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Dealing With the Great Canadian Date Night Downturn

Feb. 9, 2016
5 mins
A couple sit on the couch and watch a movie with popcorn

RATESDOTCA Study finds 68% of Canadian parents struggle to afford romance

Love, marriage and the baby carriage is increasingly followed by date night doldrums according to a recent survey by RATESDOTCA, Canada’s comprehensive financial rates comparison resource.

The survey, which polled 2,728 respondents on their sentiments on date night affordability, finds Canadian moms and dads are half as likely to make time for two than non-parents, with 68% stating they go on fewer than one date per month with their partner.

And the bundle of joy is taking the blame; costs associated with raising a family were the top reasons cited for date night affordability.

By contrast, only 31.7% of non-parents went on fewer than one date per month, and stated miscellaneous bills posed the greatest financial challenge.

A weaker loonie and rising food and entertainment costs may mean Canadian moms and dads are extra strapped for cash – and romance.

“Canadians are seeing their spending power weaken, and that impacts all aspects of the household budget,” says Penelope Graham, Editor at RATESDOTCA. “It’s important to factor time for two into your financial plan, along with rising family costs.”

The Top Reasons Canadians Can’t Afford Date Night:

  • Costs associated with having a family: 18.3%
  • I don't earn enough for extras like date night: 11.62%
  • I don't find it hard to afford date night.: 13.4%
  • I'm saving for a big ticket item (car, wedding, new home, etc.): 11.4%
  • My other bills don't leave me with enough disposable income: 27.6%
  • My rent / mortgage payments: 17.6%

RATESDOTCA’s Top Tips for Affording Date Night

While 50.83% of Canadians spend between $50 - $100 per date night, one quarter manages on a budget of $10 - $50. Here are a few ways to afford a sweet – and less spendy – date night.

Build it into the budget: Include a line item for romantic outings among bills, shelter costs and your grocery budget each month, even if it’s just for a coffee or a movie out. Planning ahead makes date night a priority, rather than an afterthought in your household budget.

Make Rewards Work for You: Are you a savvy credit card rewards collector? Using a card that earns cash back or points on dining, entertainment or grocery costs during date night means you can help offset your household budget in the process.

Take a Spendthrift Staycation: 36.5% of parents reported they take a romantic vacation fewer than every two years. While the beach may be out of reach for some new families, staying local for a long weekend (with baby at the sitter) can give parents the rejuvenation they need to rekindle their romance.

Penelope Graham

A first-time homeowner and newbie investor, Penelope Graham is the quintessential millennial, navigating the world of personal finance and wealth management. A self-professed monetary policy nerd, she follows the often-controversial housing market closely and specializes in mortgage, credit card and personal finance news.

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