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12 Pressure-free Valentine’s Day ideas for new relationships

If you’re newly dating or been set up on a blind date, an impending Valentine’s Day can feel like you’ve been thrown into a pressure cooker. Don’t worry.

Laughing young couple snowball fight |

We’ve asked our readers for fun-filled date ideas to keep the mood light and give you the option of ditching early for a night at home alone in front of the TV.


Share an ice cream

Ice cream cone |

“You can tell heaps about a man by his choice in ice cream. If he orders a triple-scoop, chocolate-dipped cone, then he’ll love a girl with an appetite. If he chooses vanilla, he’ll probably be boring, and if he refuses ice cream, he either has irritable bowel syndrome or he’s watching his weight. The best thing about an ice cream parlour is if he turns out to be a dud, you’re done in 30 minutes flat and haven’t wasted your entire night.” — Belinda, 37


Go biking

“Hire tandem bicycles, and go biking somewhere pretty.” — Sarah, 32


Try a boot camp session

“Boot camp will separate the men from the boys. If he can keep up with you without moaning or complaining, he’s a keeper. Afterward, if you’re not that into him, you have the excuse of being hot and sweaty and in desperate need of a shower. If he’s hot, you can always offer to let him come home and wash your back. Ha!” — Jo, 40

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Plan a group date

“It doesn’t matter what you plan if you’re with a big group. It helps keep the date fun and lighthearted, without getting too serious.” — Anna, 32


Ride roller coasters

“Theme parks are a great idea if you’re newly dating. You can try and hold your date’s hand, and if he’s resistant, just blame it on being terrified out of your mind. It also gives him a chance to try and impress you by winning a soft toy by throwing balls at tin cans.” — Dell, 39

Apple |



“Go apple-picking, in season of course. That can be lots of fun and no pressure.”
— Tiff, 18

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“Minigolf is always fun no matter how old you are. You can make it more interesting by having a wager, something like the loser has to pay for lunch.” — Maree, 43


10-pin bowling

“Put on your goofy bowling shoes, and chuck a few balls for an hour. It’s a good way to tell if he can have fun and have a laugh over a few gutter balls. If he’s super focused, serious and yells instructions on how to bowl properly or tells you off when you’re being silly, drop a ball on his foot and run.” — Katie, 29


Watch an ice hockey game

“Ice hockey’s got everything — hot guys, [excitement] and [action]. Double date with another couple, and dress in colours to support the team you’re going for.” — Jen, 27


Ice skating

“It’s romantic, fun and can be a little scary if you’re like me and can barely balance on two legs, let alone a pair of razor-thin blades, and there’s no pressure — unless he’s trying to insist you can skate without clinging on to the rail.” — Lola, 43Chef's hat and whisk |


Cooking classes

“Learning to cook foreign cuisine together in a class environment can be fun for a first date. There’s none of that pressure of what happens next if you’re at home in your own kitchen and had far too much wine.” — Sharon, 29 



“Treasure hunting and trying to work out map coordinates and avoid muggles with a group of friends is a fun way to spend a couple of hours. Having friends around means if the conversation dries up, there’s always someone else to talk to.” — Robbi, 30

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