5. Phone a friend. For a less expensive alternative of the previous date night idea, ask friends who are going out of town if you may use their home or apartment as your "hotel room" for the night. Bring your sheets and towels and leave a bottle of champagne as a thank you, along with an offer to return the favor when you're out of town.
6. Double date. Make it a double date with the parents of your child's friend. If the kids are old enough for the sitter-to-child ratio to work, pool your resources and let the kids have a play date while the adults have a double date. You get the enjoyment of remembering how much fun your spouse is when you see him or her interact with others outside of the rut that the two of you may have fallen into.
7. Be original. Try an activity the two of you have never done. Maybe that's taking a cooking class, a dancing lesson or a visiting a ceramics make-it-yourself studio. Doing something new forces you to connect in a new way.
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Having a weekly date night can be a little expensive. In New York City, sitters can charge between $15 and $20 an hour with a three hour minimum. Date night ideas eight, nine and ten are creative ways to help make date nights possible while saving a little money.
8. Set up a babysitting cooperative. Tom and Patty live in a New York City high-rise and saw another couple, Rosa and Dan, who had a daughter about the same age as theirs. They arranged play dates with the kids and helped them establish a friendship. Once they saw that their parenting philosophies were similar they worked out a deal to babysit each other's girls on alternate weekends. Every Saturday night the girls had a standing play date while the two couples had alternating Saturday date nights.
9. The work-week daytime date. Skip the babysitter and go on a date while your child is still in school. If you know you have personal days or sick days left at work, use them and explore your city. Go to your favorite restaurant at lunch when the menu is usually cheaper or hit a museum or gallery. Enjoy playing hooky with your spouse.
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10. Skip out early. Get a sitter and go to an evening PTA meeting together. That's not the romantic part. Leave the meeting a little early before the crowd of parents and tack on a romantic dinner together before you head home to relieve the sitter.
This is not an exhaustive list of date night ideas for parents, but I hope it provides a starting point for some creative ideas of your own.