take in some art at the Guggenheim in New York. There’s also the National Museum of Anthropology in Mexico if you’re interested in archaeology, anthropology, etc. This is a fun activity to do together when you’ve had enough of movies and TV shows and just want to do something different.
6. Cook and eat a meal together
Says Joie, “Cook or bake together. You could also have meals together over video call.” Turn your respective apartments into cordon bleu restaurants, or fast-food joints, depending on your culinary skills. Making and sharing food with someone you love is a cute long-distance relationship date idea. You can each choose a recipe (could be the same cuisine or something completely different), and then get onto a video call and start cooking together.
“My wife was away for six months on work,” says Rowan. “I’m a major foodie and love to cook, but she prefers to eat out. But we thought cooking together and sharing a meal would be great, so she decided to try and make a simple pasta and I made prawn cocktails and lasagna. We cooked together on a video call, and then sat down at our respective tables and just had a great meal together. She’s never really gotten into cooking, but I’d say she’s truly perfected that one pasta dish!”
7. Watch a live virtual concert together
Listening to good music together is great, but a live show can truly be magical. If an actual live show isn’t on the cards, a virtual one is the next best thing. There are plenty of musicians who put on live shows via Instagram Live or Facebook Live, and there are recorded concerts you could watch as well.
If you have a good sound system, you can really make this into a memorable experience. Throw on your best music festival outfit and dancing shoes, and dim the lights in your respective apartments. Sway together to the slower songs, jump up and down to the fast ones, and sing along with all your favorites. All the while, you’ll be able to see your significant other doing the same at the other end of your screen.
Related Reading: Clumsy! Sexy! Seductive: What Kind Of Dance Partner Do You Have
8. Sweat it out together
We know, we know, LDR dating is a huge challenge for physical intimacy, so we’re not talking about that kind of sweating it out. Instead, how about both of you up your fitness quotient. That’s one of the coolest and healthiest long-distance relationship date ideas.
Fix a fitness goal together. It could be anything – walking 10,000 steps a day, lifting weights three times a week, doing yoga, or dancing. You could join an online fitness class a few times a week. Maintain a joint fitness journal or share your progress in terms of steps completed and so on.
You could even make each other workout music playlists or send each other fitness care packages (cute yoga pants or cool running shoes). Having a fitness buddy is always a great idea, and who better than the love of your life to run alongside you on your fitness journey. Plus, workouts lead to better sex, as and when you meet!
9. Plan an online game night
A couple I’m friends with are big on board games. They have a games night a few times a month and it’s a great bonding exercise. So, if you and your long-distance boo love some Monopoly or Scrabble or chess, don’t let the distance come between you and your board games.
There are lots of places you can find these games online, and of course there are card games galore. There’s also Sudoku, crossword puzzles, mahjong, and other fun games you can play with each other. Games are a great way to unwind and some of these are also good for the brain. So, you’re playing together and getting smarter together. What could be better!
10. Have a wine/whiskey tasting
Feeling posh? Want to plan a fancy and cute long-distance relationship date idea with your sweetheart, but also do something different? Look no further than a wine or a whiskey tasting.
This will possibly need a little planning in advance and you’ll have to look at when online tastings are happening, if you want to do it under expert guidance. However, it’s not necessary that you have to do it with an experienced sommelier. At best, you’ll have stories about funny things your partner did when drunk.
“My partner and I aren’t really into wine and whiskey. And we definitely wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between wines in terms of region or year of bottling,” says Sharon. “But we were long-distance for a few months, and decided to do something fun. So, we each bought some wine and decided to do our own tasting. We drank some of each, and tried to guess the notes and ended up laughing a lot and having a great time.”
11. Have a karaoke night
What’s more fun than karaoke? This could be one of the coolest long-distance relationship date ideas on this list. There are plenty of online options for karaoke music so you needn’t splurge on a karaoke machine. You might want to get yourselves a disco ball with flashing lights if you’re able, and if you really want to up your karaoke game.
Sing duets. Serenade each other with your favorite corny love songs. Do dance numbers together and do the dance steps alongside the singing. This is your own little karaoke party of two, a great way to show affection to your partner, and possibly one of the most fun long-distance date ideas ever!
12. Take funny online quizzes
“What kind of potato are you?” “Only a true fan will answer these Game of Thrones questions correctly.” Sound familiar? Then, you’re obviously a person who loves doing pointless but extremely fun quizzes online. So, why not make it one of your long-distance relationship date ideas?
This is a great way to unwind together if you’ve had an especially stressful week and don’t really want to do much, but do want to hang out together. Find the silliest, funniest quizzes available to you and go to town. You’ll have a good laugh, spend some time together, and who knows, maybe you’ll end up realizing you’re the same kind of potato!
Related Reading: 15 At-Home Date Night Ideas For Couples
13. Start a podcast together
If you’re the kind of couple who loves talking, this could be a fun long-distance date project. Podcasts are the rage – there’s a pod for everything! You and your sweetie could start a casual one about being long-distance partners. Or it could just be a catch-up pod where you swap news or your opinions on the latest in politics and pop culture. Heck, you could talk about the best zodiac pairs for marriage, as long as you’re having fun!
This is a great way to ensure you have an hour’s catch-up every week and a few more hours of planning the podcast together. What a great and fulfilling activity to share and create with each other, right? If you get really into it, you could both learn how to produce and edit podcasts on a more professional level and that, too, would become a shared learning experience. Who knows where it could lead?
Again, we know relationships are tough and LDR dating is especially challenging. But if you’ve decided you want to make this work and are willing to put in the work as well, these activities are great, creative ways of learning and growing together, while also making sure you’re spending quality time with each other. And really, what else can we ask from a love affair?
