Movie Theater Date Ideas

Movie Theater Date Ideas

We know what you’re thinking—a movie theater date is a little obvious. Predictable even. But it’s a classic for a reason! A night at the cinema is a fabulous option when you’re first getting to know someone. With that in mind, allow us to take you through our tips on how to do it well in 2023: From what to wear and where to go, we’ve got plenty of movie theater date tips coming right up. 

First up: Are drive-in movie theater dates still a thing? 

Yes! Depending on where you live, there could be plenty of drive-in movie theaters to choose from for your special night, with a wide variety of film screenings. Of course, you’ll need a car, a leather jacket, and some hairspray… OK, we’re just kidding on the last two! However, you will need a designated driver, so make sure to factor that into your plans where alcohol is concerned. Safety first, always. 

Other essentials for a drive-in movie theater date night include blankets or extra layers (it can get cold and you don’t want to waste gas to run the heater), snacks (you can usually purchase these at the venue, but you can stock up beforehand to keep costs down), and a good viewing spot (make sure to get there early to secure the best “seats”). If your car is messy—and let’s face it, whose isn’t?—it’s probably worth giving it a tidy up and wipe down before picking up your date. We’re assuming you want to impress them, after all. Nobody wants to watch a movie surrounded by old candy wrappers and soda bottles… 

It’s also worth noting that a drive-in can make for a cheap date movie theater experience. The admission price is usually much more affordable than buying tickets at a regular theater and concessions are often cheaper, too, so if you’re feeling cost conscious, this is a way to go. Check out our other cheap date ideas here.

If you don’t have a car, it’s still possible to get that drive-in experience. Plenty of city parks show classic movies on large-scale screens throughout the warmer summer months for free. Have a look to see what’s going on in your area, pack a blanket and a picnic, and you’re good to go! No wheels required. 

If the outdoors aren’t for you or it’s simply not the right season, there’s nothing wrong with a regular movie theater date. It’s basically the original first-date idea, and for good reason. It’s informal, relaxed, gives you both something to focus on, and leaves the situation open ended—if the date goes well, you can always continue it post-movie. If not, you can easily part ways and head home without causing offense. No brainer, if you ask us. 

Now, what to wear to a movie theater date?

It’s always tricky deciding what to wear on a date of any kind. For a movie theater date, it’s worth remembering that you’re going to be sitting down for the majority of it—tight jeans or pants are not going to be comfortable! They’re also not snack friendly. Opt for something loose fitting instead—a smock dress, wide-legged pants, or a jumpsuit are all great options. We’d suggest saving the sweatpants for (much) later down the line in your relationship, though, no matter how comfy they are. Movie theaters often have the air conditioning cranked high, so you’d do well to bring a sweater or wrap just in case.

It’s good to keep the temperature in mind for a drive-in or any kind of outdoor screening as well. Remember, it’ll get cooler as the night continues. Bring a jacket with you or an extra layer that you can easily pull on and off. And be sure to check the weather forecast beforehand.

For footwear, keep it casual—turning up to any kind of movie theater in towering heels might come across as overkill. But if that’s what you wear on the regular, then go for it—stick to your original style and you’ll feel way more relaxed. If you’re headed to a drive-in or outdoor screening, it’s worth bearing in mind that you may be treading on grassy or soft ground. Sneakers are always a great choice, but any kind of flat shoe that you can easily move around in works.

Ultimately your movie theater date outfit should be cool and casual—much like the mood of the night itself. There’s no need to go super formal or overdress. The most important thing is to dress how you feel most comfortable. Changing your style and trying to look like someone you aren’t will only go so far. As always, the most important thing is to be yourself.

Finally, here are some top movie theater date tips:

  • Book tickets in advance. Sounds basic, but there’s nothing worse than pulling up to any kind of movie theater and discovering the flick is sold out.
  • Choose an appropriate film. This is crucial—you want both you and your date to enjoy the movie. Try and get an idea of what kind of thing they like beforehand and ask if there’s any new releases they’re keen to see. You also probably want to avoid anything overtly sad, violent, or sexual, especially if it’s a first date and you’re still getting to know one another. If you have different tastes, that’s totally fine—maybe you can take turns arranging different movie theater dates and learn about what each other likes and dislikes. 
  • Have post-movie plans. Obviously this one depends on what time you see the movie, but it’s probably good to think about extending the date if it goes well. You may want to grab a drink or dinner afterwards—check out what’s around the drive-in or movie theater and make a reservation. You can always cancel it if you don’t feel a connection on the date.
  • Pay attention to the film. This might sound obvious, but don’t zone out while watching! If you want to hang out after the movie, you’ll want to remember some of the parts of it that you liked or disliked so you can talk about it with your date. By doing this you can learn more about one another, and it’s an easy thing for you both to connect over. 
  • Go easy on the affection. Drive-in movie theater dates have a reputation for being a place to hook up. It’s fine if you want to do this, but it’s worth keeping in mind that your date may not have the same idea. Communication is always key, and you should respect their wishes if they’re not ready to take it there. Making out in a public place isn’t for everyone, after all. Be mindful of the other people around you and please don’t do anything inappropriate—you may get kicked out. 
  • Pick up your trash. Whether you’re at a regular movie theater or a drive-in, dispose of your trash properly. Snacks might be the best part of the movie date experience, but nobody likes a litter bug.

We hope we’ve provided plenty of inspiration for your next movie theater date night. It’s a super fun, yet casual date experience that is perfect for getting to know your next Bumble match. Follow our tips and you can’t go wrong.