Lets face it, as UQ students we don’t really have a lot of money to be splurging on dates. Especially when they involve fancy dinners and expensive weekend getaways to The Gold Coast. But never fear, dating doesn’t always have to be expensive, and it doesn’t have to involve Netflix and chill. If you get creative and think outside the box, you and your partner will discover there are so many things to do and places to see that are fun, exciting and won’t break the bank. Here is a list of 15 cheap and fun date ideas near The University of Queensland to get you started.

1. Go for a picnic at New Farm Park

Just a 20 minute drive from UQ, New Farm Park is the perfect date spot, with its pretty view of the city and easy access to public transport. Pack a picnic and bring a frisbee to throw around for a fun and inexpensive afternoon of cuteness.

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2. Hit up a beach volley ball game on campus

Probably the worst thing about Brisbane is that we have to drive 45 minutes just to get to the beach. But, if your into beach sports and can’t be bothered to drive to the beach, look no further than the UQ athletics fields. On the east side of campus, you’ll find an awesome outdoor beach volley ball court available to students to use at anytime. All you have to do is book online via this website and you’re good to go.

3. Watch the sunset at Mt Coot-tha

Head up to the Mt Coot-tha lookout late afternoon to watch the sun go down over the Brisbane skyline. Enjoy an ice cream from Kuta Cafe and take in the beautiful views of Brisbane and its surrounding suburbs.

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4. Host a games night with friends

Invite your best mates around for a couple’s games night. I’m talking monopoly, pizza and booze – all the ingredients for a fun/cheap night in. The best part is, you don’t have to get dressed up! Take it in turns to host the games night and include a prize for the winning couple.

5. Go for a bike ride along the river at Southbank

Only a short commute from UQ, Southbank is beautiful and buzzing with culture and things to do. Take a bike ride along the parkland, up the river and all the way to Dockside. The ride should take a few hours and you’ll be guaranteed beautiful views and perfect selfie spots for you and your boo.

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6. Play a game of tennis

Bring out your inner Serena Williams and verse your date in a game of tennis. You can get sweaty and show off your serve without even leaving campus. The UQ Tennis Centre is open everyday and court hire starts at just $13 an hour. All you need to do is book online via this website and your ready to serve up an ace!

7. Hit up Ladies Night at Down Under Bar

Down Under bar, or Dunda as the locals call it is a guaranteed big night out. Every Tuesday they have cheap drinks for ladies, along with the infamous Lady Boy dance competition. If your bae is feeling brave, he can dress up as a lady and shake his booty to win cool prizes like skydiving vouchers and cash money  You can cheer him on, maybe even live stream to Facebook? Regardless, it’ll be a hilarious date night you’ll never forget.

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8. Arrange a study date at Merlo’s

Sure studying isn’t the most romantic or exciting thing in the world. But with a cutie by your side and the best coffee on campus, its guaranteed to be a whole lot better than sitting in your bedroom. Merlo’s is located right in the heart of UQ’s great court and is open from 7 a.m. daily. So order some coffee’s, crack open the textbooks and get revising because good grades are sexy.

9. Check out the latest exhibit at UQ Art Museum

The UQ art museum might just be the perfect spot for a first date. First of all, its free entry. Secondly, its located right on campus. And thirdly, the walls are loaded with conversation starters – what more could you want? By the end of the date, you will have gaged each others interests and really see if you have good conversation. After the gallery, grab a coffee at Darwin’s to keep the date rolling on.

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10. Catch some rays at the UQ Swimming Pool

If your looking for an excuse to perv on your crush, invite them to the uni pool for a swim and a sunbathe. The UQ pool is open every day from 4:30 a.m. – 7 p.m. and entry is just $5 for students. This means you’ll be able to save money, and splash about while enjoying each others company.

11. Go for brunch at Brick and Bean Cafe

Located right in the heart of St Lucia, Brick and Bean is a student hub and the perfect brunch spot. Brick and Bean has an awesome menu, great vibe and is just a 5 minute walk from the centre of campus. As a student you can even grab a bacon and egg burger with a hash brown and a coffee for just $11.50. What a bargain?

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12. Grab a boost juice and sit on the Grassy Knoll

Okay, so UQ is actually pretty damn beautiful. So why not invite your date for a boost juice on the Grassy Knoll? You can soak up the sandstone, and people watch while trying to not make eye contact with an ibis.

13. Take a stroll through the Botanic Gardens

Located at the base of Mt Coot-tha, the Brisbane Botanic Gardens offer 56 hectares of beauty and nature. The gardens are open every day of the year between 8am-5pm and entry is completely free. Hold hands as you walk along the flower lined paths and discover Japanese Gardens, waterfalls, and a tropical greenhouse. Be sure to pack sunscreen though, no one wants a beetroot face on a date.

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14. Play a game of pool at The Red Room

Located on campus in the Union Building, The Red Room bar + grill is open for students and the general public. Invite your date for a game of pool while you sip on some cheap drinks. Depending on the day, you may even be able to catch some live music.

15. Have a BBQ at Kangaroo Point Cliffs

Kangaroo Point is one of Brisbane’s most romantic spots with its stunning views of the skyline and The Story Bridge. Located just a 20 minute drive from UQ, Kangaroo Point has a beautiful park and BBQ facilities. Pack some dinner and drinks and you are set for a gorgeous night under the stars.

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