A single person’s guide to finding love in Lagos without breaking the bank

What are the cheapest ways to find love in Lagos?

Lagos, a bustling urban hub, is home to many young people searching for love and romance. However, the quest can prove to be quite challenging and financially demanding.

When looking for love in Lagos and choosing where to go on a first date, don’t say, “I don’t have money” That sounds like a lie, or you are poverty-stricken. Also, avoid saying “I have a budget”.

I recall a man who suggested us meeting at Chicken Republic, a fast-food restaurant due to monetary constraints. I thought he was saying that because he didn’t value me enough to take me out on a proper date, but he might have been on a budget, who knows? If he wanted to spend time with me, there are better ways he could have presented it.

Why dating in Lagos is so expensive

Picture this; you want to go on a date with a lady for the first time. The lady may request you to cover her transportation expenses to the venue, or in rare cases, even ask for financial support to buy clothes and shoes for the date, but these situations are not common. Typically, she might only ask for private cab fares.

However, some women don’t ask for transport fare, and some men don’t offer.

Transportation is expensive in Lagos [Uber]

Lagos Island boasts the finest dining experiences, but considering private cab fees for those travelling from the mainland, the expenses can add up significantly. You and your date might also not want to jump up and down yellow buses.

Even if she doesn’t ask, he will also book a ride to the location if he doesn’t have a car, and if he has a car, petrol is expensive. By the time transportation costs are tallied, it would be around ₦10,000 to ₦15,000.

If you eventually settle on a restaurant, the main course for one person will cost at least ₦15,000, while drinks start at about ₦5,000.

At the end of the date, you (mostly men) would have spent ₦50,000 to ₦70,000 on the date. That’s not sustainable, especially for the men or women who shoulder the bills. Going on dates with multiple women or men in a month may result in a fruitless outcome, as there is no assurance of mutual affection or attraction, leading to a mere squandering of time and resources.

The cheapest way to find love in Lagos

Think of free and cheap date ideas in Lagos

Date within your tax bracket

This is important; if your date is used to high-end restaurant hopping and you aren’t, it’s already a mismatch from the beginning. You have to be on a similar wavelength financially. Don’t go out with someone whose taste is way above yours; she might keep ordering food meanwhile, you are dying inside.

Have a dating budget for the month

What’s your dating budget for the month? It should be part of your budget marked, ‘recreation’. If you earn ₦200,000, ₦30,000 seems reasonable if you are searching for love.

Once you know your budget, then you can start planning how to have a cheap date.

ALSO READ: Date ideas under ₦,5000.

Choose a location close to either of you

I promise you, if you don’t go to an overpriced Lagos restaurant on the Island, you can still have a fun date. There are restaurants and bars almost everywhere in Lagos. A simple Google search would reveal that to you. If you are confused, just go to the mall closest to you or your date.

Attend concerts, the cinema and shows together

Most concert and movie tickets are priced at ₦5,000. Some shows at Muson Centre can even go for ₦3,000. This way both of you have cheap fun. Most times, you can plan towards shows, events and concerts by saving up for them. A great concert for a first date will be Johnny Drille’s.

Picnic dates

How about you defund these Lagos Island restaurants by cooking for you and your date? There are many parks and open fields in Lagos for your picnic. There’s Muri Okunola, at Victoria Island, it’s free to access if no events are happening there. The entrance fee for Freedom Park at Old Prison Ground,1, Hospital Road is ₦200. You could try MKO Abiola Gardens at Ojota, Ndubusi Park at Ikeja or you could simply use an empty football pitch or basketball court.

Just make sure you look at the weather forecast, you don’t want to go on a rainy day.

Go out for drinks or coffee

You don’t always have to eat Alfredo pasta. There are so many clubs, cafes and lounges, you could go to have drinks while conversing with your date. Someone suggested a coffee date (though not many Nigerians like coffee) – that’s typically what’s called Brunch. You can get light refreshments and snacks in the afternoon or midday while getting to know each other.

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