Dating Tips If You Are In A Long-Distance Relationship
There’s no denying the fact that long-distance dating is hard. Not being able to see, hold, or touch each other for long periods of time, not having a shoulder to cry on, and not being able to celebrate milestones and important occasions together can be difficult. Of course, technology helps us stay in touch and share joys virtually. There are also several fun long-distance date ideas to explore. But nothing beats the satisfaction and peace one gets when their partner is physically present to enjoy special moments with them.
The only way to make a long-distance relationship work is to accept and embrace it. It’s going to be super hard but it’s better to accept the reality than live in denial. You need to accept that it’s happening, that you have valid reasons for taking this step, and that there’s nothing you can do about it. Then there are several other things you can do to make it work. We’ve made a list of 5 tips to keep in mind if you are in a cute long-distance relationship:
1. Communication is key
The importance of communication in a relationship cannot be stressed upon enough. Especially if you are long-distance dating, communicate as much as you can to feel connected to each other. Joie recommends a call ritual where you fix a particular time to talk to each other. Try different ways to talk to one another – phone calls, video calls, good night or good morning messages, handwritten letters, email, photographs, audio clips – whatever works for you and your partner. It’ll help you build emotional intimacy and strengthen your bond further.
According to Joie, “Never spend more than six hours without communicating. Be a habit for each other. Also, practice intimacy in your conversations.” Communication will also help sort out any conflict that might arise. It’ll help you express your emotions and feelings to one another. Don’t overdo it, of course. Just some cute and romantic messages, sharing pictures or videos you like with each other, or stuff that both of you are interested in. Also, talk dirty from time to time to keep that sexual tension alive.
2. Have a positive mindset
There’s enough negativity around long-distance relationship dating. Most people you meet will tell you that it’s not going to work or that it sucks. Some might share long-distance relationship ideas. But the key to making it work is to approach it with a positive attitude. See it as a learning opportunity or a test for your love. Instead of thinking that an LDR will pull you apart, think of how the experience will bring you closer together.
Focus on the positive side of it. We understand being separated from the one you love is not exactly a positive thing but think about how you can devote all your time to your partner without any distractions when you’re together. Plus, there are benefits too. You can work on yourself, pick up a hobby you haven’t had the time to try, spend time with friends and family, and focus on your career, among other things. The minute you change your attitude, things become easier to deal with.
Related Reading: 18 Long-Distance Relationship Problems You Should Know
3. Do things together
Technology has made bonding virtually over things quite easy and convenient for those in long-distance relationships. There are several online date ideas you can explore. Going on a date is no longer just about visiting a restaurant for a romantic meal. Joie suggests, “Watch movies, go shopping on video call, report mundane things, or talk dirty – there’s a lot of things you can do together.”
Look for fun things to do as a couple. There are so many long-distance date ideas you can try – cook and eat meals together while on a video call, take a stroll in the garden while talking on the phone, watch a movie together and stop every few minutes to discuss it, read a book or listen to music together, try a hobby, and so on and so forth. These are a few easy date ideas for couples in LDRs.
4. Visit each other as often as you can
This is another crucial tip to follow if you’re in an LDR. Try to visit each other whenever it’s feasible for both of you. Make it a priority. Finally meeting after having waited and yearned for each other for months – it’s a different feeling altogether. It is absolutely thrilling and makes you feel at peace, doesn’t it? You can hold hands, kiss, cuddle, lean on their shoulder – just feel your partner and be there for each other. These are special and intimate moments that give you butterflies in your stomach but also, so much satisfaction to the soul.
5. Be expressive of your love for each other
This is one of the most important long-distance relationship ideas or tips to keep in mind. When you’re far away from each other, chances of developing feelings of jealousy and insecurity are a lot higher. This is exactly why it is imperative that you frequently remind your partner of your love for them. Tell them how much they matter and how important the relationship is to you. Reassure them of your love. Sending an “I love you” text or saying it verbally on a call will put their doubts and fears to rest.
Joie says, “Whether a long-distance relationship will work or not depends on the couple and their equation. Despite all myths, if you are connected to your partner, then whatever be the distance, the relationship will work.” No one chooses a long-distance relationship. But if you’re in one, respect and embrace the decision instead of thinking about how bad it is going to be or whether it is going to work or not. If you are able to build an emotional connection with your partner, things will work in your favor.
Know that the relationship will change over time – it is inevitable. It’ll have its ups and downs. You might be tempted to act impulsively, there will be moments of love and romance as well as conflict. But always remember to respect the reason that you’re living apart and also know when to put an end to it. After all, you can’t be in a long-distance relationship forever.
Yes, long-distance dating can work, if both the parties are willing to put in the same amount of work to sustain the emotional connection. Long-distance dating can be very challenging, especially if different time zones are involved, so it takes time, effort, and creativity to keep it going. But, it is absolutely possible to keep a long-distance relationship alive and well.
There are lots of ways to keep a long-distance relationship interesting. Plan activities together such as working out or taking an online class together. Make time for frequent date nights, even if all you do is hang out on the screen and watch a movie together. Think of interesting things to do, such as craft projects or cultivating new hobbies together. All of this keeps the spark alive.
Every day would be ideal, but if that’s not possible, make sure you send each other at least a few text messages every day with regular updates of what your day’s looking like. Make sure you talk once every two or three days if every day is not possible. And make time for a good, long catch-up at least once or twice a week so that you’re always a part of each other’s lives.
In long-distance relationships, it really is the little things that count, but it’s also the occasional big gesture. The little things would be asking about their day and always remembering special occasions. A big gesture might be sending them care packages when they’re having a bad day or week, or even for no reason. Maybe you could even plan a trip to where they are and surprise them.