As Freshers comes to a close, it’s time to talk about everyone’s favourite subject, love. It is something of a sport at university, so knowing all the best date spots in the city is essential. As a student, you may feel limited in your options if you’re on a budget. This doesn’t have to be the case – we’ve gone beyond just tinnies in Whitworth Park or a Student Union jacket potato, this is the ultimate guide to student dates in Manchester.
Junkyard Golf Manchester – Low cost
Junkyard Golf is the perfect fun date spot, with a fun and whimsical design that makes all the courses different and entertaining. Additionally, from Sunday to Thursday there is a half-price offer for all students with a valid student ID making it just £4.00. Although the food and drink can be slightly more pricey inside there are plenty of options available that are more cost-effective later on in the evening. However, if you would like to make the most of your time there, you might want to visit from Sunday to Wednesday when you’ll find there is a happy hour all day long, bringing the prices of certain cocktails and beers down.
Manchester Art Gallery – Free
Situated between the Arndale and the central library, this is a great way to bring some culture into a cheap date. The gallery has an extensive art collection, which ranges from historical and contemporary exhibitions to detailed installations like the current high-fashion Unpicking Couture. There are ever-changing art pieces and different collections on show, which makes it a perfect place to take an artsy date. Also, on the ground floor, they have a lovely café to continue the date with reasonably priced food and drink. If you want to have a leisurely wander, it’s a good place to get to know each other.
Roxy Ball Room
Although this falls on the pricier end of the spectrum for date locations, Roxy Ball Room has a range of activities for you and your date to do. Going off-peak can also reduce the price, (from Sunday to Wednesday), and you’ll find plenty of things to keep you busy, from the cheaper £8 pp ‘crazy pool’ to shuffleboard for £18 pp on these days. Additionally, they also offer American-style pizzas, hotdogs and drinks all in the Arndale shopping centre. The Ball Room is open from 1 pm to 1 am, making it a great late-night date spot.
Whitworth Gallery – Free
Another Cultural date spot, Whitworth Gallery has a lovely collection of thought-provoking pieces, dealing with deep issues. A current installation, Traces of Displacement looks into the diaspora and the connections between people who were taken from their home countries to other places. Additionally, they have many multisensory art pieces to engage with, from sculptures to audio from the artists themselves. With an ever-changing number of installations, this is a lovely date to spark interesting conversations. Inside, they also have a scenic café space overlooking Whitworth Park where you and your date can spend some time together, or just take a walk and have a talk.
All in all, there are hundreds of cheap and low-cost date spots in Manchester, and finding them isn’t too hard. Getting to know event spaces like the Manchester Academy and the Deaf Institute is useful – these signature Manchester spots organise regular budget-friendly events, live music and nights out which are worth attending and popular with students. Looking on social media platforms like TikTok and Instagram is an easy way to find date inspiration tailored to both you and your date. Or, take our advice, and try out one of these tried and tested popular options, where you’re sure to have a good time.