We started this ritual 2 months before our wedding day because we were in serious need of time to check in on each other. If you’ve every helped out with a wedding, been in a wedding, or watched a movie about a wedding, you know what they do; they consume your time and make you hate your loved ones (slight sarcasm there). We started to really see a decline in our quality time together once the wedding got closer and closer. More nights were consumed with planning things and doing things for the wedding, rather than just spending time together (which is valuable to both of us). So, we instituted the weekly Starbucks date night.
It started out with no budget, I was just happy to get us there. We probably spent $40 the first month because we both ordered premium drinks every single time. Shortly after that the wedding date started to get closer, and I slowly started to realize that I was going to have to support both of us financially. I did some quick math and figured out a good budget for us to get on for our Starbucks date nights. The following Monday from whenever that realization set in, instead of paying with cash I loaded a gift card at the register with $25 and then used that $25 gift card to pay for our purchase. Every month since then, probably July, we have loaded a Starbucks gift card with $25. We have gift cards for the fall, winter, spring, and summer months. It has become a good habit, a date night habit that I recommend to any newly wed couple, or engaged couple. Be proactive about it.
Using the gift card has kept us out of going over our “date night” category in our budget. This is crucial because we want to do this, but we do not want it to hurt us financially, or not happen because we have not planned for it. The gift card holds us to a certain amount that we refuse to go over, which then keeps guilt away. By the time Monday rolls around our bodies start to crave our drinks and the time away from wherever we are at the moment, and it’s fun because it is already taken care of: the money is on the gift card and our schedule is blocked off. It’s a carefree, guilt free date night.
Have you used this same method for other stores/restaurants/cafes/movie theatres that you frequent? If so, tell us about it in the comments.